TUCSON, Ariz. c Russ Ortiz flashed his smile and his pitching skills — two things that were largely absent during his injury-interrupted 2005 season. The right-hander, who went 5-11 last year after making his first career trip to the disabled list with a ribcage injury, allowed one earned run on two hits over 4 q innings in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ 12-9 win over the Colorado Rockies. Ortiz walked three and struck out three in his best performance in four spring starts. Rockies starter Zach Day didn’t have much to smile about after his fourth straight ineffective start. “When I was down in the zone and not getting the ball up, I was getting the ground balls that I was looking for,” Day said. Problem was, he had 10 baserunners to go with the 10 ground balls he induced. Day allowed five earned runs on nine hits and a walk in five innings. Day, who joined the Rockies in a trade at the All-Star break last season, did not throw his sinker with any consistency, further hurting his chances of winning a spot in the starting rotation. “I’m a little frustrated it’s taking this long, but it is spring training,” Day said. “It is what it is and I know what I can do when things are right.” Day showed only slight signs of being more aggressive with his sinker. “He did roll up 10 groundball outs, so that’s a plus,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. “And his sinker was better, that’s a plus. “And he did deal with 10 baserunners. So, there’s work to be done.” The Rockies overcame a 7-2 seventh-inning deficit and took a 9-8 lead into the ninth. Arizona’s Scott Hairston tied it with an RBI single and Jerry Gill hit a two-out, threerun homer off Keiichi Yabu to end the Rockies’ five-game winning streak. TODAY Colorado vs. L.A. Angels, 1:05 p.m., FSN, 850 AM
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