One-third of the way through the 2016 season, the Arizona Diamondbacks’ pitching and home struggles show no signs of stopping.
George Springer finished a triple shy of the cycle and had four RBIs to spark the Houston Astros from the leadoff spot, lifting the Astros to an 8-5 victory over the D-backs on Tuesday.
The D-backs are now 9-20 at Chase Field, the second-worst home record in baseball. They’re 23-31 overall, putting them on pace for a 69-93 record.
Arizona had an opportunity to put starting Astros pitcher Lance McCullers (2-1) on the ropes in the first inning, but left the bases loaded. The Diamondbacks let another opportunity slip away in the fifth inning, managing just one run after loading the bases with one out.
"When we have runners in scoring position, there are times when our at-bats aren't as good as other times," Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale said. "It's stuff we're working on."
D-backs starting pitcher Patrick Corbin (2-5) labored out of the gate, starting with Springer's double. Arizona's left-hander needed 24 pitches to get through the first inning, but managed to keep the Astros from scoring.
Corbin has yet to notch a win at home this season, and the D-backs’ starting rotation now has a 5.26 ERA on the season, the worst in team history.
McCullers had even more trouble in the bottom half, leading to a 33-minute opening frame. Arizona had three hits in the inning and scored two runs, on Jake Lamb's single and Chris Herrmann's fielder's choice.
McCullers steadied himself. Corbin did not.
McCullers had his first big league hit -- a sharp single to left -- off Corbin in the second inning and Springer followed with a three-run homer just over the wall in right for a 3-2 lead.
Jake Marisnick added a run-scoring single off Corbin in the fourth inning and Springer chased him with another to left.
Corbin allowed seven runs and nine hits in 3 2/3 innings, his shortest outing of the season.
"Everything wasn't in sync," Corbin said after throwing so many pitches in the first inning. "Maybe you try to use your body more and your arm is behind. It's just something I had to work out."
McCullers started having control issues in the fifth inning, walking two and allowing a run to score on a wild pitch before striking out Herrmann with runners on second and third.
He allowed three runs and six hits, with seven strikeouts and four walks.
Valbuena put Houston up 8-2 by hitting Randall Delgado's first pitch of the fifth inning over the wall in right.
Arizona 1B Paul Goldschmidt had his first three-hit game since last Aug. 22, against Cincinnati. ... Marisnick has seven hits his last four games after having six his first 28. ... Altuve is 11 for 25 during a six-game hitting streak.
Astros: CF Carlos Gomez returned to the lineup after missing 13 games with a bruised ribcage. He hit seventh and finished 1 for 3.
Diamondbacks: OF David Peralta, out since May 15 with a right wrist injury, could rejoin the team this weekend after taking batting practice before Tuesday's game.
Astros: RHP Mike Fiers, Wednesday's starter against Arizona, gave up a season-high seven runs in 3 2/3 innings against the Los Angeles Angels in his last start.
Diamondbacks: LHP Robbie Ray is 1-2 with a 2.63 ERA in five road starts heading into Wednesday's game at Houston.