Josh Collmenter can only hope his start against the Rockies on Wednesday is as good as his last outing, when he made D-backs history.
Collmenter tossed the best game of his career Thursday against the Reds. He spun his first career complete game, a three-hitter, and faced the minimum. The only other D-backs pitcher who faced the minimum was Randy Johnson, who did so in his perfect game in 2004.
"That's always the key for me, is if I can throw my fastball for strikes and let all the breaking balls and changeups play off of that," Collmenter said Thursday following his masterpiece. "And if I can stay down in the zone, even if I might be over the plate a little bit I tend to get balls off the end of the bat or underneath some of the high popups.
"So that's really been a focus, fastballs down, and making sure that I'm moving it in and out, but mainly keep it down so it's tough for them to get the barrel of the bat to it."
For Colorado, righty Jordan Lyles will look to continue his good fortune in Denver. Lyles is 3-1 with a 3.24 ERA at Coors Field, though he was shelled in his last home start by the Padres. San Diego scored six times off Lyles in 3 1/3 innings on May 17, but Lyles rebounded to allow just four earned runs over 11 innings his last two starts, both on the road.
Lyles' success in Denver mirrors that of the Rockies, who are 16-8 at home compared to 12-21 on the road. In order to get Lyles a win, though, they'll have to give the righty more help than they have recently. He enters the game with two or fewer runs of support in three straight starts (0-1), well below his season average of 6.8.
"I think he's had an outing or two where he hasn't thrown as many strikes," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "But he's been very effective with the exception of one outing. If he keeps doing that I'm good with it. He's given us a chance to win just about every time out. He's been a big lift to our rotation."
D-backs: Pennington to have surgery
D-backs shortstop Cliff Pennington will undergo surgery on his left thumb Wednesday to repair damaged ligaments he sustained against the Padres last week. He'll be out at least six to eight weeks.
"He's a little bit off the radar for many people, but he's not for us," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "He's invaluable. When he's playing you see what he does, but the things he does when he's not playing for his teammates and the way he looks at the game, the way he helps people, he's irreplaceable. He really is. It's tough.
"He's a lot better than people give him credit for. He's a gamer, he's a grinder, he's a winner."
Rockies: Cuddyer 'right at home' at third
For Michael Cuddyer, playing the hot corner proved to be like riding a bike this past weekend.
Making his first two starts at third base since 2010, Weiss noted his regular right fielder appeared "right at home" there Saturday and Sunday. In fact, Weiss said Cuddyer was eager to dive right back into the position without so much as a warmup.
"When I brought [the position change] up, [Cuddyer] said, 'I'm ready whenever you need me,'" said Weiss. "He wasn't even concerned about going out there and getting ground balls … And that's the next day after Nolan [Arrenado] got hurt."
Arrenado is expected to miss at least six weeks with the broken middle finger in his left hand. Weiss said Tuesday that he'll continue to mix and match his lineup in the meantime and said that Cuddyer, who has 167 career starts at third, will continue to see some time at the hot corner, along with Charlie Culberson.
• As of Tuesday's update, with 1,419,718 votes, Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki was the leading vote-getter across both leagues for the All-Star Game. The Rockies have never had the leading vote-getter for an All-Star Game.
• Heading into action Tuesday's, Lyles' ratio of ground balls to fly balls of 2.89 is second among National League starters.
• The D-backs on Tuesday called up Didi Gregorius to replace Pennington. Gregorius hit .310 with 14 doubles, four triples, three homers, 25 RBIs and 42 runs in 57 games with Triple-A Reno.
• Arizona reliever Oliver Perez has not allowed a run in his last nine outings (eight innings).
Joe Popely is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.