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SnakeBytes 6/20: Yovani Dominates

Yovani Gallardo improved to 8-0 against the D-backs all-time as the D-backs lost 4-1 in the series finale Thursday. Tim Lincecum will start the opener tonight against the D-backs in the opening game of a 3-game set.

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I won't have you bad mouth the US Soccer team any longer!
I won't have you bad mouth the US Soccer team any longer!
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports


He can spot the ball wherever he wants to. He's a good athlete. … We've had him on the ropes several times, but some way he seems to wiggle out of it. Today, he just kind of dominated us.

Kirk Gibson describes Yovani Gallardo after yesterday's defeat

Daily D-backs

Gallardo stifles D-backs |
The Brewers right-hander came into Thursday's game with a 7-0 record and a 1.80 ERA against the D-backs over career 11 starts, including two in the postseason. He was even better than that on Thursday. Gallardo gave up only one run in seven innings of work in a 4-1 victory at Chase Field, clinching the four-game set for the Brewers.

Diamondbacks escape eighth on Kirk Gibson's challenge win |
Gibson challenged the call and, after a review of 28 seconds, the call was overturned. While Gomez was the final out of the inning, Gennett had crossed home plate prior to the tag on Gomez, so his run counted.

Campana optioned to Reno day after walk-off hit |
Game-winning hit one day, headed to Triple-A the next. Baseball can be a cruel game. D-backs outfielder Tony Campana was optioned to Reno on Thursday less than 12 hours after his single up the middle allowed Arizona to walk off the Brewers.

Kirk Gibson deserves to stay on as Diamondbacks manager |
Yes, they're still in last place in the National League West. Yes, they likely won't hit the .500 mark anytime this season. But the progress Arizona has made the past six weeks should be enough to convince Chief Baseball Officer Tony La Russa that Gibson deserves to manage the team in 2015.

Diamondbacks' Miguel Montero bounces back |
It took all of the spring to get back to normal, because Montero wasn't trying to rediscover his identity as a ballplayer only for his teammates. He was doing it for himself, too. "I love the game," Montero said. "I love the results, and I believe so much in myself, and I'm so secure in myself that I know what I'm capable of doing and what I'm not. I know that last year was not me, and I want to prove to myself that I'm better than that."

Lincecum to face Goldschmidt in opener |
Tim Lincecum facing Paul Goldschmidt isn't exactly what the doctor ordered for the scuffling Giants, who are mired in their worst stretch of the season, having lost five consecutive games and eight of their last nine. But that matchup is the reality facing the Giants on Friday night. Goldschmidt has utterly dominated Lincecum, going 13-for-24 with seven homers and 17 RBIs lifetime against the two-time Cy Young winner.

Around the MLB

Clayton Kershaw derping during his no-hitter

San Diego Padres pay tribute to Tony Gwynn | Imgur

Joyce bats ball into machine |
During batting practice, Matt Joyce hits a ball back into the pitching machine, causing it to fire a strike before he is ready.

David Wright might not like the home run sculpture |
David Wright lifts a solo home run to center field to open the scoring and give the Mets an early 1-0 lead.

Aroldis Chapman’s Cruel Experiment | FanGraphs Baseball
Back in spring training, Chapman was throwing a lot of a changeup. Then he got hurt, badly hurt, horrifyingly hurt, then he got better and came back. Since coming back, Chapman has thrown a lot of a changeup, that he hasn’t thrown before. When he was a starter, he had a changeup in his repertoire. When he shifted to relief, it basically disappeared, and if he ever threw a change, he didn’t do so more than a handful of times. The changeup, now, is just part of his arsenal, and it hovers around 90 miles per hour. Which means Aroldis Chapman, an all-time dominant reliever, has increased his repertoire by 50%. And so far this season, he’s struck out 54% of the batters he’s faced.

The Diamondbacks’ Grit vs. Win Expectancy | FanGraphs Baseball
It’s fairly safe to say that Arizona manager Kirk Gibson doesn’t care for Ryan Braun that much. Braun torched Gibson’s Diamondbacks in the 2011 LCS, just before Braun was found to have been taking some form of PEDs. The suspension, repeal fiasco, and Braun’s name coming up in the Biogenesis scandal never sat right with Gibson and he’s been a vocal critic ever since.

A Hypothetical Starting XI Composed Entirely of Major Leaguers | NotGraphs Baseball
As was made mostly clear by way of their 2-1 defeat of Ghana, what the US national team makes up for with pluck and want-to, it probably lacks in terms of overwhelming skill so far as the world’s game is concered. This isn’t entirely surprising, of course: not only is soccer in its infancy, relatively speaking, within the States, but there are also multiple other sports which tend to draw potentially transcendant talent in other directions.