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Diamondbacks 10, Mets 4: Augie! Augie! Augie!

Record: 21-9. Pace: 113-49. Change on last season: +5.

The final score makes this one look a lot more convincing than it was. Yes, Webb got his seventh win of the year. Sure, we out hit the Mets 15-6 and had a total of 23 baserunners. But, with three outs to get, this was only a one-run game and it looked like we would be relying on Brandon Lyon for a tense final inning. Then, the Mets' Duaner Sanchez imploded, retiring only one of the six hitters he faced and also uncorking a run-scoring wild pitch. By the time the innings finally ended, with Micah Owings striking out as a pinch-hitter, victory was no longer in any significant doubt, with Win Probability having gone from 86.5% to 99.7%.

All hail Augie Ojeda, replacing the injured Hudson, who joined an elite group: Diamondbacks with 6+ RBI during a game. There are now only ten names on that list - Steve Finley did it twice in 1999 - many not the ones you'd expect. Only two [Finley and Gonzo] appear in the franchise top ten RBI list: present instead are Micah Owings, Orlando Hudson, Damion Easley [starting, by coincidence, for the Mets today], Shea Hillenbrand, Carlos Baerga, Chad Moeller and Erubiel Durazo. Ojeda singled in two runs during the second, doubled down the right-field line to add two more in the fifth, and repeated the medicine as part of the five-run ninth. Given he'd never driven in more than three before - and that all the way back in 2001 - this was truly a day he'll remember.

He's not the only Diamondbacks to have a career game, though the other one has much less of a career - thus far, at least. With three hits and two walks, and at age 20 years and 252 days, Justin Upton became the youngest player to reach base safely five times in a game since Ken Griffey (20 years, 173 days) on May 13th, 1990. The one before that was Alan Tramell (20, 136) on July 7th 1978. Young, Drew, Jackson and Snyder all joined Upton and Ojeda with multiple hits: CY and CoJack also added walks, as we reached double-figures in runs for the first time in exactly two weeks.

This was a major relief since, despite being voted NL Pitcher of the Month for April (well, duh...), Brandon Webb did not have his best stuff, missing his spots and falling behind hitters much more often than he has cruising to a 6-0 record and an ERA below two. That said, he only really made one mistake he couldn't correct: that was a 1-1 pitch to Carlos Delgado with two outs in the sixth, which was promptly dispatched into the right-field corner for a three-run homer. All of a sudden, what had been looking a fairly comfortable 5-1 lead, suddenly became a great deal more nerve-wracking. Webb ended the day after that inning, having allowed four runs on only five hits and two walks.

The A-Bullpen were, however in full effect. Qualls extended his streak of innings without an earned run to 16.2 innings, and is now within sight of the franchise record for a reliever. That stands at 21 innings - from another surprising source, journeyman bullpen arm Willie Banks, over 16 games between June 25 and August 23 1998, after coming over from the Yankees. Tony Peña was perhaps the most impressive of the trio, as he mowed down the heart of the Mets 1-2-3, first taking Church to school [if you see what I mean...], then retiring Wright and Beltran. Lyon allowed a single to Easley, but that was it, and we evened up the series, in advance of what should be a great game tomorrow.

It wasn't all sunshine and lollipops today. Our defense was once agaib flaky, with errors being charged to Drew and Webb - the former letting a ground-ball under his glove, the latter apparently trying to throw a high chopper by Easley, before he'd actually caught it. Byrnes and Reynolds struggled again: before they came to bat in that eighth inning [Eric singled and Mark walked], they were a combined 0-for-8 with nine men left on base. Special K's average is now down to .226, and he was overtaken by both Young [.244] and Snyder [.227] today.

[Click to open, in new window]
Master of his domain: Augie Ojeda, +21.1%
Honorary mention: Justin Upton, +14.0%
God-emperor of suck: Mark Reynolds, -10.8%

After last night, it was definitely good to come out on the winning end of this one, and the emphatic margin will hopefully give us some momentum going into tomorrow [I'm not sure if there is such a thing or if it's one of those unproven myths like two-out runs being worse to give up]. I kinda thought we'd have more people in the thread today - for the second consecutive game, we didn't need an overflow thread. Still, thanks to those present: Turambar, Jim McLennan, 4 Corners Fan, foulpole, luckycc, Muu, hotclaws, dahlian, Snakebitten, DiamondbacksWIn, soco, mrssoco, kishi, Azreous, TwinnerA, snakecharmer and njjohn.

The victory was particularly crucial as the Giants and Padres have both won: the Dodgers and Rockies are in another slugfest at Coors [17 runs last night, 15 already this evening and we're only in the sixth], but LA look to have the edge there. And with that, we're thinking about heading off to see Iron Man tonight. We'll let you know if Mark Reynolds has a cameo role... :-)