LeMahieu hopes to solve Rockies problems in two-hole

LeMahieu hopes to solve Rockies problems in two-hole

DENVER -- Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu aided his cause to lock up a steady place in the lineup Friday, when he went 2-for-4 in a 10-inning loss to the Dodgers.

LeMahieu reached base on a single in the bottom of the ninth, before Todd Helton belted a towering pinch-hit, game-tying home run to right field. The loss ended a brief slump for the 24-year-old LeMahieu, who entered with just one hit in his previous 11 at-bats.

His first hit of the night was a double off Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw in the seventh and instilled an extra touch of confidence in LeMahieu.

"Getting a hit off Kershaw, he's one of the best in the league," LeMahieu said. "So getting a double off him, I know I can get a hit off anybody."

Manager Walt Weiss penciled LeMahieu into the two-hole Saturday in the second leg of a three-game series with the Dodgers, his fourth game in that spot. Though he has hit just .154 when hitting second, if LeMahieu maintains Friday's pace, he could solve the Rockies' season-long struggle to find a consistent bat in that spot.

"He's been trying to find it a little bit offensively for a week or so, but looks like he's right back to being himself," Weiss said. "He's a guy I like in that two-hole because he can hit the ball to the right side of the field, he's going to make contact."

In 15 games, LeMahieu is batting a steady .295 with three doubles and three RBIs. He has hit from six different spots in the lineup this year, and said that experience makes him equally comfortable wherever Weiss slots him.

"I feel like this lineup changes all the time and I know the skipper likes to change it up a lot," he said. "So wherever I'm hitting, I'm going to take the same approach."

Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Ian McCue is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Read Harding's blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.