Chad Billingsley suffered through his second consecutive four-inning outing at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday in the Dodgers' 5-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks to cap their short two-game series.
Billingsley was able to pitch into the fifth inning on Tuesday but was unable to record any outs. All five batters he faced in the top of the fifth reached base via single. But manager Don Mattingly still liked what he saw from his starter.
"Honestly I thought Chad was pretty good today. He should have gotten out of the second with nothing, when he got the strikeout and the ball got away," Mattingly said. "[Justin] Upton hits the ball up the middle that if it's a step left it's a two ball. [Billingsley] was just a little bit unlucky."
Billingsley, who had one unintentional walk and three strikeouts in his four innings Tuesday, agreed.
"That's just the way the game goes. You can't do anything about it," Billingsley said. "I felt comfortable out there, attacking hitters. I was locating well today."
Billingsley said he worked in his side session on his delivery, specifically getting his hand out of his glove a little bit sooner. "Today I had pretty good timing with all my pitches," he said.
"The ball came out [of his hand] better tonight. Obviously we don't like the result, but I'm encouraged by how the ball came out," Mattingly said. "He's been working hard trying to get back to where he started the season, and getting his delivery where it needs to be, and just getting more consistent with it."
The Dodgers hope that the results come soon for Billingsley, who has allowed 20 runs (16 earned) in 24 1/3 innings over his last five starts, with 15 walks and 20 strikeouts. That beginning of the season for Billingsley, with featured a 1.33 ERA through three starts with just one walk and 17 strikeouts, is starting to seem like a long time ago.
The Dodgers move on from one two-game series against a divisional foe to another two-game series against a divisional foe, as the Dodgers head south on Interstate 5 to face the San Diego Padres for the third time this season. Chris Capuano starts the opener for the Dodgers' shortest road trip of the season, with Clayton Richard getting the call for San Diego. Wednesday's game is an odd 3:35 p.m. PDT start time.