And believe it or not, it was the Diamondbacks who showed up at the ballpark today with the makings of a real team and pulled off a much-needed victory over the vastly underrated Colorado Rockies.
But let's start at the beginning. First of all, the night began with 6 of us SnakePitters at the game for MiniSnakePitFestPaloozaThon - The Jenning, since I am in town and seeing my first two Dbacks games here at home tonight and Wednesday afternoon. I think everyone but Mrs. SnakePit was there by first pitch, even DbacksSkins, whom kishi and I predicted would show up in the 2nd inning. If you heard some people yelling some utter nonsense very good heckles ("Booo-lowitzki", "oi oi oi", "ov-er-ra-ted") near the otherwise-quiet left field line sections, that was us. The attendance was announced at over 25,000, but we all agreed that, despite the crowd growing after the paltry showing at first pitch, it was certainly the smallest group of 25,000 people we've ever seen.
It didn't take us long to get to the Rockies' starter, Jason Marquis. Augie Ojeda broke up his second no-hitter in a row with his single to left in the first inning, but it was Mark Reynolds who had an impressive night - 2 for 3 with a walk and a strikeout (which came in the 7th on some what looked like some questionable strike calls). At the beginning of Reynolds's at-bat in the second, 'Skins yelled at Mark to give us the lead - which he could only do by homering - and he promptly obliged!! He hammered a pitch to left field near the bullpen. Reynolds also accounted for the Diamondbacks' second run in the 4th inning when he scored Chad Tracy, who had doubled to lead it off. Sadly, the Diamondbacks loaded the bases with one out that inning, but Jon Garland K'd and Felipe Lopez ground out to end that threat. (Luckily, it did not come back to haunt them.) Tracy also had a great night offensively - in addition to the double in the 4th, he had an RBI single (Ojeda) in the 5th and scored on Miguel Montero's home run.
The SnakePit section was strangely prophetic tonight. Not only did 'Skins totally call Reynolds' home run, but Jim questioned Ojeda's speed - after which, he scores from first on the ball that got right past Colorado right fielder Brad Hawpe. Then, as we were discussing Miggy's poor offensive numbers, he goes and doubles his batting average (from 0.077 to 0.143, at the time) with a 3-run home run! Montero's home run capped the scoring for Arizona (and saved the bunnies from the wrath of Jim).
The Colorado Rockies had scored 2 runs of their own by then and would add one more in the 8th. Jon Garland was throwing very well - throwing strikes, throwing 'em fast (pace-wise), and scattering his hits well. The Rockies' run in the 3rd inning has to be blamed on Jim - he left to get dinner (and Mrs. SnakePit) and then the wheels fell off the wagon. Upton and Lopez got together and missed a pop up to right by Iannetta, Garland threw the ball away to allow the runner to get to second, and with two outs, Fowler's flare to left just barely got by a diving CoJack. Ian Stewart hit a solo home run to start the 6th inning (I can't remember if we blamed that one on anyone?), and it was then Jon Garland started to worry us - all his outs were well-struck balls, and fly outs at that. He got himself into trouble in the 7th (and I think most of us were surprised he even started the inning) with a double by Barmes and then a 3-2-count walk to Fowler with two outs. Schoeneweis relieved Garland in his best-suited role, the LOOGY - Lefty One Out GuY, striking out Stewart. He stayed in to get Helton in the 8th, after which Pena came in and promptly got himself into trouble. This, while it technically could be blamed on me because I made 'Skins come buy me an ice cream, is really 'Skins's fault for owing me an ice cream in the first place. :P Pinch-hitter Spillborghs doubled to score Atkins, but Pena then got Iannetta to fly out to Chris Young in deeeep center field - his first of two terrific, web-gem-like catch of the night. Qualls came in for a surprisingly easy (except for CY's other great catch) 9th inning to get the save and nail down the win
All the SnakePit editors (and an author!) seemed to have returned home safe & sound - no catastrophes at the ballpark necessitating Azreous to take over! Quite an interesting gameday thread tonight - you guys managed to get close to 700 comments even without our most prolific commenters! (My bet is 'Skins will come along in the middle of the night and add to it...) We will try to think of a good nickname for Garland, Jim is in fact readying more animal sacrifices, and please let us know if you guys decide to fly out with pitchforks so we can ready the bail money. Technically, 28 people made 683 comments, though a few of us don't really count. ;) Present in the thread were soco, SeanMillerSavior, Pyromnc, Azreous, Snakebitten, Jim McLennan, hotclaws, TwinnerA, Sprankton, AJforAZ, dahlian, kishi, IndyDBack, mrssoco, AF DBacks Fanatic, Tooch27, singaporedbacksfan, Gravity, Shifty1, Muu, DKuon, luckycc, venomfan, ASUJon, J Up, Snake Bitten, TAP, and myself, snakecharmer.
I do have some pictures to post from tonight but I am super tired already (I just typed "pitchers" instead of "pictures") so I will edit the article tomorrow and add them. There also might be typos and formatting issues up there which will have to wait till morning as well. Thanks so much everyone for making my first game at Chase Field a LOT of fun!! :) I'm so glad we helped the Dbacks win and I plan to see another great game Wednesday. (Someone else is on that recap - I have plans with family after the game.) Let's hope this new and improved, mostly-well-playing Dbacks teams sticks around for a while!
[Warning: Photo-heavy thread, now with photos from last night!]