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Diamondbacks 5, Mets 4: Ponies Strike Gold

Paul Goldschmidt and the Diamondbacks walked off on Friday night on a solo shot from the All-Star. I guess I have to mention that the Ponies prevailed again. Grumble.

Norm Hall

Patrick Corbin wasn't necessarily at his best tonight (last night? What's convention for post-midnight references of the previous day?), but he was good enough, which is all you can really ask for from your starter. After cruising through the first, Marlon Byrd led off the second inning with a ball that caromed off of the balcony to the right of the batter's eye, bouncing to the left of centerfielder Adam Eaton. It took a while for a Martin Prado to grab the ball, which prompted the Mets third base coach to send Byrd in the second inning of a 0-0 ballgame. Prado fired to Hill, who zipped it home to nail Byrd at home. Byrd and Tulowitzki were awarded triples on the play.

The Mets put the first run on the board in the fourth on a single/wild pitch/single, but the Dbacks answered quickly in the following inning. Patrick Corbin struck a two-out double. Adam Eaton then added a two-out double of his own to tie the game up at one, which allowed Martin Prado to do the same to take a 2-1 Diamondbacks lead.

Daniel Murphy singled to lead off the sixth, and Marlon Byrd was hit by a pitch to move Murphy over to second (Eric Hinske was suspended on the play). Another Mets RBI single tied the game at two, giving the Diamondbacks yet another chance to be awesome and respond immediately. In the bottom half of the inning, Aaron Hill led off with a single, Cody Ross followed with a double, and Wil Nieves doubled after that to give Arizona a 4-2 lead.

ENTER HEATH BELL. The Mets continued their gritty small-ball approach in the eighth when Heath Bell came in to set-up for Brad Ziegler. Bell had actually been more or less immortal this season in the eighth inning; it's the ninth that makes it a true experience. However, that came to a crashing halt today. Murphy, Byrd, and Satin all singled quickly to begin the inning. Back-to-back groundouts from New York tied the game at four apiece, but also set up John Buck (who, of course, is terrible) to end the inning, stranding the go-ahead run on third.

Let's fast-forward to the ninth, 'cause it's all anyone really cares about (the next two half-innings produced a total of zero baserunners, anyway). Generally, when someone walks off in grand fashion, it's after some long battle at the plate, with two outs, and possibly runners on base. This was a bit more brief, but awesome nonetheless. The Mets, without their closer, sent in Scott Atchinson to pitch the ninth in a tie ballgame. After retiring Prado, Paul Goldschmidt strode to the plate, gathering all of the ethereal equine energy available to him. He crushed the third pitch he saw, an 88 mile an hour slider, over the head of Marlon Byrd in right and into the bleachers to give the Diamondbacks a W in the first game of the series.

Source: FanGraphs

Ezalor, the Keeper of the Light: Paul Goldschmidt, +46.1%
Lyralei, the Windrunner: Adam Eaton, +15.5%
Barathrum, the Spirit Breaker: Heath Bell, -24.7%

If you understood the WPA references above, I want to be your friend. As for the GDT tallies tonight, soco led all 24 commenters with 50 of the 366 comments, with asteroid falling just one short at 49 and Clefo way back at 38. Overall, a slow night. Must have been the ponies. Comment of the Night goes to kishi for the following six-rec comment (context: someone said Corbin should stop walking Buck, Corbin then listened):

It's Pony Day

He may have gotten guidance from a Gallup Poll.

"An unknown person did something that no one else saw, the nature and extent of which is impossible to determine, and the result of which will be lost in the chaotic chain of causation and consequence that is history."
- Welcome To Night Vale

Brandon McCarthy will take the hill tomorrow against one of the headliners of the vaunted 2015 New York Mets staff in Zack Wheeler, who sports an ERA nearing 4 on the season. McCarthy didn't look all that great against Boston, so let's hope it was just some rust that he needed to rid himself of before he kicked into gear. First pitch is at 5:10 MST.