PHOENIX — Bronson Arroyo’s first start as an Arizona Diamondback did not go as planned.
The veteran right-hander gave up a solo home run to Brandon Belt in the first inning, and while he gave up just one more run the rest of his outing, he did not make it through five innings.
His final line of 4.1 innings pitched with two runs on five hits with two walks and three strikeouts was not enough as the bullpen ended up faltering in the 8-5 loss. The D-backs used six different pitchers in the game, getting more outs from their relievers than Arroyo.
“It’s a long season, that’s what it is,” Arroyo said. “You try to chew up as many (innings) as you can, and if you consistently do that, then you’ve done your job. And if you get knocked out like I did today before you can finish five consistently, then you haven’t.”
Arroyo exited the game with the tying run on third base and one out, but Oliver Perez replaced him and was able to get the D-backs out of the jam.
Arroyo threw 81 pitches in the outing — 51 of which went for strikes. The outing follows a spring that saw him miss time with a back issue.
“I felt good today,” he said. “I felt as good as could really ask for given the fact that I’ve had only nine or 10 innings in spring training.”
Arroyo pointed to the Giants’ lineup, which was stacked with left-handed hitters, saying that it led to things being more difficult. His manager concurred.
“He struggled,” manager Kirk Gibson said. “They had a bunch of lefties in there; he had to work hard.”
One start does not a season make, and no doubt the D-backs are expecting more from a player they signed to a multi-year contract before the season.
The 37-year-old’s track record would lead one to believe that they will get that, even if Thursday’s outing was not a particularly memorable one.
“The flow of every game can be just so different,” Arroyo said. “Sometimes it’s so easy and sometimes it’s such a grind.
“And today, regardless of the score, it was a battle for me. Just every inning, having guys on base and getting deep in counts and trying to keep us where we were.”