Preview: Game #153, Diamondbacks @ Rockies

Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

I'd like to thank the Dodgers for introducing me to a new experience: being genuinely pleased to face Colorado.

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Randall Delgado
RHP, 5-6, 3.98
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Jhoulys Chacin
RHP, 13-9, 3.22

Diamondbacks line-up

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

After the lumpy and indigestible mutton vindaloo which was the Dodgers series, playing the Rockies promises to be a lemon sorbet of palate-cleansing freshness. S'funny that, just last weekend, it felt like we'd be fed up to be seeing Colorado yet again - but, here we are, frankly relieved to be here for a nice, low-stress series against opponents who haven't needlessly irritated us for about six years. [Yeah, remember when it looked like the D-backs/Rockies rivalry would dominate the NL West for a while? Happy days...] Besides, it'll give the maintenance staff at Chase time to drain the pool and give it a really good acid wash.

Not quite sure how this happened, but I suspect that lining up the rotation so that Delgado pitches at Coors Field might be the baseball equivalent of crossing Home-Run Derby with Russian roulette. Delgado's HR rate of 1.78 per nine innings is the highest of any pitcher in the National League with 100 IP. And it isn't even remotely close: the #2 is the Brewers' Marco Estrada, who sits all the way down at 1.50. [Oddly, former Diamondbacks occupy spots three through five: Dan Haren, Ian Kennedy and Jason Marquis. Emphasis on "former", I suspect.] I'm kinda surprised the starting line-up today didn't include five outfielders.

It does, however, include Wil Nieves, who is getting his first start since September 7. The month hasn't been kind to him: we're into the final third and he has still to record his first hit, having had 14 at-bats already. If that isn't taken care of today, might be time to start looking into the last time a Diamondbacks had 20+ AB for a calendar month without a hit. Can't have happened that often, is my first thought. But, that said, getting a start in Coors is certainly more helpful than it could be.

It'll be the fourth time we've seen Chacin this season, and we've done better against him each time. He blanked us for six innings and got the win in April. In May, he gave Colorado a quality start and ended up with a no-decision. But when we saw him last Sunday, he lasted only four innings and was charged with six runs (four earned) on seven hits and three walks. Which tells me that either he's going to be really bad this time, or he's going to cycle back to the beginning, and blank us for six more innings. So, whatever happens: you read it here first.

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