Latest Story a mad dash around bases

Latest Story a mad dash around bases

ATLANTA -- After singling to start the ninth inning on Saturday night, Rockies shortstop Trevor Story decided he was going to run at the drop of a shin guard.

Story took second on Braves reliever Jim Johnson's first wild pitch, which didn't rebound far from catcher A.J. Pierzynski. He then beat a throw to third when Pierzynski couldn't backhand another Johnson bouncer. Story gave the Rockies a 4-3 victory by rushing home on Mark Reynolds' grounder to short.

After grabbing the fancy of fans during the first half with his 21 home runs, Story's legs were key to a win that the Rockies hope is a building block toward contending, at least in the National League Wild Card race.

With management having said it wants to give this roster a chance to redeem itself before considering becoming a seller before the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline, Story and the Rockies have received the message -- win any way you can.

"We're going to try to be aggressive as a team, especially in the ninth when we have a tough guy like [Johnson] on the mound," said Story, whose run gave the Rockies their first win in 44 games when trailing after seven innings. "Anything just to move up 90 feet.

"That's definitely something that I'm going to put an emphasis on in the second half, being more aggressive."

Before Friday's 11-2 victory over the Braves, Rockies manager Walt Weiss emphasized a simplified offensive approach, that it's OK to find other ways when the big swing doesn't come.

Mike Foltynewicz held the Rockies to two hits in the first seven innings as the Braves built a 3-0 lead. But singles by Ryan Raburn, Nick Hundley, DJ LeMahieu and Carlos Gonzalez in the eighth, and aggressive running by Reynolds -- who walked, moved on Hundley's single, took third on Cristhian Adames' fly ball to center and scored on a Hunter Cervenka wild pitch -- tied the game.

Reynolds scores on a wild pitch

In the ninth, after Story's mad but calculated dashes put the go-ahead run at third, Weiss let Story use his legs. With Reynolds batting, he called for Story to run on contact, "which typically I don't do with just a runner on third."

Braves shortstop Erick Aybar, playing at the edge of the infield grass, fielded Reynold's bouncer, but his throw short-hopped Pierzynski and Story slid home safely.

"Story runs so well that I rolled the dice," Weiss said. "He got a good jump. He slipped a little bit, but he had a great read on the groundball."

Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, listen to podcasts and like his Facebook page. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.