SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- In an efficient outing against the Dodgers, D-backs starter Brandon McCarthy was able to get through four innings without reaching his 60-pitch limit.
The right-hander tossed just 52 pitches in the opener for both teams.
"That's always the plan," McCarthy said of getting outs with a minimal number of pitches. "As quick as I can get them, the better. I don't have the stuff to get deep in counts with guys. I don't have the plus stuff to get you to swing and miss. I need you to swing at something moving early and get yourself out and get the next guy in the box."
The four innings were the most McCarthy had thrown in a spring debut, but with the longer than usual spring the Arizona pitchers had more time to throw simulated games to build up their pitch counts.
"He threw good," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said of McCarthy. "He threw a lot of strikes, executed the game plan that we wanted to. He gave up one run, but he kind of set the tone for us. He let us play defense behind him, we made some nice plays behind him. He threw the ball really good, it's a positive day for him."
McCarthy was able to use all his pitches.
"I threw everything, just kind of a steady mix," McCarthy said. "It was close to the in-season the mix we'd like to use."
Trumbo passes first defensive test of spring
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- D-backs left fielder Mark Trumbo did not have to wait very long for his first test in the field.
Chone Figgins hit a sinking liner to left to lead off Wednesday's Cactus League opener against the Dodgers, and Trumbo made a nice diving catch.
"You've got to be ready," Trumbo said. "I knew that's one of the things Figgy does. He shoots the other way a lot, and I was in decent position to come in and make the play."
When the D-backs acquired Trumbo, there was talk that his best position was first base and that he might not be an adequate defender in left.
"I think there's a lot of skepticism, so the more I can produce and contribute, the more confidence people have in me out there," Trumbo said.
But make no mistake, Trumbo does not doubt his abilities.
"I got out there with confidence, and I expect to make the plays," he said.
Trumbo made a nice sliding catch in the fifth, once again on Figgins.
"I've been questioned about it several times," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said about Trumbo's defense, "and from Day 1, we felt we did our homework before we acquired him and thought he'd be a true asset to this team in many regards. He's still got a lot to learn. He's got a lot of games that he's going to play in Spring Training, and he'll get better."
Gibby waiting to name Opening Series starters
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Patrick Corbin and Trevor Cahill are slated to start for the D-backs on Friday and Saturday.
If you were to schedule the rest of the spring out on a five-man-rotation basis, Corbin and Cahill would be lined up to start the two-game Opening Series against the Dodgers on March 22-23 in Sydney, Australia. But manager Kirk Gibson said not so fast.
"You're assuming they're going to go every fifth day," Gibson said when asked about it. "There's a lot of flexibility in the schedule. If you look at just the week before the games, there's a lot of downtime there. That's one way to look at it, but that's not necessarily the truth."
The Dodgers have discussed the possibility of not starting ace Clayton Kershaw in Sydney as a way of lessening his workload this season.
With Corbin having thrown a career-high 208 1/3 innings last year, it's possible the D-backs could think about doing the same thing with him.
"It's one of the thoughts," Gibson said. "He threw a lot of innings last year. We've had a lot of conversations. Obviously, we talk all the time about different scenarios. I have an idea of what we might do, but it's not set in stone and it's reversible. We're just not there yet."
The D-backs want to get through the rotation at least once this spring before making decisions about Australia.
Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.