Brahim Diaz struck twice as Real Madrid won 3-1 at Copa del Rey opponents Unionistas de Salamanca.
Zinedine Zidane did not pull any punches and rolled out a starting XI that included heavy hitters Karim Benzema and Bale in attack, along with the little-used James.
Casemiro and Fede Valverde also started in midfield, while Nacho and Eder Militao were tasked as the centre-back pairing in front of goalkeeper Alphonse Areola.
Los Blancos looked to be on their way when an early Gareth Bale shot deflected in, but Unionistas hung tough and pulled level in the second half through a fantastic strike from substitute Alvaro Romero.
The good times at Las Pistas would only last a few minutes, however, as a fortuitous goal from Brahim would restore the advantage.
Brahim would then kill off the match in stoppage time with a fine strike for his second of the night.