Cactus League record: 0-2. Change on 2016: -1.
Arizona were held to just four hits this afternoon, while a relatively full-strength Colorado team (this being the strong end of a split-squad day for them) pounded out fourteen hits off the D-backs pitchers. Things started to go wrong immediately Braden Shipley took the mound. After the “visiting” Arizona hitters went down in order for the top of the first, Charlie Blackmon homered to lead off the bottom, immediately giving the Rockies a lead they would never relinquish.
Shipley walked the next batter, then retired three in a row to escape further damage, but was unable to get through the scheduled two innings. He allowed a double and an RBI single with one out, and was lifted one batter later. Rule 5 pick Tyler Jones came into the game, but allowed the runner inherited on first to score, through a stolen base and another RBI single. Nolan Arenado extended Colorado’s lead to 4-0 in the third inning, going deep off Kevin Jepsen. Arizona did get scoreless innings from Tom Wilhelmsen, Randall Delgado and Enrique Burgos, but Zack Godley allow a run in the seventh on four hits, and Evan Marshall the sixth and finally tally in the eighth, on three hits.
As noted, there was very little offense to speak of for Arizona. Jeremy Hazelbaker had the only extra-base hit of the day for the D-backs, a double in the seventh which brought home Dawel Lugo for Arizona’s only run. However, Hazelbaker was thrown out trying to stretch it into a triple. Jason Pridie drew both of the Arizona walks, and the other hits belonged to Daniel Descalso, Oswaldo Arcia and Lugo. A slightly smaller crowd at Salt River Fields this afternoon, 8,062 in attendance.
If you missed the mentions in the Gameday Thread, a couple of bits of news from the team. Reliever Jake Barrett is struggling with shoulder stiffness with no timetable announced for his further action. He did have an MRI, which indicated there was no structural damage, just some inflammation. Fingers crossed this doesn’t turn into anything more significant. Manager Torey Lovullo also said he has floated the idea with Braden Shipley of potentially moving to the bullpen, if he doesn’t win a rotation spot this spring. After the game, Shipley said of his afternoon’s work:
“I was really excited, had a lot of fun even though a couple things happened. It’s spring training, you just learn from your mistakes. Threw some really good pitches that I really liked, curveball looked really good, which I’m happy with because with my timing and my delivery right now had been inconsistent, but today was back to normal. Other than that, it was just getting a little quick down the hill, pulling some pitches. That’s why we have spring training.”
Tomorrow’s game sees the D-backs back as the home team at Salt River Fields again, still seeking their first Cactus League win as they take on the Cincinnati Reds. First pitch will be 1:10pm, with Patrick Corbin the scheduled starter for Arizona.