- , SS
- Paul Goldschmidt, 1B
- Eric Chavez, 3B
- Cody Ross, LF
- Miguel Montero, C
- Jason Kubel, DH
- A.J. Pollock, CF
- Cliff Pennington, 2B
+ Brandon McCarthy, P
Deep in the heart of Texas! [a sentence I can't write without thinking of Pee-Wee's Big Adventure]. It's where the D-backs go, and it will be the 28th time we've played the Rangers in franchise history, which will actually be the most of any American League club. The overall record hasn't been good: even after the Memorial Day sweep, Arizona are still only 10-17 against them, with our only previous series victory coming all the way back in June 1998. This begins a long stretch for the Diamondbacks: 15 games in 15 days, with only three of those at home, and nine against teams above .500. If we're still in first by the next off-day on June 13, I'll be more than satisfied.
McCarthy starts for the Diamondbacks, and is attempting to go through the whole month of May without tasting defeat. That would be "something of an improvement", to say the least, considering he went through the whole month of April without enjoying a victory. So far in his five May starts, McCarthy is 2-0 with a 1.98 ERA, and a K:BB ratio of 21:6 in 36.1 innings. He has been even better than that over his last three appearances, going 2-0 with an 0.38 ERA, having allowed precisely one run over those 24 innings. Admittedly, the BABIP of .217 has been helpful, especially considering a line-drive rate of 23%, but it's about time he enjoyed a bit of good luck.
Grimm is going to be an almost unknown quantity for the Diamondbacks, with a grand total of two PAs against him, across the entire roster - Cliff Pennington is responsible for both: he is 0-for-2. Kubel gets the start at DH, and Martin Prado sits out his second game in a row: my instinct is this is likely due to fouling the ball of his knee-cap in the opener of the double-header, but I'm sitting on this, waiting for an update Jody Jackson has promised us on Prado. [Well, not sign of that as yet, but Nick P says Prado should be back in there tomorrow.]
Elsewhere, Daniel Hudson had his first appearance against live batters today, playing in extended spring training. He worked six innings and threw 74 pitches, allowing seven hits and a walk, with three K's. Hudson joked on Twitter, "that means I must have had pretty good stuff ", but added, "Seriously though the arm felt great today!" and Nick Piecoro reports (second-hand) that Hudson was up to 95 mph, which is pretty decent. We've got extended video of his day, which we'll post later, but the D-backs provided it in 29 separate files, so that'll have to wait for me to get home tonight, and break out AVIDemux to stitch it all back together.
Can we make it three in a row over the Rangers? That'd be cool.