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LAD@ARI: Beckett fans nine, holds D-backs to one run

Six starts into the 2013 season, Josh Beckett is still searching for his first win of the season. The right-hander owns a 5.24 ERA and hasn't pitched particularly well to date, but the last time he faced the D-backs, the veteran probably deserved a better fate than what he ended up with.

Back on April 14 in Phoenix, Beckett tossed 8 1/3 brilliant innings, striking out nine batters and looking like his old All-Star self in the process. Unfortunately for the 32-year-old, his offense gave him no support, and while he was trying to finish his ninth inning of work, Paul Goldschmidt slipped a slow roller through the infield for a walk-off single that gave the D-backs a 1-0 victory and Beckett a hard-luck loss.

Now more than three weeks later, Beckett will look to get his revenge Tuesday when the Dodgers and D-backs meet for the second game of the three-game National League West series.

In his last start, Beckett lasted just four innings against the Rockies, surrendering five runs (four earned) on five hits and three walks.

"It's just frustrating, I'm frustrated," Beckett said. "I've just got to make better pitches. There is no excuse. I've got to make an adjustment."

Meanwhile, hoping to keep the struggling Dodgers down on Tuesday for the D-backs will be Brandon McCarthy, who is also searching for his first win of the season.

Signed away from the A's in the offseason, McCarthy hasn't been as advertised so far this year. The right-hander has 7.22 ERA in six starts and has allowed at least eight hits in all of his outings.

Still, McCarthy believes he is making progress even though he isn't seeing the results just yet. He was in line to win his first game in an Arizona uniform in his last outing, but the D-backs bullpen coughed up a late lead. The 29-year-old worked six innings, allowing four runs on eight hits while striking out six.

"Overall it was encouraging, but there are little things I can do to smooth out the rough edges," McCarthy said after the game. "The stuff is there. It's just making sure you put together the whole game plan."

Dodgers: Gonzalez playing through pain
Adrian Gonzalez had an MRI on Monday that revealed a mild strain in his left trapezius muscle at the base of his neck, but he will play through the pain.

"I'm going to try to play through it and see how it feels," Gonzalez said Monday afternoon. "It's not getting worse, but there's still quite a bit of pain there."

Gonzalez did not take batting practice before Monday's game against the D-backs, but he started for the first time since Wednesday. The first baseman ended up going 2-for-4 in the game.

"I think the last couple days what's flared it up is being out there running around, throwing, stretching, hitting, taking grounders, all that stuff," Gonzalez said.

D-backs: Gregorius batting second, Prado sixth
• With the D-backs' offense struggling to find consistency, manager Kirk Gibson went against his previous wishes and moved Didi Gregorius up to the No. 2 spot in the order Monday while sliding Martin Prado, who is off to a slow start offensively, down to sixth.

"I told you I didn't really want to do that, but I just feel the way our offense has been constructed lately we haven't gotten the production, the consistent production," Gibson said. "Little more balance in our lineup between right and left. He's young. It puts a little more pressure on him. We'll see if he can handle it. Prado's been pushing, no doubt about it, so I just moved him down a little bit, try to get him going a little bit."

• D-backs top prospect Tyler Skaggs is off to a slow start at Triple-A Reno. The left-hander is 2-4 with a 6.89 ERA in his first six starts.

"Confidence," D-backs general manager Kevin Towers said. "He didn't have a real good spring, and if you don't have a good spring and you've got to get things back on track pitching in the [Pacific Coast League] -- specifically at Reno -- it's hard."

The PCL has long been known as a league that is tough on pitchers given the altitude of some of the parks as well as the configurations of some of the ballparks.

Worth noting
• Phoenix native Andre Ethier ranks second among all active players in RBIs against the D-backs with 68.

• The D-backs are the only team in the Majors to not be shut out this season. Comments