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An unofficial Arizona Diamondbacks community and blog



Updated: 2017-09-24T17:05:43-04:00

 



The Arizona Diamondbacks are in the post-season

2017-09-24T17:05:43-04:00

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Time to celebrate, folks. We’re in the playoffs for the first time since 2011.

The Arizona Diamondbacks entered this afternoon’s game at Chase Field against the Miami Marlins with a magic number of just one, meaning a win would guarantee them a spot in the wild-card game. Turns out, they didn’t even need to wait that long. First, the St. Louis Cardinals lost to the Pittsburgh Pirates, and just not the Chicago Cubs finished off the Milwaukee Brewers, meaning neither Cardinals nor Brewers can catch the D-backs in the wild-card race. Home-field advantage will also be clinched, with a win at Chase this afternoon, or a loss by the Colorado Rockies against the Padres in San Diego.

It’s the first time the Diamondbacks have made the post-season as a wild-card, having won the NL West on all their previous playoff adventures. This is a major turnaround for a team which won only 69 games last year, and needed a last-day win to avoid the second pick in this year’s draft. Many, many kudos are due to rookie General Manager Mike Hazen and rookie manager Torey Lovullo, for their parts in helping engineer such a spectacular change in fortunes. Even if the post-season were to last only one game, this will still have been one of, if not the best Diamondbacks campaign in SnakePit history.

Pop the champagne, folks. We’re going to the playoffs!




Preview #156: Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Miami Marlins

2017-09-24T15:00:04-04:00

Well, SOMETHING is probably going to happen today. Today's Lineups MIAMI MARLINS ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS Dee Gordon - 2B David Peralta - LF Giancarlo Stanton - RF Ketel Marte - SS Christian Yelich - CF Paul Goldschmidt - 1B Marcell Ozuna - LF J.D. Martinez - RF J.T. Realmuto - C Daniel Descalso - 2B Justin Bour - 1B Jake Lamb - 3B Brian Anderson - 3B A.J. Pollock - CF Miguel Rojas - SS Chris Herrmann - C Dan Straily - RHP Patrick Corbin - LHP With the losses by everybody last night, the magic numbers drop to one for the D-backs to clinch a post-season spot and home-field advantage. A victory for Arizona in the rubber game of this series will take care of both. Otherwise, we do need the Brewers AND Cardinals to lose today to get in that way, and the Rockies to lose to ensure the game is played at Chase Field. Both St. Louis and Milwakee contests are well under way, since they started at 10:35 and 11:10 am, Arizona time, against Pittsburgh and Chicago respectively, so we should have a good handle on those results. As yesterday, Colorado face San Diego a little later, beginning at 1:40pm. Though if yesterday is any guide, they’ll still be done before us. The last three Arizona games have taken a mind-numbing 3:47, 3:54 and 3:51, despite none going to extras, It has been a combination of offense - 62 runs scored in total - and September rosters, with both managers effectively having an infinite supply of relievers to play match-up with. Only one team in recorded baseball history has had a longer run of consecutive games over 33⁄4 hours. That came earlier this month (hey, September call ups!), when the Angels played five such: however, three were extra innings. We’re the first NL team ever with 3 such contests, while pitching 9 innings or fewer. An even more unwanted mark: if we allow double digit runs today, that would tie the franchise record of three times in a row. That has been done twice, in Sep 2002, as well as last season when we conceded 14, 14, and 10 against the Dodgers and Nationals. We’ve allowed 7+ in three straight games, but have still managed to win two out of the three: we did that last year too, in a series against Atlanta at Chase Field where we won 9-8 and 10-9, around a 4-7 defeat in the middle. So the offense has been doing its part: but it would be an awful lot easier for us to clinch, if we get a quality start from Patrick Corbin today! [...]



Game #156: September 24, Diamondbacks vs. Marlins

2017-09-24T15:00:03-04:00

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Snake Bytes 9/24: Close Enough to Taste

2017-09-24T09:00:05-04:00

Magic number down to 1. Marlins 12, Diamondbacks 6 [D’backs.com] D-backs fall short in first chance to clinch WC - Home runs from Brandon Drury, Paul Goldschmidt, and J.D. Martinez were not enough to clinch a wild card spot for the Diamondbacks last night. Chris Iannetta, Taijuan Walker, and Adam Rosales were the only two starters who failed to reach base for Arizona. Giancarlo Stanton belted his 57th home run of the season. The first 10,000 fans through the gate received a t-shirt commemorating J.D. Martinez 4 HR game in Los Angeles. "The Marlins played well," D-backs first baseman Paul Goldschmidt said. "They've got a really good team. We played bad and made a few mistakes, and they took advantage of it. It's part of it. We'll come out and try to get a win tomorrow." [Arizona Sports] D-backs’ loss to Miami puts playoff clinch on hold - Taijuan Walker continued to struggle in September after getting out of the first 2 innings rather quickly. Taijuan’s night was finished after 3 2⁄3 innings pitched. Final game score was 23 after he gave up 6 hits, 3 walks, 6 runs (3 earned), and struck out 6. He has likely pitched himself out of the postseason rotation with his past 2 starts should the Diamondbacks make it to the NLDS. Torey Lovullo used 8 pitchers by the time the game was finished. “Not the kind of night you hope to see. I just think nothing was really clicking for us. Couple of good moments offensively. I think the three run home run by Paul got us right back into the game. A big home run by JD and Brandon Drury as well, but J.D. sets a club record for home runs in a month. It was a great moment for him and for this ball club. I just think we never got synced up with our guys on the mound today. I think defensively we had a couple of miscues that led to several unearned runs. I think we just need to tighten things up defensively, and if we did that today we would have been in a totally different situation.” Diamondbacks News [Fangraphs] What Numbers J.D. Martinez Looks At - It is always an interesting exercise to get a player’s insight and determine if said player is a “stat freak” or more traditional. It does not make much sense to me to completely ignore tools that are available that can possibly assist. So what does J.D. Martinez pay attention to in order to improve his play? “I track my swings and misses in the zone,” he said. “I can deal with swing and miss out of the zone. If I’m swinging and missing in the zone, I don’t like that. That tells me something is wrong. It tells me that something is not right with my swing, I’m fouling balls off. If the ball’s in the strike zone, I should be able to hit it. There are certain situations, take a pitch, that’s fine. But when I swing and it’s a strike — especially on a fastball and I’m not hitting it — that’s not good.” [D’backs.com] Martinez sets club record for HRs in 1 month - In April of 2001, Luis Gonzalez set the franchise record for most home runs in a single month with 13. Even though he has seen a substantial dip in his contact rate inside the strike zone since joining the Diamondbacks, possibly from seeing less breaking balls, he has destroyed the baseball at an alarming rate breaking Gonzo’s 16 year record with his 14th September home run last night. He deserves a hefty payday at the end of the season, and I am just glad we have been witness to his talent. "You just laugh now," Paul Goldschmidt said. "He's been so good for us. He's really carried us since he came over here these last two months. He's been a huge part of this team, and it's just really, really impressive. It's fun to watch." [MLB.com] Starter fatigue setting in as D-backs near clinch - A blip in the road that we have not had to see frequently this season. The Diamondbacks starting rotation, one of the best in the league this season, has not been particularly effective this past week. Could the grind of a long season be getting to some of them? "I [...]



Arizona Diamondbacks 6, Miami Marlins 12: Blinded By The Light

2017-09-24T03:49:09-04:00

A postseason berth eludes Arizona. Record: 89-66. Pace: 93-69. Change on 2016: +24. Jim over the Snake Pit intercom: “Keegan, I’m going to need you to step into the office. Make sure to grab the door behind you.” Keegan entering the office: “You wanted to see me, boss?” Would it be too much to ask to recap a win? It’s bad enough J.D. Martinez nearly broke his hand in my first recap. Woe is me. I preemptively signed up for this game feeling it was likely that this would be the night the Diamondbacks clinched a postseason berth. After all, the Diamondbacks clinched their last playoff berth, the National League West Division Title, on this very night 6 long years ago. The fact that I even have the opportunity to type those words this season is enough to make me proud. Unfortunately, the only thing I left this game with was a well put together yet undersized J.D. Martinez commemorative 4 home run shirt. It was limited to the first 10,000 fans through the gate with the only sizes to choose from being medium and extra large. 29,259 in attendance were left without a shirt, and of the 10,000 who are an in-between size, such as myself, were left with either a dress or looking like we shop at the Baby GAP. The night started out very positive both at Chase Field and due to forces beyond the team’s control. The Pittsburgh Pirates put a quick hurting on the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1st inning. St. Louis initially took the lead in the 1st scoring 2 runs, but the Pirates would answer with 8 of their own en route to a 11-6 win. That surely should have been enough to fire up the Diamondbacks with an opportunity to clinch a Wild Card spot. Taijuan Walker started this game much the same way he began his last in San Francisco. Walker struck out Dee Gordon to begin the contest. He allowed Christian Yelich to reach on a single, but made a strong pickoff move against Yelich to end the inning with no damage. David Peralta led off the bottom half of the frame for Arizona and beat out an infield single, but was erased shortly after when A.J. Pollock grounded into a double play. Paul Goldschmidt and J.D. Martinez both followed with walks. However, Chris Iannetta decided to take the night off after his eventful game last night and grounded out to end the 1st inning after roughly 22 minutes elapsed. Only 3 and a half hours to go... Walker began the 2nd by allowing a double to Marcell Ozuna, but proceeded to strike out Justin Bour, J.T. Realmuto, Brian Anderson again escaping without any damage. By that point he had already thrown 38 pitches and would not last much longer. Brandon Drury drew first blood with a solo shot to Souvenir City. Jake Lamb hit a sharp liner back to Marlins pitcher Dillon Peters, but the ball ricocheted to shortstop Miguel Rojas who threw Lamb out at first. 1-0 Diamondbacks after the 2nd. Taijuan Walker has nobody but himself to blame for the debacle that ensued in the 3rd inning. Perhaps he was using his glove to eat popcorn between innings? He surrendered a double to Rojas to begin the inning, and then misplayed two routine soft hit ground balls from Peters and Gordon to follow. Gordon’s speed could have feasibly been a factor in the second error. Giancarlo Stanton came to the plate with two on and no outs, with the score tied at 1, and laced a double past David Peralta in left field to give the Marlins a 3-1 lead. Attribute the lack of altitude to the windows and roof being closed at the time. The bleeding would not stop there as 6 more Marlins would come to the plate for an at bat in that inning. Walker would strikeout Yelich, walk Ozuna, give up a single to Bour, hit Realmuto, and allow Anderson to hit a sacrifice fly. The agony finally came to an end when Rojas popped out after the Marlins were able to bat around. I wasn’t feeling entirely optimistic at this point, but had not completely abandoned ship after last night’s escapade. With the top of the lineup due to bat, the[...]



Arizona Diamondbacks 6, Miami Marlins 12

2017-09-24T00:02:05-04:00

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Walks and errors killed the D-backs chances of clinching a post-season spot tonight at Chase Field.

Brandon Drury got the evening started on the right foot, with a solo home-run in the second to give Arizona a 1-0 lead. But a pair of errors by Taijuan Walker snowballed into a five-run third inning for the Marlins. Paul Goldschmidt made it a game again, his three-run shot (above) being Goldy’s 36th of the season. Unfortunately, Walker was unable to get out of the fourth. He lasted 3.2 innings, allowing seven runs on six hits and three walks, with six K’s, though four of those runs were unearned.

J.D. Martinez had his contractually obligated home-run in the fifth, his 27th for Arizona, and setting a single month record for the team - it was his 14th this month. But J.J. Hoover and David Hernandez didn’t do their bullpen ladder positions any good, each man allowing a pair of runs in relief. The D-backs ended the night having allowed eight walks, five of which came around to score, and committing four errors. The Cardinals lost, and the Rockies are about to lose, so it seems the magic number for both home field advantage and a post-season spot will be one. Here’s to tomorrow being the day for both.

Keegan will be along with the full recap when he comes back from Chase.




Game #155: September 23, Diamondbacks 6, Marlins 12

2017-09-23T19:00:02-04:00

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Preview #155: Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Miami Marlins

2017-09-23T19:00:02-04:00

Six years ago today, the team clinched their last post-season spot. Could it happen again tonight? Today's Lineups MIAMI MARLINS ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS Dee Gordon - 2B David Peralta - LF Giancarlo Stanton - RF A.J. Pollock - CF Christian Yelich - CF Paul Goldschmidt - 1B Marcell Ozuna - LF J.D. Martinez - RF Justin Bour - 1B Chris Iannetta - C J.T. Realmuto - C Brandon Drury - 2B Brian Anderson - 3B Jake Lamb - 3B Miguel Rojas - SS Adam Rosales - SS Dillon Peters - LHP Taijuan Walker - RHP Everything could be decided by the end of tonight, though the D-backs would need some help. And even with that it’s almost certainly not going to happen until after the end of the game at Chase Field. The magic numbers to clinch both a post-season spot and home-field advantage are both down to two. If Arizona wins today, while St. Louis loses in Pittsburgh (first pitch shortly, at 4:10pm) and Colorado are beaten by San Diego (they get under way at Petco half an hour after us, at 5:40pm), we will be certain of playing the wild-card game at Chase Field on October 4. Defeat for the D-backs and... well, we’ll come back tomorrow and try again! We’ll certainly be hoping for better results from our starting pitching than we’ve seen last time round the rotation. 0-for-5 in quality starts. Indeed, nobody got an out past the fifth inning OR allowed fewer than four earned runs, never mind both! The overall line in the past five games by our starters is this:AZ rotation: 28.1 IP, 33 H, 26 R, 26 ER, 16 BB, 22 SO, 8.26 ERAYuck. Obviously, that ain’t going to fly in the post-season and would lead to a rapid exit - even though the D-backs are 2-3 in those games, having been only narrowly outscored by a 32-35 margin. But as ever, people need to look at the broader picture, not over-react to one bad start by our potential playoff rotation. For what’s more likely: that the entire starting pitching staff have suddenly lost the talent which still has them the 2nd-best rotation in the majors? That hitters, who have been unable to figure them out for 51⁄2 months, suddenly and simultaneously cracked all the codes? Or that this is one of those random clusters of results that happen, and that the evidence of the previous 149 games, actually matters more than the last handful? It’s not as if we will be seeing the Padres or Marlins in the post-season. So even if they’ve broken the seal, they would need to be on the phone to their colleagues in Colorado and Los Angeles for it to matter. [Do players do that? I dunno] The bottom line is, we are now in the happy situation where this team will be defined by what they do after Game 162. No-one will remember the series in San Diego where our starters got tattooed. If the same thing happens in the wild-card game, it will be that which decides the season, not some random late-season outing in Petco. Every starter will always have his bad days: in many ways, It’s far better for the team to get them all out of the way now. [...]