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Snake Bytes. 7/5: Indifference Day


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[AP] D-backs' home struggles continue with loss to Padres - The home losses keep piling up for the Arizona Diamondbacks, and they will soon find themselves alone in the cellar in the NL West if they can't figure out a way to beat the San Diego Padres. With Zack Greinke hurt, Archie Bradley (3-4) started and had another uneven performance. He struck out seven, walked three and gave up two home runs. "Frustrating again," Bradley said. "I have good innings then really bad innings. I need to put a complete game together."

[] Inconsistency still plaguing Bradley - Bradley gave up a season-high five runs for the third time in Monday's 8-4 loss to the Padres, allowing six hits and three walks. The right-hander pitched with a lead on two separate occasions, but couldn't hold onto it, giving up two-run homers to both Yangervis Solarte and Derek Norris. "You take a look at most of my outings and not to take credit away from the other team, but I put myself in bad situations and keep continuing to do it," Bradley said. "I've got to find a way to work through it, I've got to find a way to get better."

[Arizona Sports] Diamondbacks late-inning pitching woes continue - Over the course of losing eight of their last nine games, the Diamondbacks have allowed 25 runs in the last three innings of their games, which calculates out to an ERA of 8.33. "It has happened in the middle of the game, where either our starter is on the third time around or our middle reliever is just not getting the job done," Hale said to the media afterward. "But we’re just walking the lead-off hitter — it just spells doom. We did it tonight after we scored the run to go ahead (3-2 in the fifth), and then Archie went out to walk the lead-off guy.

[AZ Central] Late-game pitfalls highlight Diamondbacks' loss to Padres - Optimism was still palpable in the seventh inning, especially after the Diamondbacks had runners on second and third and only one out. But after blanking on that golden opportunity to wipe away a two-run deficit to the Padres, Arizona’s outlook only worsened as a three-run eighth by the visitors sealed an eventual 8-4 loss at the outset of a three-game series at Chase Field – the team’s final homestand before next week’s All-Star break. "We’re just not playing winning baseball right now," manager Chip Hale said. "That’s what it comes down to."

Team news

[AZ Central] Castillo, Herrmann serve as steady, productive duo for Diamondbacks - Welington Castillo and Chris Herrmann aren’t Buster Posey. They’re not Salvador Perez and they’re not Wilson Ramos. Their numbers at the plate are solid, not sexy — pleasant, not eye-popping. When Castillo and Herrmann’s numbers are combined? Different story. Together the Diamondbacks’ catchers entered Monday with a combined 16 home runs and 55 RBIs, both best among all catchers or catching corps in the major leagues. They combine for a 3.0 wins above replacement value — also best of all catching tandems.

[CBSSports] Meet Jake Lamb, baseball's next great power-hitting third baseman - The D-Backs have had a lot of success not only developing position players, but getting them to surpass their perceived ceilings. Both Paul Goldschmidt and A.J. Pollock developed into much better hitters -- and better all-around players, at that -- than expected, and now it appears Lamb is doing the same. No, he's not Bryant or Arenado, but Lamb is an impressive young player who is coming into his own in 2016.

[AZ Central] Ziegler, Hudson could be trade chips for Diamondbacks - Already, the relievers’ names have worked their way into prominent trade rumors. FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reported last week that some teams are intrigued by the idea of acquiring both in a package deal as a sort of bullpen makeover. Last week’s trade of closer Fernando Rodney could give the Diamondbacks some sort of framework for what they can expect in return for one or both pitchers. To pry Rodney away from the Padres, the Marlins had to part with promising pitching prospect Chris Paddack, a significant return in the eyes of several rival scouts.

[] Ahmed returns from paternity leave - "It's been great, it's kind of a hard feeling to describe," Ahmed said. "He's been doing great, sleeping and eating, and it's just awesome. I got there and she was stable, they had the baby all checked out and everything was good," Ahmed said. "Just looking at him, you want to raise him right and teach him the things that you know. It just gives you a little bit of perspective. When I go through stuff now, it's not just for me and my wife, but it's for him as well."

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks return Peter O'Brien to Triple-A after tough stint - "It just got the point where he wasn’t going to get everyday at-bats," manager Chip Hale said. "His first 50 appearances were pretty much as an everyday guy. The numbers just didn’t support him to keep playing at that point. It’s very difficult with his swing to maintain it with these few at-bats... The ones he was swinging at for the most part and striking out were pitches nobody could hit. They were in the dirt; they were out of the zone. So if he can shrink that zone back down to where he can handle it, he’s going to have some success."

And, elsewhere...

[] All-Star teams announced Tuesday, 4 p.m AZ time - The people have spoken and the countdown is on. After 68 consecutive days of relentless fan voting to determine starting position players for the 87th All-Star Game on July 12 at Petco Park in San Diego, the largest All-Star balloting program in sports closed at 11:59 p.m. ET on Thursday. Starting position players will be unveiled in the Esurance All-Star Selection Show at 7 p.m. ET today on ESPN, prior to the Pirates-Cardinals broadcast.

[Fox] Notorious baseball collector blasted for crashing special Fort Bragg game - Oh, look: Zack Hample has been a dick again. Why am I unsurprised by this news? "It looks like someone crashed the Marlins-Braves game at Fort Bragg on Sunday night, and it's causing quite the uproar. Self-proclaimed baseball collector Zack Hample tweeted an image of a baseball he obtained during the special event, sparking a significant amount of criticism on Twitter."

[SI] Computers will write baseball stories for the AP - "With the help of natural language algorithm company Automated Insights, the Associated Press announced Thursday that it will be publishing written content created by computers. The Associated Press is only doing this for minor league games, of the type that they would not previously have been able to cover, and the stories will be heavily based off of data provided by Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM). A total of 142 previously uncovered teams will now enjoy a little bit of press, even if a human doesn’t write it." I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords.

What if Ted Williams never left baseball to serve in the military? - Williams missed about seven seasons serving his country and parts of others dealing with nagging injuries relating to his time at war. But he never complained and when asked which was the best team he had ever played for, he responded without hesitation, "The United States Marine Corps." So when someone asks the seemingly impossible question, "How much greater would Ted Williams have been had he not missed so much time due to World War II and the Korean war?", it is actually very simple to answer. He wouldn’t.