Record: 5-3. Change on last season: +3
Yesterday's optimism eventually proved justified, though the Diamondbacks' bats did take their own time about it. Again, after taking the lead in the first, the offense seemed to head for the showers early, not scoring again until the eighth. The closest we came was Chad Tracy getting thrown out at home in the fifth, until RBI hits by Clark, Clayton and Gonzo turned a 2-1 deficit into our third straight win.
Gonzo had two RBIs, while Royce Clayton had three of our nine hits. The phrase "about time too" comes to mind, though he was also picked off first in the opening innings. Glaus's streak of home run games ended at four, but eight games into the season, he has still to hit a single; so far, he's had three doubles, a triple and four home runs.
Webb pitched eight innings, just what we needed to give our beleagured bullpen something of a rest. It helped that the Rockies seemed keen to get away for the night - Webb needed only 12 pitches to get through the first two innings, and only 94 for eight. [Mind you, we showed no patience either, not drawing a single walk] Lyon came on in the ninth, and took 9 pitches, with the help of the Rockies' third double play. He notched his fourth save of the season, and extends the bullpen's unscored upon streak to seven innings.
Thanks to Otacon, azpenguin, William K, IndyDBack and Daniel for their comments on the game. As mentioned by the last named, been tossing around dates for a possible joint Giants-D'backs blog-commenting session with Orange and Black Baseball. Ruled out the 20th/21st April, but we play them again 3rd/4th May, though the latter game may not be televised, which would make it harder to blog [much though I love radio baseball, you can't offer any first-hand observations!]
On the injury front, Jose Valverde is progressing ahead of schedule and could be back in the bullpen in a couple of weeks, while another MRI, on Greg Aquino's elbow [one of these days, I expect to hear a radio ad from "the official MRI supplier to your Arizona Diamondbacks"] revealed no major damage. No-one seems to know when or if he'll be back, and surgery may remain an option - it's the same kind undergone by Lyon and Villarreal, though the results on those two could hardly have been more different.
Speaking of Oscar, looks like he won't need surgery for his slightly-torn rotator cuff, but we still won't be seeing him for some time. Jose Cruz missed his third game in a row, and a precautionary MRI revealed an irritated nerve in his lower back; McCracken has been replacing him, while poor Luis Terrero has only one at-bat this season. Admitted Melvin, "Terrero's the one guy that's kind of fallen through the cracks here right now." However, he'll probably get the start today against Rockies left-hander Francis.
Robby Hammock inked his minor-league contract, though he's still rehabbing from his labrum surgery, and is some way off: "we hope by June he's ready to do baseball things," said Joe Garagiola Jr, clearly showing an expert grasp of game terminology. ;-) We also signed veteran pitcher Darren Oliver to a similar deal; he'll be the one in Tucson looking nervously around on the mound, hoping no more swarms of bees are attracted to his hair conditioner. Probably sensible to have coverage, given the current crop of injuries.