SnakeBytes 6/24: Hillraiser Returns

For a brief moment, Aaron Hill forgot how to slide. - Christian Petersen

Since Aaron Hill went down with his hand injury, D-backs 2nd basemen have hit for a slash line of .245/.305/.340. In other words, it'll be nice to get some 2-way production from the 4 spot on defense again. This week the D-backs visit the East Coast for a very challenging section with the Nationals, Braves and to wrap it up the Mets. These games will be a great test for this team in determining what they are. Aaron Hill talks his return, Brad Ziegler gloats about knowing the rules, and in a shocking move Gibson names Heath Bell his closer.

Quotables

It’s been a long time. These guys have been doing a great job. It’s tough watching them and seeing how much fun they’re having. It’ll be fun to get back with the guys and get on the road here.

- Aaron Hill

It's my job. It's what I do for a living, so I might as well be familiar with the inner workings. The last thing I want to do is have something happen on the mound while I'm out there that I don't understand and it flusters me a little bit. I'd rather have a real good grasp of things and kind of go with the flow that way.

- Brad Ziegler

Pretty much the way it is, (Bell) is still going to be our closer. It doesn't mean today we might use somebody else, possibly. You want to get him turned around. Is the right thing to do today to put him in the fire, or is it to let him have a day of work, have a day off, work a little more and work him back in in a better situation? That's kind of how we did it before.

- Kirk Gibson

D-backs in the News

D-backs limited by Latos in series-ending loss | MLB.com
The D-backs struck out 13 times over 7 2/3 innings Sunday afternoon against Reds starter Mat Latos, but as has happened so often in 2013, they made things interesting in their final at-bat, putting the tying run on base in a game that was fairly one-sided up to that point.

Gibson: Bell remains D-backs' nominal closer | foxsportsarizona.com
Bell to remain D-backs' nominal closer, but D-backs to consider mixing up duties until Putz returns. The D-backs did not have a lead to preserve in a 4-2 loss to the Reds on Sunday, but before the game, Gibson indicated he had several options.

D-backs' Ziegler a stickler for the rules | foxsportsarizona.com
Ziegler received some national attention earlier this week when he scored a perfect 10 on a test of baseball rules put together by ESPN.com's Jayson Stark. Ziegler was one of 30 or so players who accepted the challenge, and he was the only one who answered all 10 questions correctly. He lit up Twitter for a day or two afterward.

Leaving Arizona Diamondbacks' Gerardo Parra off the All-Star ballot looks foolish now
A friend recently handed A.J. Pollock an All-Star ballot, and the Diamondbacks outfielder scanned it before noticing that one name was conspicuously absent: Gerardo Parra. "I took one look at that thing and shook my head," Pollock said. "That’s not baseball.""

Paul Goldschmidt making up ground on All-Star ballot | dbacks.com
Paul Goldschmidt is making up ground on Joey Votto in the NL All-Star voting at first base, and fans have until July 4 to help him start in the Midsummer Classic.

Former mates Gio, Cahill set to meet in DC | MLB.com
Gonzalez will take the ball Tuesday night in the opener of a three-game series against the D-backs at Nationals Park. The left-hander is looking for only his fourth win of the season and first since May 5 as he squares off against Trevor Cahill, his former A's teammate.

Today in Sports

MLB Power Rankings: Pittsburgh Pirates, Toronto Blue Jays among big movers in Week 12
10. Arizona Diamondbacks (11)
Record: 41-34
Comment: Paul Goldschmidt one home run (19) shy of career-high.

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The Kawasaki victory shuffle

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When you gotta go, you gotta go.

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Robinson Cano does something I've never seen in a double play.

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Every shot from LeBron in Game 7, from the guy that made the Yu Darvish gif.

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