TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Chad Billingsley didn't throw change-ups often last season.
But he worked on the pitch during Saturday's spring training outing and was pleased with the results.
Billingsley threw three scoreless innings in a 7-3 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks at Tucson Electric Park. He allowed three hits, struck out four and walked one, lowering his spring ERA to 1.80.
"I got the chance to work on a lot of stuff," he said. "One thing I was working on as far as my delivery was making sure my arm path was consistent."
Billingsley said he has been working on the change-up for years, but hasn't thrown it often during the regular season.
"It's a matter of getting the confidence," he said. "You've just got to learn how to use it in situations that you'd need to use it."
Blake DeWitt hit a three-run home run, his first of the spring, off Arizona's Kevin Mulvey to break a scoreless tie in the third inning.
Mulvey, a candidate for the fifth spot in the rotation, allowed three runs and a hit in three innings. He struck out four and walked three.
"Walks are never good, especially piled in front of a home run," Mulvey said. "I feel like I was down in the zone for most of the outing until the second time in the stretch. I felt like I rushed a little bit, got ahead of myself."
Tony Abreu's two-run triple cut the lead to 3-2 in the fifth. Rusty Ryal and Brandon Allen each hit solo home runs for the Diamondbacks.
"The guys who are vying for roster spots and playing time are all doing pretty well," Diamondbacks manager A.J. Hinch said. "Ryal's diving play at third base was nice to see. Abreu continues to impress at short and delivered a big hit. It's nice when the plot thickens a little bit. We still have a lot of time left. There's plenty of time for further evaluation, but to get them playing crisply is good to see."
For the Dodgers, Eric Gagne allowed three runs in two-thirds of an inning. His ERA is 20.25.
Notes: Attendance was 11,571, the first sellout at TEP since March 15, 2009, in a Diamondbacks' game against the Chicago Cubs. Attendance at that game was 11,455. ... The Dodgers' Garret Anderson is expected to make his spring debut Sunday against the Rangers. ... Dodgers hitting coach Don Mattingly managed the squad in Tucson while manager Joe Torre and several starters, including Manny Ramirez, are in Taiwan. ... Arizona center fielder Chris Young returned to camp after leaving for a couple days because of a death in the family.