Strong start a 'confidence booster' for Samardzija
Righty escapes big jam in three innings of work; Rizzo chips in RBI double
MESA, Ariz. -- Tony Campana, traded to Arizona before Cactus League games started, delivered a two-run pinch-hit double in a four-run sixth to spark the Diamondbacks to a 6-2 victory Friday over the Cubs.
D-backs starter Trevor Cahill walked David DeJesus to open the Cubs first, Luis Valbuena singled and Anthony Rizzo hit a RBI double. One out later, Nate Schierholtz hit a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
Jeff Samardzija, vying for the Cubs' Opening Day assignment, breezed through the first but had some trouble in the second. The Diamondbacks loaded the bases on a single and two walks, and a run scored when Mark Teahen hit into a double play. Samardzija gave up one run on one hit and three walks over three innings, striking out one.
"You don't want to be in those situations [like the second inning]," Samardzija said, "but you'll be in those situations during the year and it's almost like when you get in those situations like I was today, if you take a deep breath, and understand, 'OK, let's work on getting out of this,' so if it comes up in the season, you have a better idea of how to do it."
The right-hander called the outing a "confidence booster" because he escaped serious damage.
"Ultimately, when you can make mid-game adjustments, which I felt I did today, that's important," Samardzija said. "Instead of taking two or three innings to do it, if you can take two or three pitches, I thought I did that."
Teahen hit a one-out RBI single in the fourth off Michael Bowden to tie the game. Arizona loaded the bases in the sixth against Rafael Dolis, who then walked two in a row to force in two runs. Dolis exited, and Campana, who was designated for assignment Feb. 10, then traded to Arizona one week later for two 17-year-old Minor League pitchers, greeted Blake Parker with a two-run double.
"Good for him, bad for us," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said of Campana, who also hit a triple.
Cubs up next: Carlos Villanueva will make his second Cactus League start on Saturday against the Giants, and the Cubs are hoping he can finish an inning. Villanueva battled the Dodgers' Dee Gordon in a 16-pitch at-bat to begin his last outing on Monday, and the Cubs right-hander ran out of pitches before he could finish the inning. Steve Clevenger will start at first base as the Cubs try to see if the left-handed batter can fill a spot on the bench. The game will be broadcast on WGN Radio at 2:05 p.m. CT.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.