Rockies 3, Reds 0


DENVER (AP) – Jeff Francis allowed four hits over seven innings for his first win in six starts this season and the Colorado Rockies ended a two-game losing streak with a 3-0 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday night.

Francis (1-2) struck out five and walked one in winning for the first time since Sept. 28 at Atlanta, his last start last season.

Jose Mesa pitched a scoreless eighth inning and Brian Fuentes worked the ninth to complete the Rockies’ first shutout of the season and earn his sixth save.

Matt Holliday was 3-for-4 with a two-run double and Danny Ardoin had an RBI single for Colorado.

Francis worked out of trouble in the first and second innings. He got Edwin Encarnacion to pop out with two outs and two on in the first, and he left Brandon Phillips stranded at third in the second. Rich Aurilia doubled with two outs in the third and Francis retired the next 11 hitters before giving up a one-out single to Austin Kearns in the seventh.

Cincinnati had its two-game winning streak snapped. The Reds entered the game with the best record in the majors (19-8) and were off to their best start since 1990, when they began 21-7.

Brandon Claussen (2-3) allowed three runs and seven hits in 6 2-3 innings. He struck out five and walked two.

The Rockies scored all their runs in the fifth. Ardoin drove in the first run with a single and Holliday made it 3-0 with the two-out double over the head of center fielder Ryan Freel.

Notes: The Rockies played without SS Clint Barmes, who was in Indiana attending the funeral of a cousin. … Brandon Claussen was only the second left-hander to start against Colorado this year. … OF Ken Griffey Jr. did not accompany the Reds to Colorado. … RHP Paul Wilson of the Reds will make his next rehab start Sunday in Charlotte. … Aurilia, who has an 11-game hitting streak, left the game after the sixth inning with a strained right groin.

AP-ES-05-03-06 2300EDT