For a guy who wasn’t even expected to make the 15-hour trip to Australia, left-hander Wade Miley had himself a nice outing in the Arizona Diamdonbacks’ 3-1 season-opening loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers at Sydney Cricket Ground.
Miley, who was called upon at the last minute to replace Patrick Corbin as the D-backs’ Opening Day starter, gave up three earned runs on three hits Saturday but also struck out eight batters — tying the single-game season high he recorded three different times in 2013.
After a perfect opening inning in which he struck out the first two Dodgers batters he faced, the Arizona southpaw got into some trouble with a lead-off walk of Adrian Gonzalez in the second. Left fielder Scott Van Slyke made Miley pay three pitches later, as he belted a 1-1 fastball to the left field wall.
Because the wind was blowing in, Van Slyke’s long fly ball stayed in the yard — a result that seemed to surprise D-backs left fielder Mark Trumbo, who attempted to make a play on it only to come up noticeably empty-handed.
Two batters later, Andre Either scored Gonzalez on an RBI groundout for the game’s first run.
After another perfect frame by Miley in the third inning, Van Slyke got the best of the D-backs left-hander yet again. Following a wild pitch that allowed Gonzalez to reach first on a strikeout, the Dodgers 27-year-old outfielder sliced a 1-1 offering just inside the right field foul pole for a two-run shot.
Miley didn’t allow another run the rest of the evening, as he managed to get out of a bases-loaded jam in the fifth with a timely inning-ending strikeout.
In all, Miley threw 54 of his 83 pitches for strikes but took the loss for Arizona — just his second against Los Angeles in eight career starts.