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D-backs come alive too late in Australia finale

Trumbo homers in four-run ninth, but Dodgers' cushion holds up

SYDNEY -- The D-backs helped bring Major League Baseball to Australia this weekend.

They did not, however, bring any wins back to Phoenix with them.

Trevor Cahill struggled with his control, and the D-backs' lethargic bats came to life a little too late in a 7-5 loss to the Dodgers. Arizona headed back to the States without a win in the historic Opening Series at Sydney Cricket Ground.

The two games were well received by the locals, with almost 80,000 attending.

Mark Trumbo went 2-for-5 with three RBIs, including a two-run homer in the ninth as the D-backs tried to erase a six-run deficit against the Dodgers' bullpen.

Trumbo drove in the club's only run on Opening Day in his D-backs debut, and Arizona also lost an exhibition match with Team Australia on Friday night by a 5-0 margin. Of more concern to the D-backs going forward, though, has to be the performance of Cahill.

"I was getting hit around in spring, but I felt like my command was close. I was able to throw strikes when I had to," Cahill said. "Today, I don't know if it was just the adrenaline, trying to do too much, trying to be too fine. They were swinging at some first pitches and I think I tried to expand a little bit and started falling behind."

The D-backs are counting on Cahill to bounce back after struggling in 2013, but the control problems that plagued him last year were on display again as he walked four and hit a batter while allowing five runs and eight hits in just four-plus innings.

The Dodgers jumped on Cahill in the first when Yasiel Puig singled, moved to second on a two-out walk and then scored when Andre Ethier singled to right-center.

"He didn't command the zone very good at all," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "Not many strike ones."

In the third, Cahill allowed a leadoff single to Hyun-Jin Ryu, which ignited a two-run rally that increased the deficit to 3-0.

"I was just out there trying to do anything I could to get through it," Cahill said.

Of course, given the way the D-backs have struggled to score runs, it seemed like a far greater hole.

Ryu cruised through the Arizona lineup, allowing just one runner to reach second base in his five-inning stint. The left-hander allowed two hits and one walk while striking out five.

One of the two Arizona hits against him was a single to right by Paul Goldschmidt in the first inning, which extended his hitting streak to 21 games, dating back to last season.

The D-backs threatened in the fourth when Goldschmidt reached on an error and advanced to second when shortstop Hanley Ramirez was late trying to double him up before throwing late to first on Miguel Montero's grounder.

Ryu got Trumbo to foul out and fanned Gerardo Parra looking to end the inning.

It was not just Cahill who struggled for the D-backs, as reliever Josh Collmenter was unable to hold the Dodgers at bay during his stint.

Collmenter allowed both of his inherited runners to score in the fifth and allowed one in the sixth when Dee Gordon led off with a bunt single and Puig followed with a run-scoring double to left as the Dodgers went up, 6-0.

"We walked a zillion today, hit two guys, and you just can't give a team like the Dodgers that kind of opportunity," Gibson said. "They were pretty timely with their hitting, and when they got pressure on us they did a good job this series of getting them in."

The D-backs finally got a runner to third base in the sixth when Aaron Hill led off with a walk against reliever Chris Withrow and Goldschmidt singled him to second. Martin Prado grounded into a double play moving Hill to third and Montero grounded out to end the inning.

Prado redeemed himself in the ninth with a two-run single that set up Trumbo's homer.

Even the usually stout Arizona defense was not there, as the D-backs committed three errors.

"The reality is, we lost two games here," Trumbo said. " Personal stuff aside, we're going to have to go back and keep working hard. It's kind of a disappointment."

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB.
Read More: Arizona Diamondbacks, Mark Trumbo, Trevor Cahill