PITTSBURGH -- Rockies closer Huston Street, up in the zone and over the plate while blowing the save and taking the loss in Saturday's 8-7 defeat to the Pirates, will not be used on Sunday, Rockies manager Jim Tracy said.

The decision had everything to do with Street having appeared in three straight games, not with his performance on Saturday, when he gave up three runs on a walk and two hits, including Pedro Alvarez's game-winning, three-run homer.

The difficult balance has been the workload for Street, who missed the first 69 games with right shoulder and right groin injuries. Street had given up three runs in two of his last four appearances. In those, he walked three batters, all of whom scored.

Fatigue might be a concern, but Street needs regular work to stay sharp. That was borne out last year when he struggled in April but ended up converting 35-of-37 save chances during the regular season.

"To sit here and say he is completely sharp would be somewhat of a misnomer." Tracy said. "Periodically, the ball has been up. He's not as sharp as he was this time last year, and 20 innings might've had something to do with that.

"He was feeling his way along in the early part of the season last year, and then locked it in. Unfortunately, we went through the first three months of this season and I never wrote his name on the lineup card."

Street insisted he isn't tired.

"I feel like I've had plenty of time off. In the second half, I've had long stretches where I've been off," Street said. "It's three or four days off, pitch, three or four days off, pitch. So I've had plenty of rest. I was telling somebody I feel I'm better when I get more work."

Stewart comes through on road again

PITTSBURGH -- Rockies third baseman Ian Stewart was in as good a mood as could be expected Sunday morning, after seeing his big moment erased Saturday night.

Stewart's game-tying, three-run homer in the ninth inning was rendered trivial by Pedro Alvarez's three-run shot in the 10th to give the Pirates an 8-7 victory at PNC Park.

"It was one of the better performances we've had on the road," Stewart said. "It's hard to take positives from a loss when you continue to struggle with something, like on the road. But you don't want to be thinking negative all the time.

"It seems all the little things go against us on the road. But it's not like we're jinxed or anything. It's baseball, and it's crazy."

Stewart's home-road splits are part of the season's craziness. Entering Sunday afternoon's finale of four games with the Pirates, the Rockies hit .233 on the road and .301 at home, with more doubles (99-79), triples (23-11) and home runs (71-50) at Coors Field.

Yet, Stewart has twice as many doubles on the road (8-4), and three times as many road homers (12-4).

"I never think about it, because I don't want to try to hit home runs at home," said Stewart, who does hit for a higher average at home [.266-.253].

Manager Jim Tracy said Saturday's game, in which Stewart also doubled and had a productive groundout, could be a sign that Stewart is ready for a period of consistent production. That's been elusive for Stewart this season.

"Maybe we're at the makings of getting to where maybe this is the guy that helps to pick this club up and carry it some offensively," Tracy said. 'It's unfair to walk out here every day and feel if [Carlos] Gonzalez and [Troy] Tulowitzki don't do it, we have no chance to win. You need help from other places.

"To see Todd Helton take the swing he took in the 10th inning [for a two-run homer and a brief lead], to see Ian Stewart take the swing he took in the ninth inning, to see a couple of at-bats Brad Hawpe took, then add those other couple of names in there, it starts to lengthen you out.

"Go back to when we were in the midst of that 30-10 roll we were on last year, and who was in the middle of it? You go through St. Louis and Milwaukee, and Ian Stewart basically did that offensive damage."

Smith unlucky but OK after foul balls

PITTSBURGH -- Rockies outfielder Seth Smith was sore but available on Sunday after fouling two pitches off his right shin in the same at-bat during Saturday night's 8-7 loss to the Pirates.

"I fouled two pitches off the same spot, so it hurts pretty bad the second time," Smith said. "I'll be all right. I'll wear the shin guard for a while. I don't typically."