SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- In an efficient outing against the Dodgers, D-backs starter Brandon McCarthy was able to get through four innings without reaching his 60-pitch limit.
The right-hander tossed just 52 pitches in the opener for both teams.
"That's always the plan," McCarthy said of getting outs with a minimal number of pitches. "As quick as I can get them, the better. I don't have the stuff to get deep in counts with guys. I don't have the plus stuff to get you to swing and miss. I need you to swing at something moving early and get yourself out and get the next guy in the box."
The four innings were the most McCarthy had thrown in a spring debut, but with the longer than usual spring the Arizona pitchers had more time to throw simulated games to build up their pitch counts.
"He threw good," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said of McCarthy. "He threw a lot of strikes, executed the game plan that we wanted to. He gave up one run, but he kind of set the tone for us. He let us play defense behind him, we made some nice plays behind him. He threw the ball really good, it's a positive day for him."
McCarthy was able to use all his pitches.
"I threw everything, just kind of a steady mix," McCarthy said. "It was close to the in-season the mix we'd like to use."
Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.