Record: 9-7-3. Change on 2013: +2.
If we went on spring training stats, there'd be little or no doubt about it. Archie Bradley and Wade Miley would be our starters for the series down in Australia. Bradley has 6.1 scoreless innings, and Miley has allowed two earned runs over his 14 innings of work, for a 1.29 ERA. Tonight, he went five frames, holding the Colorado Rockies to four hits and a walk, with five strikeouts. The only apparent trouble was at the end, when he allowed a two-out RBI double in the fifth, followed by a walk and a balk, but recovered to end the inning and his night on a swinging strikeout of Nolan Arenado. If Gibby opted to have him pitch in place of Trevor Cahill, I don't think many fans would mind.
Four out of the five relief pitchers used were just as impressive. We'll get the bad news out of the way first, as Jimmy Sherfly had a nightmare night: Five batters faced, just one retired, as he allowed three hits, hit a batter, threw two wild pitches and was charged with three runs. He had to be bailed out by Brad Ziegler, who got the last two outs in the seventh and vultured the W as a result. There were also scoreless innings of work for Addison Reed, Evan Marshall and Joe Thatcher: Marshall struck out two of the three hitters that he faced, though by that point, it was mostly the Colorado Pebbles who were in the game.
On offense, Aaron Hill got us on the board in the third inning, with his first home-run of the pre-season. A Chris Owings single in the fourth scored Martin Prado to make it 2-0 to Arizona, and after Colorado had made it a one-run game, Miguel Montero also had his first long-ball of the season, a shot which scored himself and Mark Trumbo. Sherfly's meltdown tied things up after seven, but the D-backs took the lead again immediately, Brandon Drury doubling to bring two runs across home plate. Hill had three hits tonight, Owings two, and Montero reached base twice, on a hit and a walk.
All told, a very successful day for the D-backs. There are no more split-squad games before the Australia trip, but tomorrow sees Archie Bradley make his final start before the team leaves after Sunday's contest. He'll be taking on the Mariners in an afternoon game at Salt River Field.