Record: 80-60. Pace: 93-69. Change on last year: +23. Magic Number: 16.
The first part of my headline is fairly easy to understand. It means that today the Diamondbacks had a chance to put one of the final nails in the Giants' coffin. The second part is a little more cryptic. Read on after the break as I give you the amazing, gory details in an attempt to explain what Rhino Dino Mode is!
The Dbacks had Daniel Hudson going for them today, and the Giants were countering with Ryan Vogelsong. Huddy was coming off of a beautiful start against the Rockies, and Vogelsong was coming off a not-so-great-but-still-solid game against the Cubs.
The day started off quietly enough. Aside from what appeared to be one of those "unintentional inentional walks" to Justin Upton, the Dbacks went down very quietly in the first innning. Cody Ross, however, did not like how quiet it was up to that point, and promptly hit a lead-off home run to make the score 1-0 in favor of the Giants.
After that, the game had all the hallmarks of the pitcher's duel that we were promised last night, but denied. In fact, there was fair amount of speculation around the 'Pit that Ryan Vogelsong and Tim Lincecum had switched bodies, and we were actually facing Timmeh tonight. Until the eighth inning, the Dbacks only managed to earn four baserunners against Vogelsong, and no runs of any kind. Meanwhile, over the same period, Hudson only gave up five baserunners, and allowed only the one run.
In the top of the fourth, things got a little... interesting. Justin Upton was batting with no one out, and a runner on first. The home plate umpire, Brian Knight, who had been struggling to make decent calls all game, called Upton out on strikes. JUp jumped up at the plate in frustration, and then started walking away while voicing his displeasure, and told Knight that he had missed two calls in that at-bat. Then Kight ejected Upton. Furious, Justin charged back at the upmire, and Gibby barely managed to get between the two before Upton attacked Knight. Collin Cowgill was brought in to replace Upton.
Fast forward to the eighth. There's one out. Vogelsong is pitching. Ryan Roberts is at the plate. Then, as CaptainCanuck so eloquently put it, The Dread Pirate went into "Rhino Dino Mode" and deposited a ball in the left field bleachers. We've got a tie ball game, now.
After that piece of beauty, the offense got going. Parra reached on an infield single, and drove Vogelsong out of the game. Blum, who was pinch hitting for Hudson, faced Jeremy Affeldt drew a walk. This got rid of Affeldt. Enter Singles TOOTBLAN Willie Bloomquist to face Ramon Ramirez. Let's just say Good old Willie didn't live up to his many nicknames. He shot a triple down the right field line, which cleared the bases. Aaron Hill hit a single to bring in Bloomquist, and after that Cowgil and Miguel Montero went down quietly.
To finish the game off, David Hernandez and J. J. Putz, came in and threw a perfect inning each in relief. The Easy Button got the save, and Hernandez added yet another inning to his total this year.
Went to ASU: Willie Bloomquist (33%)
Knows Andre Ethier?: Ryan Roberts (25.1%), Daniel Hudson (16.9%)
Wildcat: Paul Goldschmidt (-15.4%)
Knows Wilbur and Wilma: Chris Young (-9%), Colin Cowgill (-4.8%)
Not quite as robust a Game Day Thread as the past couple days, but I chalk this up to both it being a day game (people wanting to be with other people), and people having errands to run. Irregardless, Mr imstillhungry95 took top honors with 136 posts, and he was joined by: Rockkstarr12, AZDBACKR, GuruB, The so-called Beautiful, CaptainCanuck, piratedan7, Dan Strittmatter, luckycc, VouxCroux, blue bulldog, hotclaws, Stile4aly, emilylovesthedbacks, asteroid, Jim McLennan, Augdogs, Suns R Us, diamondintherough, Backin'the'Backs, Craig from Az, imstillhungry95, Dallas D'Back Fan, leaflover4ever, UofAZGrad, Azreous, andrewryno, oldspartan, Jdub220, njjohn, NASCARbernet, Frank Squishy, Turambar, Bryn21, Husk, Clefo, 4 Corners Fan, SongBird, JoeCB1991, rfffr, dback4life, Muu, BulldogsNotZags, Stupendous Man, Wailord, Sprankton, and dbacks4life.
While it wasn't the most rec'd comment on the day, this comment by Jim sums up how I view the Giants as of right now:
In the end, the Dbacks not only get a win, but a series win over Giants, increase their lead to seven, and, dare I say it, are nearing the point where they are running away with the divsion. Just as a reminder, since tommorow is Labor Day, the game will 12:10 Arizona Time. Be there, or don't be there. You have complete control over that choice.
No, but seriously. You should be here. Watching the game.