Rockies’ rookie pitcher nearly no-hits Chicago

The Associated Press

DENVER (AP) — German Marquez’s fastball was dancing. His curve, almost untouchable. And after a diving catch by Carlos Gonzalez in the sixth, well, Marquez’s mind couldn’t help but wonder.

“I thought about it,” Marquez said of a no-hitter.

Marquez allowed three hits over eight innings and got his first major league hit with a two-run single in the seventh to lead the Colorado Rockies over the Chicago Cubs 3-0 on Wednesday.

“For a young man against the world champions to do this, I mean, pretty special game,” said Rockies manager Bud Black, whose team is off to its best 35-game start at 22-13.

Marquez had a no-hit bid going until Kris Bryant’s double leading off the seventh. He walked Kyle Schwarber in the first and retired 16 straight before Bryant’s hit to left.

The Cubs fell to 17-17 and into fourth place in the National League Central. They didn’t lose their 17th game last season until June.

The 22-year-old Marquez (1-2) struck out eight by mixing in a mid-90s fastball with an assortment of breaking pitches. The Cubs acknowledged they didn’t know much about him before.

“You have to give the kid credit — he was on today and we had nothing to show for it,” Bryant said.

Greg Holland threw a perfect ninth for his 14th save in as many chances to help the Rockies take two of three from Chicago.

“The game should have been 0-0. We made the one mistake at shortstop and the unlikely single by the pitcher on an 0-2 count,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “Wow.”