first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREChargers go winless in AFC West with season-ending loss in Kansas CityThe Rockies roared into the NL Championship Series Saturday night, completing a three-game sweep by beating Philadelphia, 2-1, on pinch-hitter Jeff Baker’s tiebreaking single with two outs in the eighth inning. Colorado’s 17th win in 18 games was fueled by Jimenez, the hard-throwing 23-year-old who allowed one run and three hits over 61/3 innings during a pitchers’ duel at Coors Field, of all places. Then, those reliable Rockies relievers silenced Philadelphia’s dangerous bats for the third straight game. The wild-card Rockies get four days off before opening the NLCS on Thursday in Arizona, the first time two teams from the NL West have met in the league championship series. “How about that? Nobody expected the Diamondbacks and Rockies to be in the National League championship this year,” Colorado rookie Troy Tulowitzki said. “But here we are.” The young Diamondbacks, also a big surprise this season, finished a first-round sweep of the Chicago Cubs earlier Saturday. NLDS: Colorado shuts down Philadelphia to advance to the NLCS. By Arnie Stapleton THE ASSOCIATED PRESS DENVER – The blackout at Coors Field was caused by a cranky computer. Blame the Philadelphia Phillies’ power outage on rookie Ubaldo Jimenez and a Colorado bullpen that has been lights out for three weeks. The Phillies rode a September surge of their own to the NL East title and their first playoff berth in 14 years. But they went flat in the postseason despite a lineup that includes Ryan Howard, Chase Utley and MVP contender Jimmy Rollins. Philadelphia hasn’t won a postseason game since Joe Carter’s famous homer off Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams to win the 1993 World Series for Toronto. The City of Brotherly Love is still looking for its first major pro sports championship since 1983. This series was supposed to be a slugfest between the NL’s two highest-scoring teams – in two of the most hitter-friendly ballparks in baseball. But the Rockies put on a pitching performance that rivaled any in recent memory, shutting down Philadelphia’s sluggers time and time again. They did it with a rotation that featured ace Jeff Francis and two rookies, plus a bullpen that has become dominant over the last three incredible weeks. This was the first time the Rockies won a game at Coors Field while scoring only one or two runs since July 9, 2005, when they beat San Diego, 1-0. “They are on one of the most amazing streaks I have seen a team have at the end of the season,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. After rallying against career saves leader Trevor Hoffman in the bottom of the 13th inning to beat San Diego, 8-6, in a wild-card tiebreaker Monday, the Rockies quickly dispatched Philadelphia for the first playoff series win in their 15-year history. Colorado’s only other postseason appearance was a loss to Atlanta in the 1995 division series. On Saturday night, the Rockies earned their first win in a home playoff game. This also was the first postseason game in Colorado since the humidor was introduced in 2002 to keep baseballs from drying up in Denver’s thin air. The ballpark has lost much of its reputation as the “Coors Canaveral” launching pad ever since, but the problem for hitters on this night wasn’t moisturized baseballs but strong winds, strange weather and a bizarre blackout.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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