Preview: Game #126, Diamondbacks @ Reds

Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

Trevor Cahill takes the mound for Arizona today - can he do any better than Brandon McCarthy yesterday (above)? Be hard pushed for it to go worse, admittedly...

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Trevor Cahill
RHP, 4-10, 4.78
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Mat Latos
RHP, 12-4, 3.02

Diamondbacks line-up

  1. Adam Eaton, LF
  2. Martin Prado, 3B
  3. Paul Goldschmidt, 1B
  4. Aaron Hill, 2B
  5. Gerardo Parra, RF
  6. Wil Nieves, C
  7. A.J. Pollock, CF
  8. Didi Gregorius, SS
  9. Trevor Cahill, P

Line-up above is approximate. Okay: actually, it's the same one as yesterday, with the pitcher changed - hey, we're facing right-handers two days in a row, so it's probably not far from the truth. The need for this is because I still intend to be giving it big Z's at the time when any self-respecting "preview" will appear, for what I'm pretty sure is the earliest start time of the season. Even by the standards of day games on the East coast, it's still pretty early: it's also going to be on the MLB Network, though if it's like today's, we may end up knocking off an episode of Game of Thrones along with breakfast instead. There's an idea: recast GoT, based on the National League West. Discuss...

This could conceivably be over before I get into work, which would be kinda weird. And by :"this", I mean the game, though a defeat would, to all intents and purposes, probably mean the same for our 2013 campaign. Seven back with 36 games left, and no more head-to-head contests against the Reds, is not a place I want to be. There was some discussion in the Gameday Thread over the losing of interest. After further thought, I don't think what I've lost is actual interest as such. It's more that I have ceased to be emotionally invested, to any significant degree, in the outcome of games. Put bluntly, I don't "care" anywhere near as much as I did in June, say. And I'm cool with that.

So I have a carefree pessimism about this morning's encounter, which sees us taking on a player who apparently got his name out of the same baby book that gave us Wil Nieves, Wad Miley and Heat Bell. Latos currently owns a streak of six consecutive games allowing two earned runs or less, with a 1.54 ERA over that time. Conversely, Cahill's last quality start for the Diamondbacks was on May 27 - y'know, back when I still gave a damn. [And if proof is needed that this isn't our year, I just noticed that Ian Kennedy four-hit the Pirates over seven shutout innings in San Diego last night. He has as many wins this month for them, as he had over his last 20 starts for us...]

But, I have to say, I was impressed with the way the team didn't give up and phone it in after falling 8-0 down yesterday, but came back to put the tying run on third in the eighth inning. Even if the end result merited a "Well done" rather than any more tangible reward, it's the kind of spirit which makes defeat less painful. Should this game indeed mark the end of realistic hope, it'll be comebacks like yesterday which will be the source of excitement for the next month or so.

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