SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) - Carlos Gonzalez homered for Colorado while Robbie Ray made a strong opening statement in his bid to be in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ starting rotation during the Rockies’ 6-5 win Thursday.
Gonzalez hit a solo shot off new Diamondbacks reliever Tyler Clippard in the fifth inning.
“We don’t worry too much about him,” Rockies manager Walt Weiss said of Gonzalez. “Guys like CarGo, we just want to make sure they’re ready when the bell rings.”
With four rotation spots already announced, Ray is trying win the last one available for Arizona. The 24-year-old left-hander went 5-12 with a 3.52 ERA in 23 starts last season. He struck out three in two scoreless innings in his spring debut.
“He threw the ball great,” Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale said. “He threw his fastball where he wanted to for the most part. His changeup was pretty good, and he threw a few good sliders.”
Rickie Weeks, signed to a minor league deal by Arizona after spring training was under way, began his push for a roster spot with a two-run double.
Trevor Story, a candidate to open the season at shortstop with Jose Reyes suspended and awaiting trial on a charge of abusing his wife, hit a three-run homer for the Rockies.
“You always want to get off to good start and make a good first impression, and he certainly did,” Weiss said of Story.
Rockies: Jordan Lyles made his first big league start since toe surgery that limited him to 10 starts last season and is expected to be in the opening-day starting rotation. Lyles allowed two runs and three hits with two strikeouts in two innings.
“Good to be back out there,” Lyles said. “I wasn’t pleased with the results … just have to look at the positives and that’s being healthy. From a physical standpoint I’m throwing everything. I’m back to normal.”
Diamondbacks: Ray made the better impression over competitor Zack Godley, who gave up three runs and four hits in his two innings. Godley struck out four and walked one in his two innings.
“I pounded in on guys. I was able to mix in my offspeed,” Ray said. “Changeup was really good. That plays off the fastball command, just going in on guys and letting them know I’m here.”
Rockies: LHP Chris Rusin has inflammation in his left middle finger and will be miss his scheduled start Friday.
Diamondbacks: Manager Chip Hale said OF A.J. Pollock will play in his first spring training game on Friday. He took batting practice and threw on Thursday. He’d been dealing with a sore right elbow. P Silvino Bracho (groin) is soon to face hitters from a mound and after that, appear in games.
Rockies: With Rusin injured and out, Weiss didn’t immediately make a decision on who will start against Oakland on Friday in Mesa.
Diamondbacks: The highly anticipated Diamondbacks debut of Zack Greinke is set for Friday in Scottsdale, a game against an Oakland split squad. Greinke is to pitch two innings. “The game doesn’t even matter. There’s going to be nerves. But he’s a pro and he knows how to handle it and he’ll get his work in,” Hale said. Greinke has been limited with some of the throwing and other drills he’s done in workouts so as to be ready to start Friday.
SEGURA AT SECOND
Jean Segura, acquired by Arizona from Milwaukee last month, is to start at second base Friday. Segura, a shortstop throughout his career, hasn’t played second in the major leagues.
“He’s looked good at the plate. He’s done very well on our drills,” Hale said. “We’re trying to move everybody around. After two or three weeks we can maybe decide on who looks best and really start to have them get after it.”
Hale said if Segura can show that he can play second base, he could be considered for playing “almost every day.”
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