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COL@MIL: Chacin picks off Gomez in the second

There's just something off about Sunday matchups for the Rockies.

The team struggled last year, going a staggering 5-22 on Sundays, and wasn't much better the year before, as the Rockies went 6-19 to set a Major League record when they dropped 17 straight Sunday contests.

It's a confusing problem to solve, but Rockies manager Walt Weiss and company had a plan. Just move back the starting time.

"That factored into some of the things that we had heard, that getting a little more sleep would be helpful in terms of our rest and recovery, and sometimes [after] playing deep into the night [on Saturdays]," Bill Geivett, the Rockies' senior vice president of Major League operations said. "We really feel having another hour would definitely be beneficial."

It's only proper that the Rockies will try to spearhead their Sunday bounceback with Jhoulys Chancin, who's had his own awakening after a slow Spring Training.

The Rockies hope the extra time will help him carry on his solid pitching. The right-hander allowed one run and three hits through 6 2/3 innings against the Brewers in their Opening Day loss. He'll look to lead his club to its first series sweep of the season at 2:10 p.m. MT Sunday at Coors Field, one hour later than last year's Sunday matchups.

"Rest and recovery is important here," said Weiss. "It's been well-documented. That's part of the equation. For me, the challenge is balancing all those things and at the same time trying to win."

They'll need all the rest they can get going up against the Padres' Edinson Volquez, who will look to shake off his rocky start.

Still high off his World Baseball Classic win with the Dominican Republic, the right-hander struggled on Opening Day, allowing six runs on six hits in his three innings.

Padres manager Bud Black said he fully expects Volquez to use his plus changeup more than he did against the Mets.

"He will throw more, you can take that to the bank," Black said. "The other day in New York, his head was coming off the target," Black said. "The key for him is to keep it on a line. Greg Maddux was one of the best at that. Edinson comes off that when his head comes off the target. Then his front shoulder flies open."

The former All-Star will look to put a dent in his inflated season ERA. In his career, Volquez is 3-3 against the Rockies, with one no-decision. He earned a 4.62 ERA and 40 strikeouts through 37 innings.

Padres: Headley Optimistic

Third baseman Chase Headley could have a better idea of when he'll be able to ready to return to the Padres lineup come Monday. Headley, who fractured his left thumb on March 17, is aiming for a quick return. That may even mean skipping a Minor League rehabilitation stint.

"This is just my goal. This isn't based on the doctors' goal, but I think there's a pretty good chance I can be playing in Major League games by the end of the month," Headley said Friday.

Rockies: After Construction

After a remodeling and construction project, Coors Field reduced the distance from home plate to the backstop by six feet. The aim was for less foul ground to assist hitters, but catcher Yorvit Torrealba said he sees it helping the defense more than the offense.

"I like it better this way," Torrealba said. "Most likely, you're going to let one ball go by you out of the many, many pitches you receive in a game. Now, what are the odds you're going to get a fly ball out as a catcher? One every however many games? It's an advantage for the catchers, and for us as a team." Comments