How big a blowout was yesterday's game? Craig Counsell went 2-for-2 with 3 RBIs in the first innings. We came closer to batting around twice than merely batting around in that frame, sending 13 men to the plate and dispatching Padres starter Darrell May to the showers before he could record three outs. It's an encouraging performance, especially against the team who have probably overtaken the Barry-less Giants (perhaps they should now be renamed the Dwarves?) as NL West favourites.
As kindly documented by Otacon in the Gameday thread, the scoring stopped after that opening surge, save Troy Glaus's three-run homer in the sixth, but it was more than enough. Every D'backs position starter got two hits except for Tony Clark at first, with Glaus's 5 RBIs taking him to 22 for spring, the best in the majors this year. [Blah... spring stats... blah... meaningless. Yes, I know, but let's enjoy it while we can, shall we?] Even the much-maligned Russ Ortiz produced his best start, allowing only four hits and one run over six innings, with perfect innings from the previously unimpressive Choate and [you might want to sit down for this one] Oscar Villarreal, though Bruney did allow a run in the ninth.
There were a couple of sharp rumbles of metaphorical thunder during the game, albeit ones that may have made at least one of Bob Melvin's decisions easier for him. Catcher Chris Snyder dislocated the tip of his left thumb (on, with appropriate irony, a foul tip). Precisely whether this is a major issue will be known on Monday when he meets with the team's hand specialist, Dr. Don Sheridan. [Yes: we have a hand specialist. Learning that raised an eyebrow here, but I guess he's 'armless. ;-)]
At least the injury happened before Monday, when we need to work out whether or not we're going to retain Kelly Stinnett. I suspect this will now affirm the decision to make Hill the starter, leave Stinnett as backup and keep Snyder in Tucson while he "recuperates". Also, Jose Valverde seems all but certain to start the season on the disabled list, because of a strained tendon - he is a week, perhaps ten days from even throwing off a mound. If he does get DL'd, this will open up a bullpen spot, most likely for Brian Bruney.
Posted a set of four polls over on the diary side (that's to the right and - at the moment - down a bit!), to run up until Opening Day. Which starter will get most wins? Which reliever will have the best ERA? And which player will get most homers and have the best batting average? You are welcome to vote in these, and feel free to add your comments explaining why you think so.