Diamondbacks 3, Dodgers 2
“I feel like I can go out there and win every ballgame with three runs,” Webb said after pitching the Diamondbacks to a 3-2 win over the Dodgers on Wednesday night. “So I try to keep it down below one to two runs for seven or eight innings, and I’ve been able to do that.”
Webb (13-11), who has worked into the seventh inning for 10 consecutive starts, tied his career high with 11 strikeouts in 7 2-3 innings. He allowed two runs on nine hits, including a two-run homer by Hee-Seop Choi in the third, and did not issue a walk for the third time in 31 starts—first occasion since June 23 at San Francisco.
However, he ran into trouble in the eighth after striking out the first two batters. Pinch-hitter Brian Myrow singled to left field and went to second on rookie Willy Aybar’s season-high fourth hit, a hard comebacker that popped out of Webb’s glove.
Jose Valverde replaced Webb and got Choi to ground out to end the inning, and then finished up for his 10th save in 12 chances.
“He gave us what we needed,” manager Bob Melvin said about Webb. “The ball was diving probably more so than we’ve seen, with the amount of strikeouts that you saw. I’ve said many times, there are sinkers, and then there’s what he throws up there.”
Brad Penny lasted only 10 pitches in two-thirds of an inning for the Dodgers, who lost their fifth straight and seventh in eight games.
He wasn’t sharp after experiencing what the club said was tightness in his right forearm. Penny came out with Royce Clayton on second and Glaus on first after solid base hits, and the two outs he got were sharp liners to right field by Craig Counsell and Tracy.
Giovanni Carrara got the next seven outs for the Dodgers, but not before allowing a single to Clayton and Glaus’ 37th homer, a 426-foot shot into a camera well in the center-field wall in the third.
Dodgers manager Jim Tracy didn’t believe the forearm problem had anything to do with the nerve injury in Penny’s right bicep on Aug. 8, 2004, that sidelined him for the rest of last season.
“Tightness in the forearm is what I was told,” Tracy said. “He didn’t respond in any way, shape or form in the manner he did when he had that situation come up a year ago.”
Penny was the second starter from a visiting team in five games to leave hurt in the first inning—a liner by Counsell broke the thumb on Zach Day’s pitching hand Friday, ending the Colorado starter’s outing on his second pitch.
Tracy broke a 2-2 tie with his triple in the fifth. His liner off Franquelis Osoria, the third Dodgers pitcher, rolled around the in the right-field corner, allowing Counsell to score from first.
“The guy was a big sinkerball guy, and threw me a changeup out over the plate and I was a little bit out front, you know, hooking it down the line,” Tracy said. “I don’t know what happened out there when it got to the fence, but I know the corner out there is pretty rough.”
Osoria (0-2) worked three innings, giving up two hits.
Webb settled in after Choi’s homer in Los Angeles’ half of the third, retiring seven straight and striking out the side in the fourth and fifth.
“He’s a good pitcher,” Aybar said. “He threw a lot of strikes (76 of 110).”
Aybar broke the string with an infield hit leading off the sixth, but was erased in a double play—one of four turned by the Diamondbacks to tie a franchise record.
The Diamondbacks have turned four double plays eight times, last on June 19 at Cleveland. … Choi’s homer was his 15th, matching his career-best done last year. … Aybar has hit safely in 10 of his 11 major league starts. … Umpire Peter Durfee, who made his major league debut Sunday because of an injury to Gary Darling, was a late substitute for home-plate ump Mike DiMuro (bad back). Durfee worked at 3B, with other members of the crew sliding over one base. Brian Gorman moved from 1B to HP. … Glaus scored his career 600th run with his homer.