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Banda staying confident despite rough outing

MLB.com

PHOENIX -- Anthony Banda knows days like Tuesday are just a part of the learning experience.

Banda labored through a 9-4 loss to the Astros, his fourth career start since being called up July 21. The Astros tagged the 24-year-old left-hander for eight runs on nine hits and three walks. Houston teed off for five runs during the second inning alone.

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PHOENIX -- Anthony Banda knows days like Tuesday are just a part of the learning experience.

Banda labored through a 9-4 loss to the Astros, his fourth career start since being called up July 21. The Astros tagged the 24-year-old left-hander for eight runs on nine hits and three walks. Houston teed off for five runs during the second inning alone.

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For the second straight outing -- the previous against the hot-hitting Dodgers -- Banda did not last beyond the fourth inning. D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said he thought the southpaw never really found a rhythm, and his mistakes against a good offensive team like Houston proved costly.

"Give them some credit," said Lovullo, "but in Anthony's case, he had a couple moments where things were starting to show a positive outcome -- or perhaps show a positive outcome, but made a couple mistakes at the wrong time. He went as far as he could."

Banda, who took full ownership for his hand in Tuesday's result, said he's moving on from the performance. He missed spots, couldn't locate the ball consistently, was unable to stay low in the zone and didn't establish the inside like he said he wanted to.

"Everything just piled up," Banda said.

Nevertheless, Lovullo expressed confidence in his young pitcher's upside. Even in the rough outing, Banda -- whose callup and addition to the rotation was in response to the absence of starter Robbie Ray -- flashed the potential that has the club excited about Banda's future. 

"I think [Banda's] mound presence, the ability to rebound to make adjustments from pitch to pitch has been evident," Lovullo said. "We've seen it. And today, he just really couldn't get grounded and trend in the positive direction. Is [a performance like Tuesday's] a youthful mistake? Maybe, but we've seen all sorts of pitchers have those types of moments."

While unhappy with the loss, Banda remained unbothered -- "You learn from it and you move on," he said. The learning curve thus far has been steep, but Banda is turning his focus to the next challenge, using Tuesday's outing as a moment to learn from.

"You have to have confidence up here," Banda said. "You can't be scared to do what you need to do to be able to get yourself through a ballgame.

"You live and learn, you move on, and I'm definitely learning from this and taking the positives and walking away from this and definitely going to get better."

Kaelen Jones is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the D-backs on Tuesday.

Arizona Diamondbacks