Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp tumbles to the warning track after slamming… (Barry Gutierrez / Associated…)
DENVER — Matt Kemp had left Coors Field before the Dodgers' 8-4 loss to the last-place Colorado Rockies was final, his right knee bruised and his jaw stitched from a head-on crash with the center-field wall in the first inning.
As the Dodgers tried to make sense of how they'd lost three consecutive games with Adrian Gonzalez in their lineup and dropped 31/2 games back of first-place San Francisco in the National League West, their minds were also on Kemp's test results.
Kemp was scheduled to undergo an MRI exam on his knee and a CAT scan on his jaw Tuesday night.
"Hopefully, it's just a precautionary thing," right fielder Andre Ethier said.
Manager Don Mattingly said he expected Kemp to miss at least the series finale against the Rockies on Wednesday.
There were reasons to be optimistic.
Kemp didn't exhibit any concussion-like symptoms. He also remained in the game for two more at-bats in what turned into a four-run first inning for the Rockies, futilely diving for a double by Jordan Pacheco and fielding a single by Wilin Rosario.
"That's probably where he felt his knee," Mattingly said.
The collision occurred on the second at-bat of the game, when Josh Rutledge hit a changeup from Chris Capuano over Kemp's head. Kemp pursued the ball and crashed full speed into the wall, which came up to his neck. He used his left arm to protect his face from the chain-link fence above the wall, but fell straight back, rolled over and crumpled to the warning track.
"He goes out there and plays hard with no regard for his body," Capuano said. "You like that as a pitcher, you like to see guys going after it like that. But your heart just sinks when he hits the wall so hard."
Kemp also ran into the wall Monday night and appeared to hurt his hand.
Mattingly and the players prepared themselves for the worst Tuesday.
"He hit it at full speed, it looked like," Mattingly said. "I'm thinking concussion. You hit something straight, you're not going to tear up a knee, but with that kind of impact, you never know."
Shortstop Hanley Ramirez rushed to the outfield to check on Kemp, with whom he has become friendly since his trade from the Miami Marlins last month.
"That's my boy," Ramirez said. "I saw him hit the wall and he went straight down."
Kemp lay on the ground as one trainer wiped blood from his chin. Another stretched out his legs. Mattingly stood by his side, as did Ramirez, Ethier and left fielder Shane Victorino.
Kemp never lost consciousness.
"He was actually kind of funny," Mattingly said.
"I'm not coming out of this game," Mattingly said Kemp told him. "I'm not coming out of this game."
Capuano was charged with four runs in the first inning, one in the third and one in the fourth. He gave up 10 hits in six innings and left trailing, 6-2.
Capuano was 9-2 in his first 15 starts. He is 2-8 since.
Asked what had changed, Mattingly said, "It sees like a little bit of crispness with the fastball."
Capuano didn't dismiss the theory. "He could be onto something," he said. "Maybe I need to establish the fastball a little more."
Former Angel Tyler Chatwood started for the Rockies and held the Dodgers to two runs and five hits over five innings.
Ramirez and Ethier each went two for four, with Ramirez hitting a solo home run in the ninth inning.