SAN DIEGO - The Diamondbacks used the same starting lineup (spots one through eight) Saturday they used on opening day and five other times this season.
That may not seem noteworthy, but it marked the first time since the first three games of the 2002 season that manager Bob Brenly used the same batting order for three straight games.
And the players appreciate it.
"It’s one less thing to worry about," said third baseman Shea Hillenbrand, who batted in four spots in his 82 starts for Arizona last year. "There’s so many things and so many variables involved just playing baseball that there’s plenty (else) to worry about."
Brenly used 146 batting orders last year, only one more than twice and none more than three times.
"I’ve had to fight the temptation to mess around with it a couple of times," he said, "but I think there’s something to be said for consistency. I’ve said since the beginning of spring training, given the personnel we have this year, it’s not going to be like we’ve done it in the past. Whenever we can, if we give somebody a day off, we’re going to plug the replacement right into the same spot. Hopefully that will give them a sense of continuity from day to day."
Matt Kata has been the only player to start at more than one position and more than one spot in the order.
"I think it’s a lot easier for guys," Luis Gonzalez said, "knowing that when they come (to the park) they basically don’t have to look at the lineup unless they’re told the night before that they’re not playing. "
Randy Johnson’s shutout Friday was the 36th of his career, second among active players to Roger Clemens’ 46. But since July 1999, Johnson has 11 complete-game shutouts to Clemens’ one.
Johnson owns the first shutout in two stadiums: Petco Park and Seattle’s Safeco Field.
He has 33 of the 73 complete games in Arizona franchise history (Curt Schilling had 18) and 13 of the 26 complete-game shutouts.
In 43 games in his native state of California, Johnson is 24-8 with a 2.68 ERA.
Also, Johnson’s two-run double Friday was the 11th double of his career, 10th as a Diamondback. His 11 extrabase hits (including a homer last year) are most by an Arizona pitcher.
Johnson is scheduled to next pitch Wednesday against Milwaukee’s Doug Davis — off whom he hit the home run.
Robby Hammock was the designated hitter Friday night for Class A Lancaster, going 2-for-4 as he continued his rehabilitation assignment. He had been scheduled to catch but the plan was adjusted after he traveled from Tucson to Lancaster.
Hammock, who missed most of spring training after knee surgery, was supposed to catch Saturday and today, but Lancaster was rained out Saturday. Still, since Brent Mayne has been playing well, the team may not need to have Hammock show he can catch consecutive days before activating him (which could come Tuesday). All reports on his health have been good.