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Game #23 Preview: 5/2, Arizona Diamondbacks @ Los Angeles Dodgers

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Hopefully, this will go better than last night. If only because I'm recapping it, so suppose that means I have to pay attention...

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Jeremy Hellickson
RHP, 1-3, 5.24
Scott Baker
RHP, 0-1, 3.86
Ender Inciarte - LF Joc Pederson - CF
A.J. Pollock - CF Justin Turner - 3B
Paul Goldschmidt - 1B Howie Kendrick - 2B
Mark Trumbo - RF Adrian Gonzalez - 1B
Yasmany Tomas - 3B Scott Van Slyke - LF
Aaron Hill - 2B Andre Ethier - RF
Jordan Pacheco - C Yasmani Grandal - C
Cliff Pennington - SS Enrique Hernandez - SS
Jeremy Hellickson - RHP Scott Baker - RHP

It is, however, a Jeremy Hellickson start, and those have not tended to go very well for the Diamondbacks thus far. Admittedly, that is probably almost as much on the offense as Hellickson, since we have scored more than two runs in support of him just the once, when the Diamondbacks beat the Giants 5-1 in San Francisco. That has very much been the way of the world for Arizona. We are 9-0 when scoring more than four runs, but are 1-12 when scoring four times or fewer. The reverse doesn't quite hold true, as we have four wins when conceding more than four, and also have four losses when holding opponents to four or fewer.

Maybe we should have held back some of those runs scored when we were pitching well: in the four contests where we allowed zero or one run, the Diamondbacks have outscored the opposition by a total of 29-2. This helps explain why were are below .500, despite having outscored the opposition. We've also been involved in as many blowouts as one-run games (seven of each), which is definitely not normal: last year, we had more than half as many again one-run games (53, compared to 34 blowouts). Though I don't mind too much: win or lose, blowouts tend to be a good deal less stressful than victory being snatched from defeat, or vice versa. It's a long season....

Certainly, last night's game didn't exactly get the ol' adrenalin level rising, not after the point at which the Dodgers had scored more runs (five) than Rubby De La Rosa had retired batters (four). The bottom of the order gets a shakeup, with Hill, Pacheco and Pennington coming in for Chris Owings, Tuffy Gosewisch and Nick Ahmed. Through the first 22 games of the season, 160 Diamondbacks in team history have had 40+ PAs. By OPS, the current campaigns for Hill (.446), Gosewisch (.387) and Ahmed (.374) are ranked 158th, 159th and 160th respectively. This is why we go to the bathroom when the bottom half of our order is due up.

Early start tonight, at 6:10pm Arizona time. Bear that in mind!