Rockies can't find right formula to slow Stanton

Rockies can't find right formula to slow Stanton

MIAMI -- Over the past nine days, Rockies pitchers have faced Giancarlo Stanton in six games. However, they still can't figure out how to slow down the Marlins' slugger.

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The 6-foot-6 right-handed hitter notched a home run, double and four RBIs in the Rockies' 4-1 loss Saturday afternoon at Marlins Park. It marked Stanton's second four-RBI game of the series, and he's now 6-for-11 in the four-game set that concludes Sunday.

"He's in a zone right now and we've had a hard time containing him," manager Walt Weiss said. "There's not many [similar]. [Jose] Canseco back in his heyday was similar to that, but yeah, he's pretty impressive."

Combined with last weekend's series at Coors Field, Stanton is 9-for-25 with three home runs, three doubles and nine RBIs in his recent stretch vs. Colorado. Backup catcher Michael McKenry, who started on Saturday, said the Rockies may be trying to be too careful with the Major League home run leader.

"I think that's the biggest issue -- trying to make sure he doesn't hurt us," McKenry said. "And that's when you make your biggest mistakes. That's what happened today. ...[Starting pitcher David Hale] battled and battled and battled. He was trying to make pitches to [Stanton], but both times we were trying to do something and it didn't work."

Stanton knocked a two-run double in the first inning before tagging Hale for a two-run homer in the sixth. Other than the Miami cleanup hitter, Hale (2-1, 4.56 ERA) allowed just two hits in six innings to the rest of the Marlins' lineup.

"I made mistakes at the wrong time, but other than that, I felt really good," Hale said.

The righty added that the Stanton double came on a fastball left over the middle of the plate, while the homer came on a hanging changeup. Lefty Jorge De La Rosa gets his crack at slowing Stanton in the series finale on Sunday.

"It's just being smart about what you give him, in a sense," Hale said. "That was just a terrible pitch -- the home run that he hit -- at the wrong time."

Steve Wilaj is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.