The La Russa Heartbreakometer
A little bit of weirdness for this preview, which is actually being written on the Saturday night, since I've got to be out and about on Sunday morning before line-ups are announced, so you'll have noticed their absence above. I may be back before first pitch. I may not. But Clefo will be bringing you the regularly scheduled Gameday Thread, as we go for a road sweep of the Giants. We have already won six consecutive games at AT&T Park, and the last three of those have been shutouts. Can Hellickson keep it going? Let's be honest, odds against, though it's not impossible. The main problem seems to be, that the date is not July 26th.
I mention this because the last time Hellickson was involved in a team shutout was July 26th, 2015, when he tossed six innings and we beat the Brewers 3-0. The time before that was July 26th, 2014, when he was with the Rays - they beat the Red Sox, also by a 3-0 score, though Hellickson lasted only 4.2 innings. So, if today was July 26th, 2016, I'd be prepared to bet on Jeremy - and double that up on a 3-0 Diamondbacks victory. Instead, we have the much less certain fate of a pitcher who came back off the DL and lasted exactly one inning in his return to the rotation, allowing three hits, two walks and five runs as six of nine batters faced reached base. Doesn't exactly inspire confidence.
I'll be happy simply if we get the sweep. It'll be the third time we've faced Hudson this year, and the previous two games have been split. We raked him for five runs over five innings at AT&T Park in April, but lost at Chase earlier this month, as he allowed one run over six innings; maybe we need to fear his bat, since he homered in that contest. Giants' pitchers have nine home-runs this season; Diamondbacks' pitchers don't even have an extra-base hit. The 2013 Pirates are the only other team in recorded baseball history to have any position get 100+ AB in a season, and fail to record an extra-base hit: their pitchers did it too. Time is running out for the D-backs. No pressure, Jeremy...