DENVER -- Carlos Gonzalez experienced a setback of sorts when he pinch-hit for the Rockies in the eighth inning Sunday.
CarGo was on the bench with a tight left hamstring for the third game in a row and the fifth of the Rockies' last six games. For the second consecutive game, he entered in the late innings to pinch-hit, striking out in the ninth on Saturday and grounding into a fielder's choice in the eighth inning Sunday.
"It's not very good," CarGo said of his left leg after beating out the double play, but noticeably favoring the ailing leg. "I thought I was getting better, but you don't know until you run. I tried to go full speed to avoid another double play, but same thing."
The Rockies have been hopeful that by giving CarGo time to nurse the injury, he could return to the field before the season ends and end 2012 on a positive note. The down side is starting to look like it's not worth the risk of finishing the season on the field, and the Rockies may well decide to shut him down rather than risk further injury.
"I haven't talked to [head athletic trainer Keith Dugger] yet," manager Jim Tracy said after removing CarGo for a pinch-runner in the eighth. "I don't know where we're going to be as we continue to move forward, because he didn't go down the line very well at all. You can tell he was favoring that thing pretty bad, and your concern was that when he hit the ball, knowing that they're going to try to turn the double play, that little extra effort that you give when it's already somewhat tender -- I think we dodged a bullet there from fully pulling it."
As his beating out the double play demonstrated, it's hard for a player like CarGo to throttle back and give less effort in the heat of the moment.
"I don't feel worse -- I feel the same," CarGo said. "The same is not good enough to play. Especially in my position. I have to play in the outfield and run all over the place. I don't feel I can make plays in the outfield like I normally do."