Wade Miley is headed to the All-Star game, but he hopes his last outing was just a road block during a stellar first full season in the majors.
The left-hander looks to bounce back from the worst start of his young career while trying to help the Diamondbacks avoid a season-high sixth consecutive loss Thursday night against the NL West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers at Chase Field.
Miley (9-4, 2.87 ERA) has been one of the majors' biggest surprises in 2012, going 8-4 with a 2.85 ERA in 13 starts since opening the season in the bullpen. That success earned him a spot on the NL All-Star roster.
"It's awesome," Miley told the Diamondbacks' official website. "It's just an honor to have your named called with all the guys who are going to be there."
He allowed four runs in 30 2-3 innings in his previous four starts before he was roughed up for eight runs and three of the seven homers he's allowed this season over 3 2-3 innings of a 10-2 loss at Milwaukee on Saturday."Wade is a human being," catcher Miguel Montero said. "You're going to have games like that."
The Diamondbacks hope that's all it is as Miley tries to rebound against a Dodgers club that managed only a Mark Ellis homer and seven singles over 6 2-3 innings against him in a 5-1 loss May 15.
While Miley could see Ellis, who came off the disabled list Wednesday after missing almost two months with a leg injury, he won't have to face Andre Ethier . The star outfielder was placed on the DL, retroactive to June 28, after missing six games with a strained left oblique.
Los Angeles (46-37) had dropped 11 of 12 before winning three of the last four to move back into first, one-half game ahead of San Francisco."We really feel that momentum shifting to where we're getting back to where we were," Dodgers catcher Matt Treanor said.
Arizona (39-42), meanwhile, is six games back. The Diamondbacks had won 10 of 11 at Chase Field before being swept there by San Diego.
The Dodgers took two of three at Arizona in May.
Aaron Harang threw seven solid innings and infielder Luis Cruz had two hits in Los Angeles' 4-1 win over the Reds on Wednesday. Cruz is 3 for 8 with two doubles and three RBIs in three games since being recalled from the minors to make his Dodger debut.
Nathan Eovaldi (0-5, 4.61) tries an eighth time to earn his first win since being recalled from the minors May 29. The right-hander, who has allowed 13 runs and 17 hits in 10 1-3 innings over his last two starts, gave up five runs in 5 1-3 of a 5-0 loss to the New York Mets on Saturday.
His Los Angeles teammates have not helped, totaling three runs over the 41 innings he's pitched. The Dodgers have been shut out in Eovaldi's last two outings."I go out there not thinking about that," Eovaldi said. "I just try to compete, try not to let anybody score and give my team the best chance to win."
Eovaldi made his major league debut at Chase Field on Aug. 6, allowing two runs and striking out seven over five innings in a 5-3 win that remains his lone victory in the majors. He gave up three runs over three relief appearances in the series after that, and hasn't faced Arizona this season.
He'll now try to hand the Diamondbacks a sixth straight loss for the first time since Aug. 17-22. Jason Kubel homered for the second straight game and Aaron Hill extended his home hitting streak to 19 games in Arizona's 8-6 loss to the Padres on Wednesday.
Hill is batting .461 (35 for 76) with 17 RBIs during that streak while Kubel has five homers and 13 RBIs in his last seven home contests.
|Los Angeles Dodgers|
|July 04, 2012||Dee Gordon||Day-to-Day||Left game - Dislocated right thumb|
|July 03, 2012||Todd Coffey||15-Day DL||Right elbow soreness|
|June 28, 2012||Andre Ethier||15-Day DL||Strained left oblique|
|June 27, 2012||Andre Ethier||Day-to-Day||Left game -left oblique strain|
|June 03, 2012||Javy Guerra||15-Day DL||Right knee inflammation|
|May 31, 2012||Matt Kemp||15-Day DL||Re-aggravated strained left hamstring|
|July 02, 2012||John McDonald||15-Day DL||Strained left oblique|
|June 26, 2012||Daniel Hudson||15-Day DL||Right foream tightness|
|June 17, 2012||Joe Saunders||15-Day DL||Strained left shoulder|
|May 23, 2012||Miguel Montero||Day-to-Day||Groin injury|
|April 19, 2012||Daniel Hudson||15-Day DL||Right shoulder impingement|
|April 19, 2012||Daniel Hudson||15-Day DL||Right shoulder impingement|
PHOENIX (AP) -- The Dodgers' patchwork lineup kept Los Angeles atop the NL West. Again.
Scott Van Slyke and Elian Herrera hit solo home runs, and the Los Angeles Dodgers sent Arizona to its sixth straight loss with a 4-1 win over the Diamondbacks on Thursday night.
"These are our guys," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "We're just kind of scratching for every win we can get right now. We've been able to put a couple of runs on the board and we've pitched good. That's been the main thing."
Diamondbacks starter Wade Miley allowed four runs and eight hits in 6 2-3 innings, with four strikeouts.
Van Slyke went deep off Miley and Herrera hit his first big league homer to chase Arizona's lone All-Star representative in the seventh inning to back Nathan Eovaldi , who got his first win in his eighth start.
"Nice to finally get that first one out of the way," Eovaldi said. "I try to go out there and try to keep us as close in every ballgame as I can."
Eovaldi (1-5) lasted six innings and allowed a run on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts.
The Dodgers are in first place in the division despite missing three starters due to injury - shortstop Dee Gordon will need surgery on his right thumb and miss six weeks, the club learned earlier Thursday. They lost 11 of 12 games last month before turning things around with four wins in their past five games.
"It really goes back to our pitching. They keep us in the game. They keep us close, and then you have a chance," Mattingly said. "Then it's a matter of getting a big hit."
Dodgers relievers Scott Elbert and Ronald Belisario combined on a scoreless seventh and eighth inning, and Kenley Jansen struck out the side in the ninth for his 15th save.
Arizona's club-record streak of 15 games with a home run ended.
"It stings now and yes, it is a broken record but we will get back," Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said. "I will be in a good mood and we will go push ahead and play a good game."
The Dodgers got to Miley, Arizona's most effective starter this season, for two runs on four sharply hit balls in the first inning. Juan Rivera and Luis Cruz drove in runs with one-out hits.
Los Angeles second baseman Mark Ellis made his first start since May 18, when injured his left leg. Ellis finished 2-for-4 with a walk.
The Diamondbacks grounded into three double plays and Herrera made a pair of important running catches on sinking line drives to left field.
NOTES: Gibson defended his two-time All-Star outfielder, Justin Upton , after Upton heard boos during Wednesday's game in which he went 0-for-5, stranding five runners on base, and afterward said he doesn't care about the fans. "I didn't read it that way. I think what he was saying was that he goes out and prepares. He's doing everything he can. It's all how you take the context of any quote," Gibson said. "I will say this about fans. Let's just stop if you're the fans and think about it. Do you want him to do good? Would booing in any way shape or form motivate somebody or help somebody? J-Up cares about everything that he does here. Trust me." There was barely a smattering of boos for Upton Thursday night after he went 2-for-4. Arizona LHP Joe Saunders will pitch in a rehabilitation assignment Sunday night at the Diamondbacks' training facility in nearby Scottsdale. Gibson wants to see Saunders, currently on the 15-day disabled list with a shoulder injury, get his pitch count up and build up his arm strength before he returns to the rotation.