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News » Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2008-09-17

Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2008-09-17

Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2008-09-17
Dan Haren celebrated his birthday a few hours before the fact with his first career shutout, a 2-0 victory over San Francisco on Tuesday.

Haren, who turns 28 Wednesday, gave up only four singles and tied a career high with 12 strikeouts while returning to the form that landed him in his second consecutive All-Star Game and caused the Diamondbacks to give him a four-year, $44.75 million contract extension on Aug. 5.

The shutout ended a baffling streak in which Haren (15-8) became the subject of rumors of a possible arm injury. He gave up 26 earned runs in 40 1/3 innings in his previous seven starts.

"I could say it was shoulder tendinitis. It wasn't. There was nothing wrong," said Haren, who tied his career high with 15 victories, set last season in Oakland. He won 14 the previous two seasons.

"He worked some kinks out, mentally, as far as throwing the ball over the plate," manager Bob Melvin said. "You could tell early on he had that focus back in his eye."

Haren threw 117 pitches, one short of a season high. He had 102 entering the ninth and gave up two one-out singles before finishing the shutout on a flyout and a strikeout. The only other time he struck out 12 was at Texas on Aug. 27, 2006.

"I really didn't do much different," said Haren, who has two regular-season starts remaining. "I focused on hitting my spots, keeping the ball down. I was trying to get back to basics. I've been struggling for a while. It's nice to get that feeling back again."

DIAMONDBACKS 2, GIANTS 0: Arizona prevailed to remain 4 1/2 games behind Los Angeles in the NL West with 12 games to play. Dan Haren gave up only one hit through seven innings while being backed by solo home runs from Chris Snyder in the third and Stephen Drew in the sixth.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: September 17, 2008

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