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Arizona's Corbin beats Atlanta, improves to 6-0

The SportsXchange

PHOENIX -- Patrick Corbin is climbing all sorts of charts with his strong start this season, including one with Hall of Famer-in-waiting Randy Johnson's name attached.

Corbin joined Johnson as the second left-hander in Arizona history to start 6-0 when he threw seven shutout innings in the Diamondbacks' 2-0 victory over Atlanta on Tuesday.

"Our job is to go out there -- we don't want to lose -- and put up a W," Corbin said when told of the Johnson comparison. "That's what I've been trying to do every single time out."

Corbin (6-0) remained the only pitcher in the majors to go six innings or more and give up two runs or less in all of his starts this season.

Corbin walked a career-high five but was helped by three double plays while lowering his ERA to 1.52, third in the majors behind the Los Angeles Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw and the New York Mets' Matt Harvey. The D-backs (22-18) have won all eight of Corbin's starts.

"He just battled," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "When he has to make pitches, he misses where he is not going to get hurt. He is very good at that. He uses both sides of the plate very well. He misses a lot way inside. It's certainly one of his strengths. He does that better than anybody on our staff."

Didi Gregorius singled in the D-backs' only runs in the third inning. It was the team's only hit with runners in scoring position in the first two games of the series. Eric Chavez added two hits.

Gregorius' single to center field was set up by possibly the shortest double in Arizona history. After Cliff Pennington opened with a single, Gerardo Parra hit a one-out grounder to the right of the mound. The ball rolled untouched between pitcher Julio Teheran (1-2) and first baseman Freddie Freeman. It got past second baseman Dan Uggla, who was hustling to cover first base, and stopped just into the outfield grass. Parra made second for a double while Pennington took third.

"It was a difficult play," said Teheran, who gave up six hits and struck out three in six innings. "As soon as he hit the ball I was trying to get it, but I was thinking he (Freeman) was going to get a double play. That is how we got confused."

Gregorius followed with a two-run single, his first hit in 10 at-bats with runners in scoring position this season.

"All you want to do is try to put the ball in play," he said. "As long as you can do that, you never know what is going to happen. It might fall, get a base hit, move the runner over. That's all you have to do."

Reed Johnson singled, doubled and walked for Atlanta (23-17), which has lost four of its last five games. Atlanta got only three runners as far as second base.

"I thought our hitters (had) a great plan of attack against them and hit some balls hard. That is all you can do really," Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "We had people on base almost every inning. That's the nature of the game sometimes."

Justin Upton, who had four hits Monday in his return to Arizona, took a called third strike from David Hernandez with a runner on first base to end the eighth inning.

Heath Bell pitched the ninth for his fifth save.

NOTES: Atlanta CF B.J. Upton was held out of the lineup Tuesday after being hit in the left shoulder by a pitch in the sixth inning Monday. "I think he could have gone if we needed him to. Should be able to run him back in there tomorrow," Gonzalez said. Upton is hitting .151 with three homers and six RBI. ... D-backs IF/OF Martin Prado made his fifth start in left field Tuesday. He is the only major-leaguer with at least five starts at third base (22), second base (10) and left field this season. He has been needed at second base because 2B Aaron Hill has been sidelined since April 15 with a hand injury. ... RHP Tim Hudson, who is scheduled to start Wednesday at Arizona, is 7-0 with a 1.33 ERA in nine starts against the D-backs. Hudson, who has 201 victories, has given up two earned runs in his last 38 innings against the D-backs, dating to a 2-1 victory on May 21, 2006.
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