I came up with various graphical options to welcome new Australian outfielder Trent Oeltjen, who is making his major-league debut today - mostly with varying degrees of snark. Kylie Minogue? A can of Fosters? Peter Jackson? [Yeah, I know. That's the point, y'see. Mistaking Aussies and Zealanders is like calling a Canadian an American, or me English]. Maybe the cricketing Ashes trophy, currently being competed for in England, with the home team ahead 1-0? In the end, I turned to the almighty oracle Google Images, and vowed to use whatever was the first image it picked. Worked out quite nicely, really. Could have been a platypus up a gum tree or something.
Appropriately, he gets the start behind our own Mad Max, Mr. Scherzer, as we try to win our fourth road-game in a row, and sweep the Pirates out of town. We should enjoy these Scherzer starts while we can, because I've a feeling there may not be many more this season, due to inning limits. He had 133 IP last season - 56 in the majors, 53 in the minors and 24 in the Fall League - and general wisdom has young pitchers ramping that up by no more than about thirty innings per year.
So bearing that in mind, he'd be held off at about 160 innings, 48.2 more than currently - the team may err on the side of caution, given that Scherzer throws more pitches per inning than most [At 4.17 pitches/PA, he's ranked second among all 131 qualifying ML pitchers - trailing only Clayton Kershaw's 4.25] Maybe this is another reason why we signed Daniel Cabrera? In some ways, it's a good thing we're not seriously involved in a playoff race. It'd suck to have to replace someone like Max with a #7 starter down the stretch, just as things reach their climax.
He did an excellent job last time Scherzer faced the Pirates, shutting them out for seven innings at Chase on July 26, a game where we scored in each of the first four innings, crusing to a 9-0 victory as we pounded out 14 hits. That wasn't admittedly against Hart, who has never faced the Diamondbacks. A few players did see him last year, when he was a Cubs reliever, and we tattoed him for four runs in two-third of an inning, albeit with the help of an error. However, as a starter, he's been pretty good, not allowing more than three runs in any of his four outings, going five or six innings each time. Here's to the Diamondbacks ending that streak.
- Stephen Drew SS
- Alex Romero RF
- Gerardo Parra CF
- Mark Reynolds 3B
- Miguel Montero C
- Chad Tracy 1B
- Trent Oeltjen LF
- Augie Ojeda 2B
- Max Scherzer P
The loss of Justin Upton - and also Ryan Roberts, whose wife is having a baby - leads to some shaking of the line-up. Surprised to see Parra in the three-spot, but I guess it makes kinda sense. And I expect to hear back-to-back chants towards the bottom of the order: Aussie!/Augie!, Aussie!/Augie!, Aussie!/Augie! - Oi! Oi! Oi!