DENVER — Colorado Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez was activated from the disabled list Friday after he missed 35 games because of left index finger inflammation.
He was 1-for-4 with a run scored in Colorado’s 6-2 win over the Minnesota Twins.
His hit was a single ahead of shortstop Troy Tulowitzki’s third-inning home run, and he made two sparkling defensive plays in right field: a sliding catch in foul territory on a popup by Eduardo Nunez and a fast throw to third base on the fly to nail Brian Dozier.
“It was good to see them out there together,” Rockies manager Walt Weiss said of Gonzalez and Tulowitzki.
“CarGo impacted the game right away, with his defense,” Weiss added. “It’s just nice to have that presence in the lineup.”
To make roster room for Gonzalez, the Rockies optioned right-handed pitcher Jair Jurrjens to their Triple-A affiliate in Colorado Springs.
Gonzalez, sidelined since June 3, underwent finger surgery a week later after doctors discovered a benign tumor.
“He has some peace of mind with that finger,” Weiss said before the game. “The first part of the season, that finger was blowing up. For no rhyme or reason. All of a sudden, in the middle of the game, he would make solid contact or hit the ball off the end of the bat, that finger would swell up. It was obviously an issue going on.”
Before rejoining the Rockies, Gonzalez made four rehab appearances with Colorado Springs this week.
“I’m feeling good,” Gonzalez said before the game. “I’m happy being back in the lineup. I took my time. It’s a slow process. I was careful after the surgery. It paid off.”
The time off also helped alleviate lingering soreness from left knee tendinitis that had bothered him for much of the season. Gonzalez was batting .255 in 52 games. He entered this season with a career average of .300.
“The time off has certainly helped his knee,” Weiss said. “It is something that has hindered him from time to time. The time off is going to help that.”
Gonzalez, who usually plays left field, started in right field and batted third.
Jurrjens was 0-1 with a 10.61 ERA in two starts for the Rockies.