DENVER -- Rockies left-handed pitcher Jorge De La Rosa threw 60 pitches in 3 1/3 difficult innings, during which he gave up two home runs in an injury rehab start Sunday for Triple-A Colorado Springs at Fresno.
De La Rosa, recovering from Tommy John elbow surgery last May, was making his first start since May 17, when he experienced left forearm tightness while pitching for Double-A Tulsa. The injury caused the Rockies to end his rehab assignment and start him on a new one, which has a 30-day limit under MLB rules. On Sunday, De La Rosa gave up four hits, including home runs to Giants farmhands Justin Christian and Jackson Williams in Colorado Springs' 8-3 loss.
Rockies manager Jim Tracy said he expected the inconsistencies. De La Rosa threw just 32 strikes and finished with two walks and two strikeouts. Tracy cautioned against anyone expecting De La Rosa -- 29-12 from June 9, 2009, until he was injured last May 24 -- to rescue a starting staff marked by youth and wildness.
"I do not perceive Jorge De La Rosa to be some type of savior when he shows up here," Tracy said. "I've tried to make that clear. He's coming back from a serious arm surgery. We have to allow him to evolve, just like we have to allow anybody else. To think he was going to walk up here and pick up where he left off, pitching like he was pitching in 2009 and 2010, that's a ludicrous thought.
"We're going to be on a roller coaster with this guy. That's all part of recovering from this type of surgery. If it goes well, in 2013 he would have a chance to returning and being a very special guy again. Maybe he'll shock us. But if we experience up-and-down with Jorge De La Rosa, I'm not going to be disappointed. That comes with the territory."