LOS ANGELES (AP) Starting a season healthy was just as
important to Curt Schilling as winning his first start.
Schilling, who missed the first month of last season recovering
from shoulder surgery, struck out 12 in seven innings as the
Arizona Diamondbacks beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 7-2 Wednesday
"I want to do what they're paying me to do, which is take the
ball 35-40 times this year," Schilling said. "And if I can do
that, I should be OK."
Schilling (1-0) allowed two runs one earned and four hits as
the Diamondbacks won their second straight at Dodger Stadium. Luis
Gonzalez gave him some breathing room with two home runs.
"I felt real good getting loose to the point where I was a
little nervous because I felt so good," Schilling said.
"I was a little concerned last week about the command of my
fastball because it wasn't where I wanted it to be. Once I got into
the bullpen tonight, I realized that you can't duplicate the
feeling you get when you walk out for a real game. Then, all the
loose ends seemed to tie up."
Schilling, beginning his first full season with Arizona, was 5-6
with a 3.69 ERA in 13 starts for the Diamondbacks in 2000 after
coming over from Philadelphia.
"Last year we picked him up in a trade, and he was only half a
season away from his surgery," Gonzalez said. "So now he's got a
full year and a half since the surgery, and now we ride the big
horse as long as we can."
The Diamondbacks broke open a 1-1 game in the fifth with five
two-out runs against Darren Dreifort, making his season debut after
signing a five-year, $55 million contract in the offseason.
"Dreifort obviously didn't have his best stuff tonight,"
Gonzalez said. "And when a guy as good as him is pitching like
that, you've got to take advantage of it. We were able to string
some hits together and get some key hits and have a big inning."
Tony Womack singled in a run, Mark Grace hit a bloop single to
center for his first RBI with Arizona, Matt Williams doubled home a
run and David Dellucci chased Dreifort with a bases-loaded two-run
single that capped the rally. Womack had three hits.
Dreifort, who pitched 7 2/3 scoreless innings against the
Diamondbacks in a 1-0 victory the last time he faced them on Sept.
20, 2000, allowed six runs and 10 hits in 4 2/3 innings.
"Obviously, I wanted to get off to a better start than that,"
said Driefort, the only pitcher to go 5-0 in spring training. "It
was one of those nights when I had trouble putting people away. I
felt good. I just got beat."
Gonzalez, whose two-run homer Tuesday night gave the
Diamondbacks a 3-2 victory in their season opener, drove Dreifort's
1-0 pitch into the pavilion in right-center with two outs in the
first inning. He homered again off Jose Nunez his second homer
off the rookie in two games leading off the ninth.
The Dodgers, who have only 15 hits in their first three games,
scored on a leadoff homer in the third by Paul Lo Duca and an RBI
single by Eric Karros. The hit snapped a season-opening 0-for-9
stretch by Karros, which included five consecutive strikeouts.
Schilling reached double digits in strikeouts for the 51st
time in 245 career starts. He averaged nine complete games over the
previous five seasons but surrendered an average of 25 home runs
over the last four years. ... Reliever Mike Morgan, beginning his
24th year of professional ball, pitched a perfect eighth inning in
his season debut. The right-hander made his major league debut on
June 11, 1978 seven months and eight days before Arizona teammate
Byung-Hyun Kim was born. ... Dodgers vice president and Hall of
Fame manager Tom Lasorda was immortalized again Wednesday night
this time as a bobble-head doll, which was handed out to everyone
in the crowd of 34,301. ... Dreifort allowed a team-high 31 homers
last season in 192 2/3 innings one more than he did in 358 2/3
innings over his previous two seasons combined. ... Dodgers
reliever Matt Herges escaped his own bases-loaded jam by retiring
Damian Miller on a fly to right in the seventh.
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Chi. White Sox 4
NY Yankees 8
Kansas City 2
Tampa Bay 8
Chicago Cubs 2
NY Mets 2
St. Louis 9
Los Angeles 2
San Francisco 8
San Diego 7