Diamondbacks 4, Cubs 3

Time and time again, the Arizona Diamondbacks found ways to get

out of trouble.

Three double plays, including one for the final two outs, earned

the Diamondbacks a 4-3 win over the Chicago Cubs and a split of a

four-game series with the Cubs.

Diamondbacks closer J.J. Putz got out of a

runners-at-the-corners, one-out jam after a leadoff double, a deep

fly ball from Carlos Pena caught in front of the right-field fence,

a walk and pinch hitter Jeff Baker grounding into the double

play.

”Fortunately I got the ball in on Pena just enough,” Putz

said.

A visit at the mound with catcher Miguel Montero produced an

agreed-upon first-pitch slider, and the plan worked.

Manager Kirk Gibson’s game plan also included being aggressive

on the basepaths. Montero going from first to third on a single and

Ryan Roberts breaking for home and scoring on a safety squeeze bunt

in the Diamondbacks’ three-run fourth inning were keys to the

win.

”Our plan is to be aggressive when we can,” Gibson said.

”When things aren’t working the conventional way you try and push

the issue sometimes, and it worked.”

Daniel Hudson (2-4) pitched seven solid innings won his second

straight start after allowing three runs against Philadelphia April

26. He gave up three runs and eight hits.

The Diamondbacks scored three runs in the fourth inning on a

balk, sacrifice bunt and wild pitch. Cubs starter Casey Coleman

balked home the first run with Montero on third. Then, with runners

at first and third and one out, Hudson laid down a bunt and Roberts

beat the throw home.

”If you research that play around the game, you’ll find a lot

of times that that play, it forces other mistakes,” Gibson

said.

The third run scored when the bases were loaded and Coleman

(1-2) uncorked a wild pitch allowing Gerardo Parra to score. He had

been intentionally walked.

Coleman (1-2) allowed four runs and four hits in five

innings.

Trailing 4-1, the Cubs rallied in the seventh as Geovany Soto

had a two-run double after Marlon Byrd singled and Pena walked.

Soto was left stranded at third, as Hudson retired pinch-hitter

Tyler Colvin on a comebacker to the mound.

”The little things along the way when you are in a 4-3 contest,

they add up,” Cubs manager Mike Quade said.

Alfonso Soriano led off the second inning with a double, then

eventually scored on a groundout by Pena. The Diamondbacks tied it

at 1 with Roberts’ sixth home run of the season in the bottom of

the second.

David Hernandez and Putz each threw a scoreless inning for

Arizona, Putz earning his sixth save.

Notes: Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said RHP Aaron Heilman’s

simulated game Sunday was ”free and easy.” Heilman, on the

disabled list with right shoulder soreness since April 14, might

pitch another, or an extended spring training game before he’s

ready to return. … Asked about the Diamondbacks’ play over the

first month of the season, Gibson said he didn’t like the team’s

record (11-15 in April) but ”I think we’ve played the game and

kind of adapted to the situation in the game. We’ve come from

behind, we’ve tied games up … our demeanor and our preparation

has remained solid.” … Soriano hit a home run Saturday night at

Chase Field that was estimated to have traveled 461 feet. It hit

the facade of the scoreboard/video board in straightaway center

field.