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Gameday Thread, #3: 4/3 vs. Rockies

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Joe Saunders
LHP, 0-0, N/A

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Jhoulys Chacin
RHP, 0-0, N/A

[Currently in weather delay]

Rubber game of the series, and despite the lack of clutch hitting yesterday, we go into the finale with a chance to take the opening set, on the road, which would be more than satisfactory [frankly, we reached "more than satisfactory" when Putz nailed the save on Opening Day]. This afternoon sees our sole left-handed starter (for now) take the mound. He didn't exactly have a great spring, but Kirk Gibson feels 'great' about starting pitcher Joe Saunders. So that's nice. [Worth a read for more snark between Gibson and the media. He certainly seems a bit more...well, fiery than the last couple of managers]

Line-up in the usual place.

  1. Willie Bloomquist SS
  2. Kelly Johnson 2B
  3. Justin Upton RF
  4. Russell Branyan 1B
  5. Chris Young CF
  6. Miguel Montero C
  7. Ryan Roberts 3B
  8. Gerardo Parra LF
  9. Joe Saunders LHP

Branyan replaces Nady at first, but Mora replaces Roberts back at third. The revised lineup posted at about 11:10am has Roberts replacing Melvin Mora who is ailing today (illness, not injury). Still no sign of Henry Blanco, who has yet to smell even a pinch-hit or inning as defensive replacement - even though this is a day game after a night one. However, I wouldn't be surprised to see him tomorrow, which will be a day game after a flight to Chicago. Branyan hit clean-up, between Upton and Young, and I quite like that look of the heart of our order.

Saunders faced the Rockies three times last season, and had two good starts (three ER in 15 innings) and one awful one (seven runs in 2.1 innings) - the latter was the only time in his career he has pitched in Coors, so let's hope for better this afternoon. We saw Chacin four times last year: he was 2-1 with a 1.93 ERA, so did pretty well. Surprisingly though, Chris Young is the only one of today's starters with ten at-bats against him. Upton and Parra are a combined 0-for-14, so will be looking to do better.

My first chance to watch the team in the regular season, so looking forward to that. So far, our pitching has been grand - a 2.84 ERA over the first couple of games is nothing to sneeze about in Coors, and the offense has been mostly decent too. If they can keep this up the rest of the way, we should be okay, but if you can't have a decent ERA when only your #1 and #2 have pitched... See you in the comments, and IHSB will be back with his first recap of the season after the game.

Updated 11:30am: Well, according to our beloved Dbacks beat writers on Twitter, as well as the MLB text alert I just got, this game is already under a weather delay. There is no scheduled time for first pitch, and the game may not be played at all today. Sorry Jim, looks like you may have to wait another day before seeing a Dbacks game!