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Rockies lose to Nationals 5-4, also lose 3 of their top players

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DENVER — The Rockies ended Thursday afternoon awaiting MRI results on shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, who suffered an injury on the right side of his ribs while diving for an eighth-inning grounder during a 5-4 loss to the Nationals at Coors Field.

It turns out he has a broken rib and will miss at least 4-6 weeks.

Manager Walt Weiss said Tulowitzki has been dealing with rib pain recently, and it was exacerbated when he dove for Ian Desmond’s infield single. Tulowitzki held onto the ball because he didn’t have a play.

Tulowitzki, who entered the game second in the National League in hitting and has been a decisive leader in balloting for a starting spot in the All-Star Game, left the game after the inning.

Additionally, left fielder Carlos Gonzalez was hit on the left foot by a foul ball while on deck in the first inning, and center fielder Dexter Fowler was hit on his right ring finger by a pitch in the third. Gonzalez left the game immediately while Fowler played two more innings before exiting in the fifth. In both cases, X-rays were negative and they’re listed as day to day.

“When he came off, it was very evident he was done,” Weiss said about Tulowitzki.

Tulowitzki went 1-for-3 with a run scored and finished the day with a .347 batting average. He also has 16 home runs and 52 RBIs, and is a perennial Rawlings Gold Glove Award candidate.

“I didn’t even see ‘Tulo,’ really,” Fowler said. “He came in [to the clubhouse], then was out.”

The Rockies could be playing at least in the short term without Fowler, an effective leadoff hitter who is at .302 with 10 homers; Gonzalez, who leads the team with 18 homers and 52 RBIs; and Tulowitzki.

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