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Game #54 Preview: 6/5, Arizona Diamondbacks vs. New York Mets

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Jeremy Hellickson looks to even the series against the Mets at Chase, after we dropped the first game. Can he keep up his run of recent quality starts?

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Jon Niese
LHP, 3-5, 4.42
Jeremy Hellickson
RHP, 3-3, 5.08
Curtis Granderson - RF Ender Inciarte - LF
Ruben Tejada - 2B A.J. Pollock - CF
Lucas Duda - 1B Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
Michael Cuddyer - LF Yasmany Tomas - RF
Wilmer Flores - SS Aaron Hill - 3B
Juan Lagares - CF Chris Owings - 2B
Eric Campbell - 3B Welington Castillo - C
Anthony Recker - C Nick Ahmed - SS
Jon Niese - LHP Jeremy Hellickson - RHP

It was nice of the 2010 Arizona bullpen to show up last night, for Throwback Thursday at Chase Field, allowing the opposition to score six runs over the last four innings of the game. Very much a case of The Good (Robbie Ray), the Bad (Nick Ahmed's fluff leading to a two-run homer, when Huddy should have been out of the inning) and The Ugly - Dominic 'Sergio' Leone's debut, which was among the worst of all time, right up there with Melvin Mora's and Ryan Cook's first games for the franchise. It was easy to see why his numbers were so awful with the Mariners this year, and I suspect a quick return to the minors in his immediate future, rather than A Fistful of Dollars...

This evening, we turn to Hellickson who has been the most consistent of our starting pitchers. Not necessarily best, note; just most consistent. The Game Scores for his starts have all been in a 30-point range, from 29 to 59, which is the smallest among our rotation members with more than two starts. Archie Bradley is at 45 (low of 27, high of 72), Chase Anderson at 48 (26-74), just ahead of Rubby De La Rosa's 49 (27-76), and Josh Collmenter has given us both the best (80) and the worst (1) starts of the season so far, for a spread of 79 points. Anderson has the best average, at 54.5, and is the only one above the league average, of 52.

That said, Hellickson has actually been decent of late, with back-to-back-to-back consecutive quality starts, at a time when Arizona pitchers going six innings has become as rare as hen's teeth. In the last three times round the rotation (which = 16 games, with Ray being added last night), Hellickson has three such outings, which is the same as everyone else in the 13 remaining contests put together (Anderson has two, and Rubby De La Rosa one). They may not have been brilliant or overpowering - only 11 strikeouts in 18.2 innings - but the D-backs won all three games, and the offense provided free tacos in only one of those. I'd settle for the same again tonight.