PHOENIX (AP) — The Arizona Diamondbacks were refreshed and ready after the four-day All-Star break, playing arguably their best game of the season in a lopsided 10-1 victory over the Washington Nationals.
Carson Kelly started the team’s offensive onslaught with a laser-beam double to lead off the bottom of the first, Ketel Marte added a three-run homer in the third and Daulton Varsho clobbered a 451-foot solo shot in the sixth. On the mound, Zac Gallen delivered seven innings of shutout ball, giving up just two hits.
“All around, it was a very solid game,” Kelly said. “Offense, defense, pitching. I think the break helped and we’ll try to continue to ride this wave.”
The All-Star break didn’t provide much relief for the Nationals, who lost for the 16th time in 18 games.
Gallen (5-2) took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning before César Hernández sent a soft liner with two outs that deflected off Gallen’s glove and fell behind the mound. Gallen, shortstop Geraldo Perdomo and Marte all converged on the ball, but no one had time to throw out the speedy Hernández.
“I felt like I had all four or five pitches today, good command of them,” Gallen said. “You like to think every time you have four or five pitches, you can throw a no-hitter.”
Gallen struck out seven and walked none.
“He was looking like he could potentially throw a no-hitter,” manager Torey Lovullo said. “I was probably the most satisfied person when he gave up that hit. It’s a stressful time when you’re talking about potential pitch counts. He had good stuff and it obviously showed up through seven innings.”
Marte launched his ninth homer of the season in the third, giving the D-backs a 4-0 lead. He hit a changeup from lefty Patrick Corbin (4-13) to center field where it just cleared the wall above the 413-foot…