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COL@ARI: Miley tosses eight frames of one-run ball

PHOENIX -- Throughout Wade Miley's nearly two-month swoon since May 8, the young left-hander admitted to thinking too much on the mound. Trying to be too perfect, he was in his head more often than in the game, and it led to a 1-6 record with a 5.31 ERA over the span.

On Saturday night, the D-backs' offense made it easy for Miley to return to his old, free-thinking self.

A trio of Arizona sluggers launched homers and Miley turned in a performance reminiscent of his All-Star season a year ago as the D-backs powered their way to a fourth consecutive win, 11-1, over the Rockies at Chase Field.

"It makes it a lot easier when you have runs on the board and you're not trying to make every pitch perfect," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said of Miley's night. "Sometimes he fights himself, but we need him to stay focused on the task. He had a good two-seamer tonight and he was really efficient with his pitches. He did a good job."

Paul Goldschmidt, Martin Prado and Miguel Montero all left the yard for Arizona while Cody Ross set a career high with five hits to back Miley, who held the Colorado lineup to just one run on five hits over eight innings.

"The way we were hitting, you just want to go right after guys and get the offense back in as quick as possible," Miley said. "That was my mentality, not try to do too much."

With the victory, the D-backs extended their lead in the National League West to a season-high 4 1/2 games over both the Rockies and Dodgers. This coming only a couple of days after the club finished its 10-game East Coast road trip with a 3-7 record.

"Baseball is a funny game," Ross said. "As a team we didn't play great at all on the road. We figured out ways to win the last two games of the trip and took that momentum into this series."

Carlos Gonzalez's solo homer in the seventh snapped Miley's shutout bid and his career-best 13 2/3-scoreless-inning streak dating back to June 26, but that was all the Rockies would get.

"All these games are very important, but at the same time we need to play better baseball," Gonzalez said. "If we don't pitch and we don't hit, it's difficult to win this way. They're doing the opposite -- they're pitching and they're hitting."

Following Miley's exit, Charles Brewer worked a clean ninth to secure Miley's first win since June 5. After the bullpen worked a combined 10 extra innings in the club's previous series with the Mets, D-backs relievers have only been needed for two frames over the first two games of this series. Tyler Skaggs also worked eight innings on Friday.

"The bullpen got used a lot in New York, so I was just trying to go out and go as long as I could," Miley said. "It was good."

Back in the second inning at the plate, Miley provided all the support he would need when he smacked a two-out, three-run double into shallow left field against Rockies starter Drew Pomeranz, who walked two batters to load the bases.

"I was looking for something up," Miley said. "I didn't even know where it went when I swung. I just swung."

Prior to his timely hit Saturday, the southpaw had only two RBIs this season and five in 109 career at-bats.

An inning later, Goldschmidt, just hours after learning he'd made the NL All-Star roster, showed why he was selected, launching a two-run blast into the bleachers to give the D-backs a 5-0 cushion. The first baseman hit the pitch so hard, Rockies left fielder Gonzalez barely flinched as the ball flew over his head.

The long ball gave Goldschmidt 21 for the season, setting a career high in just his 86th contest of 2013. Last year he hit 20 in 145 games.

After Gerardo Parra plated another run with a double in the fifth, Prado got in on the fun when he hit his eighth homer of the year in the seventh, a two-run shot to left.

Not to be outdone, Montero capped off the D-backs' offensive outburst in the eighth, golfing a pitch down in the zone over the right-field fence for a three-run shot.

"They were patient and then we hit three home runs, those are big blows," Gibson said. "It was another great game for us." Comments