Record: 61-75. Change on last year: +19
Hang on! Weren't we like, y'know, challenging for the pennant on Wednesday morning? And now we're fourth in our division? We may be the most-improved team in the majors, but we still have the third-worst record in the National League. How did this happen? Oh, I forgot: we suck. It's all the crazee run-differential in April's fault. We'd have got away with it, if it hadn't been for that. Oh, and those meddling kids.
Finally, as The Rock would say, the Diamondbacks have come back to mediocrity - or, at least, to a league position that accurately reflects their won-loss record. Teams that are double-digits below .500 shouldn't be in second place. And now we aren't. We're as close to the Rockies as the Padres. Dayn Perry, are you happy now? [Mind you, in the Pythagorean standings - those expected given our run differential - we're actually worse than Colorado, and have still over-achieved more than any other team in the majors]
Yesterday's game saw the Giants remain perfect against us this year when Schmidt starts - they've won all five games. At first, it looked kinda promising, as we took a 1-0 lead with one out in the second, on a couple of doubles by Clark and Glaus. However, that would be it as far as D'back hitting went until the seventh inning, by which point, the Giants had a 6-1 lead.
Webb was fine through the first five innings - the game was a tie going into the sixth - but a combination of good and lucky hitting (the tying run scored when Durham pinged a single off Webb's knee) doomed our starter. Durham was the cause of more pain in the sixth with a three-run homer, and Vizquel added two more in the seventh to put this away.
Two hits for Green, and a two-run pinch-hit double by Cintron are about the only offensive performances of note. After Webb departed, Groom, Medders and Worrell tidied up, allowing one walk over the last 2.2 innings, albeit in a lost cause. The top of our order continues to fail, Counsell, Clayton and Gonzalez going 0-for-10. Counsell in particular looks shot.
A crowd below 20,000 at BOB, which for a Friday night game against the Giants, is dismal. Thanks to Devin, azdb7 and tourist for stopping by, though here no-one seemed particularly in the mood to hang around either. This includes myself, who got landed with some new tasks at work, which couldn't be wriggled out of. One of the perils of being - by far! - the oldest guy on the team. They think you're "responsible" and "mature". Hah! Little do they know... ;-)
No surprises in the first batch of September callups. Oscar Villarreal got activated off the 60-day DL, while Koyie Hill, Brian Bruney, Andy Green all came up from Tucson - a spot was opened up on the 40-man roster for the last-named, by placing Scott Hairston on the 60-day DL.
The question is, how much playing time are they going to get? This applies to Green in particular - we have a fairly good idea of the others' potential. When will Melvin admit the season is done, and begin building for 2006?
According to today's Banana, "Melvin indicated that Green, an infielder who can play second, third and shortstop, as well as the corner outfield positions, could get a start soon." However, in the Tribune, "Melvin said Green is unlikely to get any starts until the Diamondbacks playoff chances are a bit more certain." I'd laugh, if I wasn't busy weeping. I mean, Green only won the Pacific Coast League MVP on Tuesday.
Also in the Banana, Bob McManaman makes the very good point that it'd be nice if Green could get a start today or tomorrow, in front of the home crowd, rather than at Pittsburgh or Colorado, where no-one will give a damn. It seems the least Green deserves after his monster season - unfortunately, every game he doesn't play in, seems like another page written of a 2006 contract for Royce Clayton.