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Padres 8, Diamondbacks 7 - Unlucky # 13

Hello everyone, DbacksSkins here. Sorry it has taken me so long to get this up; internet's been very wacky lately. (Damned AT&T!) Anyway, here we go:

Record: 17-7. Pace: 115-47. Change on last season: +4

Quote: "I didn't really expect to hit one there." – Tadahito Iguchi, through a translator.

Do you KNOW how tough a team your 2008 Arizona Diamondbacks are?? It takes them 13 innings, and injuries to their starting pitcher and right fielder, to make them lose. They can give up 7 runs and STILL force the other team into extra frames. I must admit, of course, that it stings a little bit to go that long and lose, but hey, that's baseball, and as fans, this is the life we have chosen.

Micah Pwnings, from the mound, was NOT his usual 2008 dominant self, finishing with a line of 5IP, 5H, 5R, 5ER, 3BB, 5K, 1HR, boosting his ERA to 3.48. It was really the walks that ultimately did him in, although giving up a homerun to Owings' nemesis Brian Giles didn't help. Combined with Danny Haren getting lit up by the Dodgers in LA, two of our three top guys suffered their first rough start during this last cycle of the rotation. I might be slightly worried, except that Randy Johnson's game against the Padres on friday looked more like 2002 Randy Johnson than 2007 Randy Johnson. Even after giving up the 8 earned runs yesterday, the Dbacks STILL lead the majors with a 3.04 ERA, and the 3-headed Webb/Haren/Owings monster still has a combined 2.74 ERA.

Chris Young led off the game with a double, but couldn't score, after a strikeout, groundout, and popout. Normally, when recapping a loss, I'd say this was an ominous sign; except that the Dbacks still ended up scoring 7 runs. Micah pitched around a 2 out single by Adrian Gonzalez in the bottom of the inning, and after a 1-2-3 top of the 2nd, the wheels first began to come off. San Diego scored 4 runs on a walk, wild pitch, groundout, walk, strikeout, single, walk, single, single, HBP, and then finally a popout. Last year, I would have just given up on the game with a 4-0 deficit, but 2008 is a whole new season.

In the top of the very next inning, the Dbacks showed why 4 runs down ain't no thang. Micah had a single just before Chris Young drove the ball out of the park on a monster (by PetCo standards) home run. It was his 6th of the year, and the single was the first of three hits by Micah on the day. I really think I'd rather have Micah's pitching be on target than his hitting, but it's nice to know that if one side isn't up to snuff, he can compensate by using the other side. (See "Home Runs; Games with two")

The fourth inning saw Mark Reynolds reach on an error and collect his 2nd stolen base of the year, but also saw Brian Giles, who absolutely OWNs Pwnings for some reason, smack a solo shot. The top of the fifth saw the Dbacks grab two more runs to pull within 5-4; Montero flied out, Micah singled again, Justin Germano uncorked a wild pitch, CY K'd, Germano uncorked yet ANOTHER wild pitch, Byrnes walked, and then O-Dawg cleared the bases with a triple.

The game went similarly back and forth as the Dbacks scored 2 in the 6th to take a 6-5 lead and chase Germano, then the Pads scored 2 off Brandon Medders in the bottom of the inning to retake the lead; the Dbacks then tied up the game at 7 on a Byrnes double, O-Dawg sacrifice, and CoJack single. In the 6th, Owings smacked an RBI double to score Upton, but pulled up gimpy as soon as he hit the back, leading to Robby Hammock pinch running for him. Owings finished up 3-3 with a double, 2 runs scored, and an RBI. In the bottom of the 7th, Jupton grounded out and quickly grasped his torso after getting called out. Upton was replaced by Jeff Salazar; the word is that Micah has a slight ankle sprain and Upton just had a cramp.

Chad Qualls pitched two 1-2-3 innings, and Doug Slaten pitched around a walk for a scoreless inning, but Glendon Rusch was just as sharp for the Padres. Yusmeiro Petit took over in the bottom of the 11th, and got out 7 straight Padres before -- GASP!! -- allowing Tadahito Iguchi's walkoff HR, his first homer of the year, in the bottom of the 13th. Pretty tough to blame Petit; he made a mistake on one pitch but looked pretty good before that.

[Click to enlarge, in new window]
Master of his domain: Chad Qualls, +25.1%

Honorary Goodness: Micah Owings, (hitting) +21.9%
God-Emperor of suck: Micah Owings, (pitching) -22.0% 

So, as we're used to seeing, Micah gets big ups for hitting, and... as we're not used to seeing this year, not so good marks for pitching.

Gameday Thread was very active, as it usually is against the GLB team; present were DbacksSkins, kishi, TwinnerA, IndyDBack, foulpole, peachy rex, dahlian, seton hall snake pit, mrssoco, soco, azshadowwalker, hotclaws, 4 Corners Fan, snakecharmer, Wimb, Azreous, and SongBird. An overflow thread was necessary again. That's becoming a pretty common sight this year.