DENVER -- A warm night at Coors Field did nothing to cure the Giants' offensive ills. Throw in another rough road start for Barry Zito, and Friday night's series opener ended up being a familiar story.
The Giants lost to the Rockies 4-1, dropping to 0-4 on their 10-game trip and falling three games under .500. In their past 25 innings at Coors Field, as inviting a haven for hitters as there is, the Giants have scored just two runs.
After watching his lineup get held under four runs for the seventh time in eight games, manager Bruce Bochy said he feels his hitters are pressing.
"They're trying to get out of this, and when you're in something like this it's human nature to start pressing," he said. "Everybody wants to do something to spark the club. We're doing what we can to get this club going, but it's contagious."
Against Jhoulys Chacin, only Buster Posey was able to stay out of sick bay. Posey had three hits, including a ninth-inning homer that kept the Giants from being shut out at Coors Field for the second straight time. The rest of the Giants were 1 for 27.
"It takes two or three guys to get it going and keep the line moving," Bochy said. "We've got too many guys struggling. That line is stopping. Every club goes through this, but this is a little longer than we've ever had."
Bochy talked to his team after Monday's loss in Los Angeles and said he would do so again, but he knows that there's only so much to be said.
"At some point," he said. "It's going to take somebody to spark this club, and we're missing that spark."
The Giants have had their share of injuries, but against the Rockies on Friday that excuse wasn't going to fly. Colorado remains without superstar shortstop Troy Tulowitzki (broken rib), and leadoff hitter Dexter Fowler was a late scratch because of a sore hand.
Still, the Rockies were able to jump on Zito early. The left-hander entered the night with an 11.28 ERA on the road this season and gave up a first-inning run on Carlos Gonzalez's double. Michael Cuddyer made it 3-0 in the third with an opposite-field homer that extended his hitting streak to 25 games, a Rockies record. Four pitches later, Wilin Rosario lined a hanging changeup just over the left-field wall.
Asked about putting his team in another early hole, Zito said he thought that might have contributed to the offensive malaise.
"They have that stat of when someone scores first, what their record is," he said. "That's a telling thing. There's a tendency to try to do too much if you're already in a hole in the first inning. I take responsibility for that."
The Giants are 24-12 when they score first and 14-29 when they don't. Their best chance came and went in the fourth when DJ LeMahieu made a diving stop of Brandon Belt's two-out, two-on liner to second.
"We haven't played that well, that's all there is to it," Belt said. "And it seems that those plays happen when you're not playing well."
Despite the struggles, the Giants have displayed one trend that shows Bochy his club hasn't stopped fighting. For the third straight game, the Giants brought the tying run to the plate in the ninth inning, but for the third straight time they couldn't capitalize. Friday's game ended when Brandon Crawford grounded out with runners on first and second.
"That ninth inning, it's like 'Here we go,' " Bochy said. "But that's too late sometimes."
Zito, the losing pitcher for the fifth time in six road starts, pointed out that the Giants were still lucky in a way. With another Arizona Diamondbacks loss, the Giants remain just four games out of first place. They have lost just a half-game during the winless trip.
"The division hasn't gotten totally out of hand," Zito said. "It could be a lot worse from that standpoint."
The right-hander pitched for four big league teams and had a 3.18 ERA in 44 relief appearances for the Giants in 2009. He also spent two seasons in the A's organization, playing with Triple A Sacramento in 2000 and 2001.