- Associated Press - Friday, April 15, 2016

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Arizona manager Chip Hale took a chance, deviating from his usual late-inning choices with the back of his bullpen, and it ruined a possible victory for Robbie Ray and the Diamondbacks.

The left-hander exited with a 2-0 lead with one out in the seventh inning, but Randall Delgado and Andrew Chafin gave up run-scoring hits to the next four batters, and the Los Angeles Dodgers used the five-run rally to beat the Diamondbacks 5-2 on Thursday night.

Delgado (0-1) allowed an RBI single to Justin Turner, and Kike Hernandez hit a drive to the wall in left-center for the tying and go-ahead runs. Chafin then gave up RBI singles to Yasiel Puig and Adrian Gonzalez.

“I’ll take the blame for this one,” Hale said. “I should have just gone to (Tyler) Clippard in the seventh because he’s been our seventh-inning guy. But Randall’s done so well with guys on base the last couple of years, so I felt like he was the right matchup.

“It didn’t work out, and Chafe couldn’t stop the bleeding there. As a manager, you make decisions during the game. And sometimes when they don’t work out, you have to take responsibility. So it was my mistake. It’s tough, because Robbie pitched great and the guys played their tails off.”

Ray’s no-decision left the Diamondbacks’ starting rotation 0-6 with a 6.18 ERA through the team’s first 10 games. Ray beat the Dodgers twice during a 12-day span last September, allowing no runs and five hits over 11 innings.

Ray was charged with two runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings. But the 24-year-old left-hander also walked five, giving him nine in 12 1/3 innings over his first two starts this season.

“I don’t know if it was necessarily control problems,” Hale said. “He’s a young kid that throws hard. I thought tonight he kept trying to go to the off-speed stuff, even when he wasn’t really locating it. But it was a good sign that he still had confidence in it. So that’s not an issue that we’re worried about at this point.”

Ross Stripling allowed two runs on five hits over six innings in his second big league start, but trailed 2-0 when he exited.

Last weekend, the right-hander tossed 7 1/3 hitless innings against the Giants, but had to settle for a no-decision after Chris Hatcher gave up a tying two-run homer in the eighth and Joe Blanton surrendered a walkoff home run in the 10th.

Stripling had five strikeouts and a walk. He gave up a hit to the first Diamondbacks batter he faced, Jean Segura, on a single through the box before retiring Socrates Brito on a double-play grounder.

J.P. Howell (1-0) got the victory with a perfect inning of relief. Yimi Garcia pitched a scoreless eighth and Kenley Jansen worked a perfect ninth for his fourth save in as many chances - one night after posting the first five-out save of his career.

EXPERIENCE COUNTS

Diamondbacks pitching coach Mike Butcher is with his third different team in that role, after one season at Tampa Bay and nine with the Angels.

“I think he’s brought a bit of toughness,” Hale said. “We’re not standing for guys just going out there and getting their work in. We want guys who want to win, and that’s something he’s really instilled in them. More than pitching to the hitter’s weakness, we want to pitch to the pitcher’s strengths. And that’s one thing Mike’s brought here. He’s working with each guy individually. And as a group, they’re sort of figuring out their DNA.”

UP NEXT

Diamondbacks: RHP Zack Greinke (0-2, 9.90 ERA) opposes James Shields in the opener of a three-game series at San Diego - a marquee matchup featuring two of the most high-profile free-agent pitchers to change teams during the last two offseasons. Greinke left the Dodgers to sign a six-year, $175 million contract with Arizona in December. Shields inked a four-year, $75 million deal with the Padres in February 2015 after two seasons with Kansas City.


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