The wind blowing out at Wrigley Field looked like it actually might help the Diamondbacks today. In the first inning, both Gerardo Parra and Paul Goldschmidt hit fly balls that were close to going out. Goldschmidt's would have been a double if not for a leaping catch into the ivy by former Diamondback great Scott Hairston. (More about Hairston later.) If the Diamodbacks could find some power, maybe a few would get out of the park.
Well, a few did get out of the park, but they were all hit by Chicago Cubs. Wade Miley hit the first batter he faced, and the second reached on an infield hit. A beautiful double-play turned by Cliff Pennington and Didi Gregorius then made it seem like Miley might get out of the inning unscathed, but the next batter was Alfonso Soriano. And for some reason, he tends to hit very, very well against Arizona, and ZM even warned us about him in this morning's preview. But I don't think Wade read ZM's article, because whatever it was he threw to him, Soriano sent it - with a lot of help from the wind - into the basket right above Parra's head for a two-run home run. (In case you wanted to know, that was Soriano's 18th home run in 145 at-bats against Diamondback pitchers.)
Wade's World was even further off its axis in the third inning. David DeJesus singled to lead off the inning, and advanced to third on a one-out double by Anthony Rizzo. With Soriano at the plate and first base open, the decision was made to walk Soriano and pitch to Hairston. Setting up the force outs seemed like the best idea at the time. But have we mentioned yet that Hairston also seems to hit well against his former team? Well, he does, because he hit a no-doubt grand slam to left field. Suddenly, the two-run deficit became six, and looked much more insurmountable. It got worse two batters later when fellow former Diamondback great Cody Ransom took a 3-1 count fastball and homered to left, too. Now it was 7-0 after just three innings.
After that, Wade became the sacrificial lamb and stayed in the game. He actually did very well in innings four through seven - until he gave up one two-out single in the sixth, he had retired nine Cubs in a row. He easily struck out the pitcher and also had a 1-2-3 seventh inning. Wade's final line was full of 7s: 7 IP, 7 R/ER, 7 K, 2 BB, 3 HR. All of the runs scored by the Cubs came on those three home runs, so except for that "little blip"...
Down 7-0, with Matt Garza pitching surprisingly well for a pitcher who was looking for his first win, there was little the Diamondbacks could do. Miguel Montero singled to lead off the second inning, but was stranded. Cliff Pennington singled in the third, but was erased when Miley GIDP. Parra followed with a two-out bunt single, but Didi lined out.
Garza retired seven Diamondbacks in a row until the pitcher Miley singled to lead off the sixth inning. Parra doubled down the right field line, sending Miley to third. Miley scored on a sacrifice fly by Didi, and Parra scored on a double down the left field line by Montero. With those two runs, the Arizona Diamondbacks remain the only team in the majors this year to not have been shut out.
Hooray for small victories, because that was all there was to the game. The Diamondbacks nearly went 1-2-3 the rest of the game, save for a ninth-inning, two-out single by Martin Prado. But Jason Kubel struck out to end the game, sending the Diamondbacks to their second blowout loss in a row.
Wayne: M Montero, +4.9%
Garth: C Pennington, +3.8%
Rob Lowe: W Miley, -31.4%
As expected with first a day game, second a non-televised game, and third a soon blowout loss, it was a quiet gameday thread. There were 32 of us today, and we posted just over 330 comments. Clefo (who was supposed to be at work?) was your leader, followed by JoeCB and Rockkstarr. All present were: AzRattler, Baseballdad, Britback, Clefo, Diamondhacks, GuruB, Jim McLennan, JoeCB1991, JoelPre, MVPete1982, Muu, Paper Clip, Rockkstarr12, SenSurround, TRTFSHR, The so-called Beautiful, Turambar, Xipooo, azcougs, azshadowwalker, azwebber, benhat, coldblueAZ, cole8865, grimmy01, hotclaws, onedotfive, piratedan7, preston.salisbury, since_98, snakecharmer, and txzona.
Today's game was not televised for Arizona fans, but the game tomorrow afternoon's will be broadcast by Fox at 4:15pm. Be here!