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Richards, McCarthy impressive; Angels beat D-backs

- Associated Press - Monday, March 3, 2014

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) - Garrett Richards threw three shutout innings, leading the Los Angeles Angels to a 3-2 win over an Arizona Diamondbacks split-squad on Monday.

The Diamondbacks failed to hit the ball out of the infield against Richards, a projected starter. Richards gave up an infield single to Martin Prado and a bunt single to Ender Inciarte. He struck out two and didn't walk a batter.

Brandon McCarty, the Diamondbacks' likely No. 5 starter, was equally impressive, tossing five innings of three-hit ball.

McCarthy allowed only a single to Luis Jimenez, a double to Collin Cowgill and a bunt single to Efren Navarro. He struck out two and walked one.

"A really good game for him," Gibson said. "He kept the ball down and he had good late life."

The Angels pushed across a run thanks to a two-base throwing error on a pickoff attempt by Diamondbacks pitcher Eury De la Rosa. The error set up a sacrifice fly by J.B. Shuck.

STARTING TIME

Angels: Richards figures to have a more relaxed spring training because he is now a projected member of the rotation rather than just another pitcher battling for a spot.

"The last two years I've competed for a spot, so I know what it's like to be on that end," Richards said.

Even so, Richards said his approach will change little. "Just because I'm in the rotation now doesn't mean I'll be in the rotation at the end of the year. I have to stay sharp and I have to keep competing and continue to improve."

Diamondbacks: McCarthy was sharp despite feeling ill. "I know he was sick. He got through it. That's what we're going to need in the season."

FIRST PITCH

The Diamondbacks' Patrick Corbin will start the opener in Australia against the Dodgers on march 22.

"It's an honor," said Corbin, a left-hander who went 14-8 last year with a 3.41 ERA. "Everybody wants to start the first game. That's how I prepared myself this offseason up to where we are today. ... I'm really excited to get out there and help the team win."

READY TO GO

The Diamondbacks have been in camp longer than other teams because of their upcoming trip to Australia and Gibson feels the team has made significant progress - all but one.

Starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo signed at the start of training camp and is a few days behind the other pitchers. His readiness for Australia is uncertain.

Said Gibson: "He should have signed earlier."

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