Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Homers spoil Enright's return to D-backs

By Anthony Fenech / MLB.com | 7/19/2011

PHOENIX -- It wasn't the start Barry Enright hoped for.

First, a home run. Then, a single and a home run. Then, a couple of outs later, another single followed by another home run.

"You never want to come up here and start a game like that," he said.

Five runs and six hits later, Enright escaped his first inning since being recalled from the Minor Leagues, but the deficit was too deep for the D-backs to dig out of as they fell, 11-3, to the Brewers on Tuesday night at Chase Field.

"It's very cliché," Enright said, "but it was one of those games. It's very disappointing, obviously, to come up here and disappoint these guys, myself and have a loss for these guys when they're playing great."

He allowed a leadoff home run to Corey Hart and two-run home runs to Ryan Braun and Yuniesky Betancourt as the powerful Milwaukee lineup rudely welcomed the right-hander back to the big leagues after his two-plus months at Triple-A Reno.

"He had a bad game tonight," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "He didn't throw quality pitches. He left a cement mixer over the plate, they pounded it. He left three fastballs over the plate, they pounded it."

"When you put them over the plate, sometimes that's what happens," Hart said. "We didn't miss the ones he put over."

Enright followed the worst inning of his Major League career with a perfect inning, before allowing a solo home run to Rickie Weeks in the third and being lifted for reliever Zach Duke -- whose spot he took in the rotation -- after the frame.

His final line was three innings, six runs on seven hits with two strikeouts.

"To put the ball down the middle for those guys, the first inning especially," Enright said, "it's not acceptable. Location is going to be who I am."

True to form, the D-backs responded to Enright's first-inning shellacking with two runs in their half of the frame off Yovani Gallardo on an RBI single by Justin Upton and a sacrifice fly by Miguel Montero.

Upton's single broke an 0-for-20 skid and was one of two hits the right fielder had on the night.

And when first baseman Brandon Allen disposed of a Gallardo fastball inside the foul pole and into the second deck in right field -- at an ESPN Stats and Information-estimated 455 feet -- it looked as if the D-backs were ready to pull off their 26th comeback win.

"I didn't really look at it," Allen said, when asked if he had ever hit a ball that far in a game. "But I don't think so."

But a bullpen implosion in the sixth inning erased any thoughts of a rally.

After Duke allowed back-to-back singles to Betancourt and Jonathan Lucroy and walked Gallardo to start the inning, he was relieved by right-hander Yhency Brazoban, who walked in two runs and forced home another on a hit-by-pitch before Gibson went back to the bullpen.

"You're not going to get yourself out of trouble doing that," Gibson said. "We know that, so we have to find people that can perform in those situations."

Micah Owings eliminated any further damage, inducing a double play from Prince Fielder and a groundout from Weeks to escape the bases-loaded, no-out jam.

The D-backs, however, wouldn't threaten any further damage, singling twice in the final four frames, and Betancourt put an exclamation point on the Brewers' 11-run, 14-hit assault with a two-run home run in the ninth off Sam Demel for the team's fifth home run of the game.

"In all aspects of the game we didn't play well," Gibson said. "So it seems really bad. It's not that bad. We've got a game tomorrow. We'll be fine."

With the loss, the D-backs fell to 4 1/2 games behind the Giants in the National League West.

"We'll absorb it and move on," Gibson continued. "We're going to write it off, we're going to regroup, have a good attitude tomorrow and believe that we're going to win the game."

No comments: