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Rockies End Astros Win Streak


After four shaky starts in three weeks, Darryl Kile finally gave any would-be suitors something positive to think about.

Kile, frequently mentioned in trade talks over the past month, pitched eight strong innings Thursday as the Colorado Rockies ended Houston's six-game winning streak with a 4-2 victory over the Astros.

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Game Summary

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  • "I made a commitment to come here and pitch the best I can for as long as I'm here, and that's all I'm trying to do," Kile (6-10) said. "You start thinking about other things and you're going to get out of your game."

    Vinny Castilla hit a two-run homer for the Rockies, who stopped their losing streak at six and avoided going winless on a seven-game homestand. Since joining the majors in 1993, Colorado has never lost every game of a multi-series homestand.

    "I'm tickled to death for (Kile)," Rockies manager Jim Leyland said. "I'm tickled to death for me. We needed to win a game desperately. He came up big today."

    Kile, who is in the second year of a three-year, $24 million contract, held his former team to two runs on seven hits. He had given up 22 earned runs in his four previous starts, all losses.

    "I thought we went sleepwalking into the game and didn't really start getting some intensity until the middle innings," Astros manager Larry Dierker said. "When we picked it up, (Kile) picked it up."

    Kile retired the side in order four times and stranded the tying run at second when the Astros loaded the bases with two outs in the eighth. He also hit an RBI single, ending an 0-for-32 slump.

    Dave Veres pitched the ninth for his 19th save in 24 chances. He stranded the tying run at second when pinch-hitter Tony Eusebio grounded out to end the game.

    "I try to make it exciting," Veres said jokingly. "One, two, three

  • anybody can do that."
  • The NL Central-leading Astros lost for just the fourth time in 18 games. They are 11-4 since Dierker returned from a seizure that required brain surgery.

    "This game was close enough to be a win. I don't think anyone is happy about winning three of four," Dierker said. "We expect to win every game and that is how you should be. If you are not a good team, you can say that, but you are kidding yourself. With our club, we can win every game."

    Castilla's two-out, two-run homer off Chris Holt (2-10) broke a 1-1 tie in the fifth. Holt left with two outs in the sixth after left fielder Daryle Ward misplayed Neifi Perez's double, allowing Terry Shumpert to score from first.

    Houston pulled to 4-2 in the eighth on a double by Paul Bako, who tied a career high with four hits, and a pinch-hit, RBI single by Matt Mieske, who was 9-for-12 in the series.

    Kile gave the Rockies an early 1-0 lead with a two-out, RBI single in the second, but the Astros tied it in the third on Craig Biggio's run-scoring double.

    Notes:

  • The Astros failed to get 10 hits for the first time in six games.
  • The Rockies have never been swept in a four-game series at Coors Field. They were swept in four by the Atlanta Braves at Mile High Stadium in 1993.
  • Houston is 9-24 in Denver, with three of the victories coming this week.
  • Colorado OF Darryl Hamilton returned after missing three games with tendinitis in his left knee.
  • Biggio went 10-for-15 in the four games.

    ©1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

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