Diamondbacks 11, Marlins 6

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PHOENIX (AP)—The Arizona Diamondbacks finally gave Randy Johnson the support he needed.

Johnson pitched solid six innings to end his three-game losing skid and Roberto Alomar had four hits with three RBIs to lead the Diamondbacks past the Florida Marlins 11-6 Wednesday night.

Johnson received just 10 runs of support in his last five starts—going 0-3, but the Diamondbacks led 8-1 before he gave up Alex Gonzalez’s three-run homer in a four-run sixth.

“It’s real important to score runs,” Alomar said. “I think it helps the pitcher relax more and it makes us more comfortable in the second.”

Alomar was 4-for-5 with a double and a homer for Arizona, which won consecutive games for the first time since June 30-July 1 against San Diego. The Diamondbacks’ 11 runs were their most since an 11-5 win over San Francisco on June 3.

Making his first start since the trading deadline passed on Saturday, Johnson (11-9) gave up five runs, seven hits and two walks while matching a season low for strikeouts with four, done five times.

“The first few innings I cruised along but then I realized I had a lot of pitches,” Johnson said. “I wore down pretty quick. I labored through it and I got through it.”

Arizona had its own four-run inning in the second, with help from some shoddy Florida defense.

Alex Cintron led off with a double to left-center off Josh Beckett (4-7) and Juan Brito reached when his grounder bounced off first baseman Jeff Conine’s glove and between his legs for an error.

Conine committed his second straight error when Johnson tried to bunt the runners over, quickly getting to the ball between the mound and home plate but throwing low to shortstop Gonzalez at second base to load the bases.

“I felt like we were going to get to him (Johnson) but you can’t give five or six outs an inning and expect to do much,” Florida manager Jack McKeon said.

Quinton McCracken then doubled past a diving Juan Encarnacion, scoring Cintron and Brito to extend an early one-run lead to 4-1.

Beckett struck out the next two batters but Shea Hillenbrand blooped a two-run double into shallow right field to make it 6-1.

Beckett allowed eight runs—five earned—on nine hits over four innings with six strikeouts and a walk.

“He didn’t pitch good but he didn’t pitch as bad as the stats show,” McKeon said.

The right-hander has allowed 12 runs—nine earned—on 15 hits in seven innings over his last two starts and has lost his last four decisions.

“It’s tough,” Beckett said. “I put the blame all on me. It’s hard to come back five runs down after two innings. The results are bad but physically I feel OK. It’s not mechanics. It’s not executing pitches. When you don’t execute pitches, that’s what happens.”

Arizona scored two runs in the first, fourth and seventh innings and added a run in the sixth on Alomar’s third homer.

Alomar was making his 22nd start of the season at second base.

“It’s tough,” Alomar said. “I’ve been in this game a long time and I want to play. When you’re on the bench you can’t do anything but sit and watch. But I have to prepare myself for whenever they give me the opportunity to play and to play good when they do.”

The Marlins rallied for four runs in the sixth, pulling to 8-5 on an RBI single by Miguel Cabrera and Gonzalez’s two-out, three-run homer.

Notes

Alomar recorded his 34th career four-hit game. … Beckett’s last win was May 20 versus Houston—six starts. … Tracy was 2-for-4 with a double, three RBIs and a walk. … The Diamondback’s four-run second was their biggest since scoring five runs in the fourth inning against Minnesota on July 2. … Conine had only one error in 88 previous games. He played just five games at first in that span. … Luis Terrero committed his third error in 10 games. … The Marlins have lost 11 straight games against teams with losing records. … Johnson received a standing ovation after hitting a fifth-inning double.

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