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Rockies pitchers hit hard again as Diamondbacks sweep series with 12-7 win

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DENVER - The Colorado Rockies have lost seven in a row and are tumbling farther and farther back in the NL West standings.

But Troy Tulowitzki isn't ready to fret just yet. Plenty of time, in his mind, to turn things around since it's only June.

"We come to play every single day," Tulowitzki said. "It's just not happening right now."

Chris Owings, Paul Goldschmidt and Miguel Montero homered as the Arizona Diamondbacks reached double-digits against the Rockies again, completing a sweep with a 12-7 win Thursday night.

Arizona took all three games at Coors Field for the first time since April 2008. This series was quite an offensive display by the Diamondbacks, too, as they scored 32 runs and collected 48 hits over the three games.

Not even a pregame pep talk from manager Walt Weiss could shake the Rockies from their funk.

Have they hit rock bottom?

"I don't know," Weiss said. "We have a game tomorrow. We'll try to win a game tomorrow."

They're banking on prized pitching prospect Eddie Butler to break this streak in his major league debut against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday. No pressure there.

"He's got a great arm. He is a great competitor," Weiss said. "He's unflappable."

The Rockies certainly need him to be as they're in the midst of their longest skid since losing nine in a row late in the 2012 season.

"We had some bad luck," Tulowitzki said.

A night after the Diamondbacks put up 16 runs, they pounded Rockies starter Juan Nicasio (5-4). The right-hander struggled with his command, allowing a season-high seven runs in 5 1-3 innings.

"When you are missing or elevating, bad things happen," Weiss said. "Especially here. It is imperative that he pitch to the bottom of the zone. Make opposing hitters have to dig the ball out of the bottom of the zone."

Bronson Arroyo (5-4) pitched effectively most of the evening before running out of steam. The 37-year-old allowed four runs and six hits in 6 1-3 innings.

Even Arroyo pitched differently because of this park. He went with fastballs 60 per cent of the time — something he usually doesn't do. But hey, this quirky park sometimes calls for an unorthodox approach.

"I threw an offbeat game," Arroyo said.

The Rockies were simply off their game.

"Everybody has to do what they can," Weiss said. "We have to find ways to win games. We've been playing from behind a lot. I think it's tough trying to do that."

Owings had a two-run homer in the eighth that gave Arizona a 9-6 lead. The cushion was valuable at the time as Rockies pinch hitter Brandon Barnes hit an inside-the-park homer in the bottom of the inning, when the ball sailed over the head of centre fielder Ender Inciarte, hit off the base of the wall and caromed away.

It was the 14th inside-the-park homer in Rockies history and first since Eric Young Jr. had one on Aug. 8, 2012, in Los Angeles.

Arizona added to its lead in the ninth with three more runs. Inciarte ended the game by making a leaping catch at the wall on Wilin Rosario's deep drive.

Arroyo had a 7-3 lead heading into the seventh inning, when he ran into trouble. A usually reliable bullpen struggled, too. The Rockies scored three times on RBI singles from Drew Stubbs, Michael Cuddyer and Corey Dickerson.

With the bases loaded and two outs, Oliver Perez was brought in to face pinch hitter Justin Morneau, who grounded out to third to end the rally.

"That was huge," Arroyo said. "He came in and gave us that one out we needed and really broke the game open for us."

NOTES: Colorado held a moment of silence for Don Zimmer, who died Wednesday at 83. Zimmer spent three seasons as a coach with the Rockies. ... The Rockies placed RHP Jordan Lyles (fractured left hand) and LHP Boone Logan (elbow inflammation) on the 15-day disabled list. ... Colorado selected LHP Kyle Freeland with the No. 8 pick. Freeland grew up in Denver. ... OF Charlie Blackmon hit his third leadoff homer of the season.

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