Pollock's 2 HRs can't end offensive struggles

D-backs have scored 11 runs in first five games of road trip

Pollock's 2 HRs can't end offensive struggles

SAN DIEGO -- The D-backs' bats -- aside from A.J. Pollock's two homers -- were quiet once again Tuesday night, as Arizona dropped its second straight game to the Padres, and third overall, 6-2, at Petco Park.

On their current road trip, the D-backs have scored 11 runs in five games, while going 2-3.

Still, they are in comfortable position when it comes to the postseason chase. They lead the Rockies by 4 1/2 games for the top National League Wild Card spot with 10 to play. Any combination of D-backs wins and Brewers losses equaling six clinches a playoff spot for Arizona.

"Minimal concern," manager Torey Lovullo said about his team's offense. "Minimal. I know last night I talked about building innings and not being able to get the big hit. We've lost a couple of tough games in a row. We're very well aware of that. But I believe in these guys, and I think they'll be just fine."

In fairness, the first three games of the trip were at San Francisco's AT&T Park, which is not a hitter-friendly place, and the other two were at Petco, which is also a paradise for pitchers.

And while they hit into three double plays Tuesday, the exit velocities of those balls were 102.2 mph, 103.7 and 105.1. In other words, they were hit hard.

"It's a crazy game and you're looking for something to spark you, and it doesn't take much," Pollock said. "Obviously, if one of those gets through, we get a big rally there. That's baseball. You talk about luck, but it's part of the game. A thing here or there, and you never know what's going to spark a team."

Hitting with runners in scoring position has been the biggest issue of late for the D-backs, as they have just three hits over their last 26 at-bats in those situations.

On Tuesday, Pollock was in scoring position every time he stepped in the box.

In the first, Pollock hit a home run to center off Travis Wood, just the second leadoff homer of his career. Then, with one out in the sixth, he smacked a homer to left off Wood.

"Just looking for a pitch I can handle," Pollock said of his approaches. "Both two-strike counts. The first one was up in the zone, just trying to hit it in the middle of the field and was able to get good barrel on it. The second one was a breaking ball up, two-strike count. Not trying to do too much, just trying to get the barrel on the ball, and, fortunately, both went out."

Over his last six games, Pollock is 10-for-20, and after being dropped to seventh in the order just before his tear started, he found himself back in the leadoff role Tuesday.

"I've been bounced over a lot of places," Pollock said. "It doesn't matter, I've just got to just concentrate on my own at-bats and be competitive. It doesn't matter where you are in the lineup, you really have a job to do wherever you are."

Steve Gilbert has covered the D-backs for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.