After returning from a 2-4 road trip, members of the Colorado Rockies (37-60) spent their day off yesterday visiting victims of the Aurora shooting at Denver area hospitals. Tonight they open a 3-game weekend series against the National League Central leading Cincinnati Reds (58-40) at 6:40 at Coors Field (TV: Root Sports).

The Reds, winners of seven in a row, sit in first place in the National League Central. The Rockies, who have won two series since taking two of three from the Dodgers June 1-3, are 17 1/2 games behind in the NL West.

Right-handed pitcher Bronson Arroyo will start for Cincinnati on Friday. Arroyo (5-6, 3.98 ERA) allowed two earned runs over six innings in his last start. In Arroyo's past 10 outings, he has held opponents to three runs or fewer six times.

Drew Pomeranz, who experienced left arm soreness during his start last Friday night, was skipped during his normal turn in the rotation on Tuesday, but he has been throwing without pain and will return to face Arroyo and the Reds.

"We just want to get him back out there pitching. That's how he is going to learn," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "We wanted to make sure that physically nothing is wrong and get him back out there. On Friday, it will have been a week."

Tracy gave All-Star outfielder Carlos Gonzalez the night off Wednesday. With the Rockies off on Thursday, Gonzalez will have had a full two days to recharge his batteries. Gonzalez has a .289 batting average (13-for-51) with two doubles, a triple and three home runs since the All-Star break. He's 4-for-17 with seven strikeouts in his last five games.

The Reds lead the season series against the Rockies, 2-1.

Tickets are available for tonight's game at Coors Field vs. the Cincinnati Reds, and can be purchased by calling (800) 388-ROCK, or click here.

[ColoradoRockies.com]