KANSAS CITY, Mo. —— With a couple of rookies showing veteran poise, the Diamondbacks turned the tables Wednesday.
Unable to hold a three-run lead Tuesday, the D-Backs rallied from two down Wednesday to defeat the Kansas City Royals, 4-3, at Kauffman Stadium.
“We needed to play a good ballgame, and it didn't start out that way,” manager Bob Brenly said.
It was just the second time this season — the first since April 7 at Los Angeles — the Diamondbacks came back from more than one run down to win a road game.
Arizona's defense was sloppy early, so rookie Andrew Good had to battle for six innings. The D-Backs gradually tied the score and went ahead on three doubles in the seventh.
Then the defense rallied to rescue Jose Valverde in the ninth. Kansas City closed within a run, but without Quinton McCracken's diving catch in right field and Robby Hammock's stop behind the plate, Valverde would have blown the save.
McCracken, Junior Spivey and Danny Bautista doubled off Darrell May (0-3) in the seventh inning to break a 2-2 tie. Bautista's was just his second extra-base hit in 16 games.
Eddie Oropesa and Oscar Villarreal each pitched a scoreless inning in relief of Good, and Valverde came in for the ninth.
McCracken speared Desi Relaford's leadoff liner, but a walk and two-out singles by Raul Ibañez and Carlos Beltran (on an 0-2 pitch) cut the score to 4-3.
On the first pitch to Michael Tucker, Hammock — moved from third base to behind the plate for the ninth since the Royals had already stolen three bases on Chad Moeller — made a nifty sliding stop to his right.
“I was set up away and it was down and in,” Hammock said. “He throws pretty hard. You've got to be on your toes.
“That's fun. I like those situations.”
Valverde came back with three straight strikes to whiff Tucker, nailing down Valverde's third save.
“We were committed to letting him finish that game,” Brenly said, “even with the lefties coming up, even with Beltran (a switch-hitter), who we usually turn around to the right side. We felt confident that Jose would find a way to get that last out.”
Kansas City left 12 men on base.
After allowing 14 unearned runs in their first 62 games, the D-Backs have given up six in the last three.
The Diamondbacks made three errors in the first three innings, giving them six in three games. But Good (3-1) stranded seven runners in those three innings, allowing two unearned runs.
“In that situation I'm trying to do damage control, and for the most part I was able to do that,” Good said.
“That's what we've come to expect from him,” Brenly said. “He doesn't unravel. He doesn't get rattled. It would have been very easy for a young pitcher — especially in front of a hostile crowd against a very aggressive swinging ballclub — to come unglued a little bit, but he didn't do that.”
Since being recalled a second time, Good is 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA.