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Game #136 Preview: 9/5, Arizona Diamondbacks @ Chicago Cubs

Let's see if we can avoid giving up 14 runs by the end of the fifth, m'kay?

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The La Russa Heartbreakometer

What is this?

Heart Left WWWWWW Heart right
Robbie Ray
RHP, 3-10, 3.72
Jake Arrieta
RHP, 17-6, 2.11
Ender Inciarte - RF Dexter Fowler - CF
A.J. Pollock - CF Austin Jackson - RF
Paul Goldschmidt - 1B Kris Bryant - LF
David Peralta - LF Anthony Rizzo - 1B
Jarrod Saltalamacchia - C Javier Baez - 3B
Jake Lamb - 3B Starlin Castro - 2B
Brandon Drury - 2B David Ross - C
Chris Owings - SS Jake Arrieta - RHP
Robbie Ray - LHP Addison Russell - SS

Some thoughts on yesterday's debacle, which may have been part of the worst seven innings ever thrown by the Diamondbacks. Including the last two frames of the series finale in Colorado, and the first five of the opener in Chicago, here's the line put up by our pitching staff:
D-backs: 7 IP, 20 H, 20 R, 12 ER, 9 BB, 3 SO
Ouch. Speaking of which, you'll note there are eight unearned runs in that tally. All of them came in the fifth inning, even though the last one was "earned" by Silvino Bracho. Turns out, runs can be earned by a pitcher, but unearned for the team. I wondered about this in the recap, and Al from BCB (and also a minor-league scorer!) clarified:

After two are out in an inning, if there's an error that should have been the third out, all runs are unearned TO THE TEAM. However, as you note, there was an earned run charged to the relief pitcher -- because he came in with a fresh slate, runs charged TO HIM are unearned, even though they are TEAM unearned runs. This is why, if you add up all the unearned runs for individual pitchers on a staff for the season, they likely won't be the same as the TEAM unearned runs, because situations like this (well, not 8-run innings, but you get what I mean) happen to almost every team a couple of times a year.

It's interesting the ESPN box-score still shows a total of seven earned runs by Arizona, but the B-Ref one has the right figure of six. I'm sure this has happened before, a reliever coming in and giving up a homer with two outs, but I never noticed. There is truly always something new in baseball. We've had one game where we allowed more unearned runs than yesterday's eight; back in 2001, when we gave up 10 against the Brewers. And lo, something similar happened there: Eric Knott started, was tagged for eight unearned in the fourth, and was replaced by Bobby Witt, who immediately gave up a home-run to Richie Sexson. Earned on Witt, unearned on the team.