The Arizona Diamondbacks suffered a 5-4 loss to the Cleveland Indians on Thursday afternoon in front of a sellout crowd at Salt River Fields.
Despite the loss, outfielder Adam Eaton continues to be a bright spot for the club in the field and at the plate as a leadoff hitter. Thursday he was 2-for-3 with one run scored. In 59 at-bats this spring, he's hitting .390 with 10 RBI and 12 runs scored. Eaton has been hitting lead-off this spring and that's a spot manager Kirk Gibson is hoping to get consistent production from.
Diamondbacks starting pitcher Ian Kennedy struggled Thursday and was a bit inconsistent. He allowed three runs to start the game in the top of the first and back-to-back doubles to start the second inning, giving the Indians a 4-1 lead early in the game. Kennedy, who is scheduled to start Opening Day for the D-backs, allowed five runs on nine hits and struck out seven over five innings over work.
He Said it:
Manager Kirk Gibson addressed Kennedy's outing.
"Well he struggled, obviously left some balls out over the plate and I didn't think he got his off-speed stuff over early, got behind, left a few fast balls out over the plate and they beat on him pretty good. He got a little frustrated as well, but overall his arm is good, he's throwing the ball good, his velocity is good today."
The Diamondbakcs travel to Goodyear to face the Indians again on Friday. Trevor Cahill will make the start but Patrick Corbin and J.J. Putz are also scheduled to throw. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.
Another note on the pitching for Friday, Corbin continues to battle Randall Delgado for the fifth spot in the starting rotation. If Putz throws on Friday, it will be the first time he's appeared in back-to-back this spring season.
Manager Kirk Gibson also said they're getting to that point in spring training where guys are dragging a little bit. The "week before the week." Gibby was referring to starter Ian Kennedy's outing, but the same could be said for the entire roster. The team reported to Spring Training in February and is getting close to the start of the regular season.