Bumbling Diamondbacks lead the majors in errors

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PHOENIX (AP) -- When Arizona manager A.J. Hinch recently ordered extra fielding practice before games, he stressed that it was "maintenance," not punishment.

Maybe it's time for punishment.

Even with the extra work, the only thing the Diamondbacks have maintained is their knack for kicking and throwing the ball all over the field. Arizona has 71 errors, most in the major leagues.

In the Diamondbacks' 12-8 loss to the Los Angeles Angels Sunday, they committed four errors, including three in the fifth inning to match a franchise record.

On June 21 at Seattle, the Mariners completed a three-game sweep when first baseman Tony Clark dropped a routine two-out throw with the score tied in the ninth, allowing the winning run to score.

The mistakes have left the Diamondbacks groping for answers. They reject suggestions that players have given up as a team that expected to contend has nosedived in the standings.