D-backs dial up long ball to rout Athletics
Kubel, Eaton, Pennington hit two-run homers; Collmenter tosses two scoreless
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The D-backs hit a trio of two-run homers en route to a 9-4 win over the A's on Tuesday afternoon at Salt River Fields.
The A's took a 1-0 lead in the third with a home run of their own by catcher Derek Norris.
The D-backs finally got on the board in the fourth, when Aaron Hill singled and Jason Kubel smacked a two-out homer to left-center off Mike Ekstrom. The blast gave Arizona a 2-1 lead.
One inning later, Cliff Pennington drew a two-out walk, and Adam Eaton followed with his first homer of the spring to put the D-backs up 4-1.
Wil Nieves added a single in the sixth to drive home pinch-runner Jon Griffin and push the D-backs' lead to 5-1.
Pennington finished the home run barrage with a two-out, two-run shot later in the inning.
Josh Collmenter, expected to be the long man out of the bullpen, got the start for the D-backs and allowed one hit over two innings.
A's starter A.J. Griffin matched Collmenter with two scoreless innings of his own.
"He was really good," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "We know that when he's at his best pitching frequently, he's painting, and, boy, he had his paint brush out from the first pitch today."
The A's missed a scoring opportunity in the sixth, when they put runners at second and third with one out against reliever Tony Sipp, who got a flyout and a strikeout to end the threat. They scored three times in the ninth inning, during which D-backs pitcher Warner Madrigal was knocked out of the game after being hit by a comebacker.
Up next for the D-backs: Brandon McCarthy will make his first start in a D-backs uniform Wednesday against the Reds at 1:10 p.m. MT, and fans can listen live to a free exclusive webcast. It will be the right-hander's first time pitching in a game since he was hit in the head by a line drive on Sept. 5 last year. McCarthy suffered a skull fracture and a brain contusion and was unable to pitch again the rest of the season.