De La Rosa became just the fifth D-backs starter to work at least nine innings with a no-decision when the game went into extra innings. His lone mistake was a two-run homer to J.T. Realmuto in the seventh, scattering six hits with five strikeouts in the process.
"Takeaway was what they said -- have to be more focused, go there and fight," said De La Rosa, who set a career high for innings pitched in a game. "Compete for the team. Get a W, no matter what. That means go today and pitch like how I know how to do."
So efficient was De La Rosa that he needed just 94 pitches (66 strikes) to finish nine innings. He retired the final nine batters he faced, including the side in order in the ninth against Miami's 3-4-5 hitters on four pitches.
Did manager Chip Hale consider keeping him in?
"I just felt like at that point -- and Mike said the same thing -- it's not only the pitch count, it's the up and downs," Hale said. "He had gone up and down nine times, so I think that was enough."
De La Rosa, naturally, wouldn't have minded the extra work.
"I was almost ready to go back," De La Rosa said. "To try and help get that win. Help my team. I felt good. I felt ready to go back."
De La Rosa induced 14 groundouts, including an inning-ending double play in the sixth. He avoided damage in the second following a two-out double by Christian Yelich by snaring a liner off the bat of Adeiny Hechavarria. De La Rosa worked around a lead-off single by Ichiro Suzuki and a sacrifice bunt by inducing two straight groundouts in the third.
Over his past three outings, De La Rosa has allowed just six runs on 17 hits over 23 innings, and the team has won all three games.
"Tried to attack and tried to get comfortable with all my pitches and throw all my pitches for a strike," De La Rosa said.
Added Hale: "He basically did, and executed the plan we talked about with [Harkey] and [bullpen coach Mel Stottlemyre Jr.] with our pitchers from Day 1 of Spring Training. It was a very, very good job."