PHOENIX (AP) -Dan Haren looks ready to start the season.
The same can't be said for the Arizona Diamondbacks' bullpen, which coughed up a four-run lead as the Milwaukee Brewers rallied for an 8-7 victory Wednesday.
Making his eighth start of the spring, Haren gave up two runs on three hits and struck out five in five innings. Corey Hart hit a two-run homer in the third, his seventh of the spring, to cut Arizona's lead to 3-2.
The Diamondbacks roughed up Milwaukee starter Dave Bush for six runs and 13 hits in six innings, including homers by Chad Tracy, Tony Clark and Felipe Lopez.
Bush had been having a strong spring, with a 3-0 record and 2.70 ERA in seven appearances (six starts).
Once Haren left the game, Milwaukee's hitters went to work.
Chris Duffy opened the sixth with a home run off right-hander Jon Rauch, who has struggled mightily this spring.
Hart nearly hit his second homer of the day but was robbed by right fielder Justin Upton on a leaping catch near the top of the fence.
Left-hander Doug Slaten was tagged for four runs in the seventh, and Milwaukee added another run in the eighth on a base hit by Craig Counsell. That would prove to be the difference as Arizona scored once in the ninth and left the tying run at third base.
``That's the way it's been the past couple of days, one bad inning for us,' said Arizona manager Bob Melvin, whose team fell to 11-20. ``We're doing some good things early on, some good things offensively. ... We are running the bases a little better ... but one bad inning out of the bullpen has cost us the game.'
Haren, who had a career-high 16 wins (16-8) and 216 strikeouts in his first season in Arizona in 2008, said he is set to go.
``I felt really good out there. I'm right where I want to be,' Haren said. ``I'm definitely ready for the real thing. It's been kind of hard to get the adrenaline going, and now it is going to be the opposite - keeping it under control.'
He is working to refine his cut fastball, which he began throwing last season.
``It's been good, helps me give the hitters a different look,' Haren said.
Before the game, Brewers manager Ken Macha praised Bush.
``I guess I must have put a little whammy on him,' Macha said. ``He was a little bit out of sync, his timing was off a little bit.'
Macha, hired as Brewers manager in the offseason, lauded the organization's minor league coaching staff for the way young players are prepared to play for the big club in spring training.
``They are not afraid when you put them in. They have been schooled properly,' said Macha, whose team is 19-10-3 and plays its final home game of the spring Thursday against the Chicago White Sox.
Notes: Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun sat out as a precaution after bruising the thumb on his throwing hand on a defensive play early in Tuesday night's game against San Diego. Braun left the game and had X-rays, which were negative. ... The Brewers placed veteran infielder Mike Lamb on release waivers, meaning he is free to sign with any team if he clears waivers. INF Alcides Escobar was optioned to Triple-A Nashville. ... Milwaukee's Bill Hall delivered a pinch-hit single after missing Tuesday night's game due to a tooth extraction. ... Arizona optioned left-handed reliever Travis Blackley to Triple-A Reno.
The Associated Press News Service
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