Weaver strong in 3-inning debut for D-backs

Holland settles in during 2nd spring outing; McFarland not concerned about shoulder

March 5th, 2019

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- D-backs right-hander  was impressive in his first Cactus League game this spring, as he held the Reds to one run on two hits with three strikeouts over three innings in a 3-3 tie at Salt River Fields on Monday.

“He was in control of his outing,” manager Torey Lovullo said. “He was utilizing, I thought, some really good secondary stuff. Those are the things we’re starting to look at this time of the spring.”

Weaver’s first spring action came in a backfield "B" game against a team from Korea last week.

“This was the first stadium game, so there was a little adrenaline,” said Weaver, who was part of the D-backs' return from St. Louis in the Paul Goldschmidt trade. “I was just trying to settle in and settle down a little bit after the first inning. I had to pitch a little bit out of a jam there. I made some good pitches there at the end, but they snuck one by. It happens. Overall, I was excited about the breaking stuff and the way the fastball is coming out. Going into the next one, just kind of turn it up and do a little better next time.”

Holland settles in

Reliever  gave up a home run to Matt Kemp, the first batter he faced in his inning of work, but the right-hander pitched well after that in his second appearance of the spring.

Mason Williams followed Kemp's homer with a double, but it came on what would have been a routine grounder to third had the defense not been in an shift.

Holland, who is competing with Archie Bradley for the closer’s role, retired three straight batters after Williams' double. In his first spring outing, Holland allowed three runs on two hits in two-thirds of an inning.

“After that home run, I felt like he started to zone in with his secondary stuff, started to locate that fastball better,” Lovullo said. “For me, it’s a process with him. I know that he knows what he’s got to get to, there’s no panic in the runs he’s given up or the mistakes that he’s making. I know that he’s going to get back to the fastball location that he’s expecting, and the secondary stuff is always a very, very good weapon for him.”

McFarland not concerned

D-backs left-hander , who was shut down Sunday with shoulder inflammation, said he did not believe the injury was anything to be worried about.

“It’s shoulder inflammation, nothing too serious,” McFarland said. “With Spring Training and the time and everything, we figured take a few days off, see how it recovers in the next few days and get back into some throwing again.”

If McFarland gets back to throwing in a week, it should not impact his ability to be ready for Opening Day.

Bracho testing

D-backs right-hander , who left Sunday’s game with discomfort in his elbow, was examined by team doctors Sunday night and was set to undergo an MRI on Monday.

“Had some conversation with him and obviously, [he’s] a little bit disappointed,” Lovullo said. “But we’re going to hope for the best, and I told him to remain as optimistic as possible.”

Bracho was shuttled between Triple-A Reno and the D-backs last season, making a combined 58 appearances.

Out of Minor League options, Bracho had a strong chance to make the Opening Day roster, and still could if the MRI is positive.

“Had no elbow issues whatsoever and it’s the life of a pitcher,” Lovullo said. “Sometimes those types of things happen and you can’t predict it. The worst part about this equation is that he’s throwing the ball extremely well and on a path to do exactly what he was trying to do and what he was challenged to do through the offseason and through Spring Training.”

Up next

Two of the pitchers vying for high-leverage roles in the bullpen are scheduled to see action Tuesday night when the D-backs travel to Surprise, Ariz., to play the Royals at 6:05 p.m. MST. Bradley and Yoshihisa Hirano will follow starter Merrill Kelly to the mound. It will be Bradley’s first appearance in a Cactus League game this spring. He pitched Saturday in a “B” game. Hirano has pitched in a pair of “B” games this spring.