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National League Preview from The Sports Network

Sunday, July 17th (All times eastern)

Milwaukee Brewers (50-45) at Colorado Rockies (45-49), 3:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Milwaukee - Shaun Marcum (7-3, 3.39) Colorado - Aaron Cook (0-4, 5.82)

(Sports Network) - The Milwaukee Brewers have lost each of Shaun Marcum's last five starts and hope to squelch that trend this afternoon in the finale of a four-game series against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

Marcum is 1-2 with a 4.79 earned run average in his last nine outings, with the Brewers going just 1-8 in that stretch. Marcum previously toed the rubber in an 8-4 loss to Cincinnati on July 9, when he allowed three runs and six hits in six innings. He has given up at least three runs in each of his last three trips to the hill and is 7-3 with a 3.39 ERA in 19 starts.

The right-hander defeated Colorado on May 21 this season with eight innings of one-run ball and eight strikeouts. Marcum is 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA in two career games (1 start) in this matchup.

Milwaukee squeezed out an 8-7 win in Colorado last night thanks to All-Star Rickie Weeks' two-run homer off of Rockies closer Huston Street in the top of the ninth inning. Corey Hart also hit a two-run homer and Nyjer Morgan ended with two hits and an RBI for the Brewers, who ended a two-game slide and won for the fifth time in eight tries.

"It's always good to get the game-winning home run, regardless of the situation," Weeks told his club's site. "That felt good right there."

Weeks' blast made a winner out of newcomer Francisco Rodriguez, who tossed a scoreless eighth inning in his Milwaukee debut. Rodriguez was dealt to the Brewers from the New York Mets last week and recently restructured his contract. John Axford got the save and allowed Todd Helton's RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning. Starter Zack Greinke gave up three unearned runs in six innings for the no-decision.

The Brewers are just a half-game behind St. Louis for the NL Central lead, while Pittsburgh is only a game off the pace. Milwaukee is 1-2 on an 11-game road trip against the Rockies, Diamondbacks and Giants, and could be without All-Star outfielder Ryan Braun today after he left in the sixth inning Saturday with tightness in his left hamstring and calf. Braun's career-high 23-game hitting streak ended Friday and he missed the final eight games before the All-Star break with a strained left calf.

"I can't run yet, to be honest with you," Braun said on the team's site. "I can't run yet at all. I'm unable to run, so I just jog as quickly as I can whenever the situation warrants it. Whenever I can avoid running or putting any extra stress on it, I think that's in my best interest and the team's best interest."

Colorado had won two straight and four of five games before dropping a one-run decision last night to the Brewers. Street served up the home run to Weeks in the ninth inning to absorb the loss, while starter Jhoulys Chacin avoided a decision after he was reached for five runs and seven hits in 6 1/3 innings.

Helton ended with two hits and three RBI, while Troy Tulowitzki, Chris Iannetta and Chacin each knocked in a run in defeat -- Colorado's seventh in its last 11 contests.

"We battled all night long. There's no getting around that," said Rockies manager Jim Tracy.

The Rockies, who sit 8 1/2 games off the lead in the NL West, are 2-1 on this eight-game homestand and will also welcome the Atlanta Braves to Denver. They will send Aaron Cook to the mound Sunday and he's 0-4 with a 5.82 ERA in six starts this season. He was last in action in a 9-1 loss at Atlanta on July 6, when he permitted a season-high seven runs and 10 hits in five innings.

Cook, a right-hander, is 0-2 in three home starts and 6-3 with a 3.13 ERA in 12 career games (11 starts) against the Brewers.

Milwaukee swept a three-game set from Colorado in late May at Miller Park.

07/17 10:32:58 ET

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