Diamondbacks 6, Rays 1

Cody Ross has had more success hitting against Jeremy Hellickson
recently than in explaining how he’s done it.

Ross hit a three-run homer off Hellickson and Wade Miley allowed
five hits in seven innings to help the Arizona Diamondbacks beat
the Tampa Bay Rays 6-1 on Tuesday night.

”He’s got good stuff and located the ball well,” said Ross,
who is 5 for 11 with five RBIs against Hellickson.

”His changeup is as good as it gets and he lives and dies with
it. There are just certain guys you time up well and certain guys
you don’t. I’ve hit him well the last two games but not as much
before that.”

Ross has hit safely in six of his past eight games, batting .452
(14 for 31) over that span.

”He’s barreling the ball a lot better,” Arizona manager Kirk
Gibson said. ”You can see that coming on. He’s much calmer at the
plate and not jumping at the pitch.”

Ross’ eighth home run came moments after Eric Chavez doubled
home Paul Goldschmidt to tie the game 1-1 in the fourth. Hellickson
then walked Aaron Hill before Ross homered to left to make it 4-1
one pitch after fouling a ball off his right calf and falling to
the ground.

”You can’t walk the leadoff guy in an inning,” Hellickson
said. ”I still could have limited the damage a little bit. I fell
behind to Chavez and couldn’t make a good pitch when I needed
to.”

Hellickson (10-5) failed to pitch past the fifth inning for the
second straight outing for the Rays, both against the
Diamondbacks.

Hellickson gave up five runs and five hits and three walks, hit
a batter and struck out one as the Rays slipped 1 1/2 games behind
Boston in the AL East.

It was Hellickson’s first road loss since April 25 against the
Chicago White Sox.

Miley (9-8) allowed one run, struck out five and walked two for
his fifth win in his past six starts.

”You want to get a good rhythm going,” Miley said. ”That’s
when you have success. Earlier I was getting upset with myself
after one or two small mistakes and it’s kind of snowballed. I get
too quick and I’m just firing it up there, no mindset, no
thought.”

Chavez finished with a pair of RBI doubles for the Diamondbacks,
who pulled within five games of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL
West.

”We just have to put runs on the board more,” said Chavez, who
has seven RBIs in three games against the Rays this season.

Tampa Bay went ahead 1-0 on Evan Longoria’s 22nd home run with
one out in the fourth.

Arizona added a run in the fifth when Hellickson walked
Goldschmidt and Chavez doubled off reliever Jamey Wright.

Martin Prado extended the lead to 6-1 with an RBI double to
center, scoring Adam Eaton in the seventh inning.

”We had a lot of hard outs,” Rays manager Joe Maddon said.
”We hit some balls hard for outs. I like our approach better
versus Miley tonight but the four-spot did hurt.”

NOTES: Tampa Bay was making its third trip to Arizona and first
since 2007. … Before the game, the Rays placed Desmond Jennings
on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to Aug. 4 with a small
fracture in his left middle finger. Tampa Bay selected OF Jason
Bourgeois from Triple-A Durham to replace Jennings. … The Rays
also moved RHP Alex Cobb, out with a concussion, to the 60-day
disabled list from the 15-day DL. … Miley has allowed eight runs
in his past seven starts to lower his ERA from 4.55 to 3.56. .
Hellickson singled in the fifth, his first career hit. … Heath
Bell, who pitched the eighth, has posted 11 consecutive scoreless
outings spanning 11 1-3 innings with 15 strikeouts. … RHP Chris
Archer (6-4) will attempt to get back on track Wednesday when he
faces LHP Randall Delgado (4-3) and the Diamondbacks. Archer
allowed four runs in his last start against San Francisco, matching
his total for the month of July. Delgado has allowed three runs or
fewer in eight of nine starts.