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Snake Bytes 06/11: Praise be to God(ley)

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Another sterling start from the understudy of Zack-Zack & Associates.

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MLB: Milwaukee Brewers at Arizona Diamondbacks Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Not quite the offensive slugfest that was Friday night. The Arizona pitching staff managed to hold a potent Milwaukee offense to only two hits in front of a reported crowd of 40,195. Today’s 1:10 PM rubber match features two scorching hot pitchers in Robbie Ray (6-3, 2.85 ERA) against Chase Anderson (5-1, 2.94 ERA) before Arizona embarks on an eight game road trip. Anderson has pitched 21 23 consecutive scoreless innings while Ray has only allowed 1 earned run in his last 4 starts.

Diamondbacks 3, Brewers 2

[D’backs.com] Drury's HR backs Godley as D-backs nip Crew - It was fairly unfortunate that Brandon Drury was not called in to pinch hit for Nick Ahmed with the bases loaded on Friday night. Although it is not certain that he would have put the Diamondbacks ahead at that time, that was exactly what he did on Saturday night. Drury worked his way back from an 0-2 count with two outs to blast a two run shot to left field off of Junior Guerra. Guerra appeared to be more concerned with Chris Owings on first base as he nearly threw one into the stands allowing Owings to take second before the home run from Drury.

"I was seeing his pitches pretty good tonight," Drury said. "He got me the first couple at-bats, I felt like I just missed a couple of pitches. He got me down 0-2, and I was just trying to battle. I kind of thought he was going to come with the split-finger there 3-2 and he did, and I just put a good swing on it."

[Arizona Sports] Godley impressive again as D-backs edge Brewers - Zack Godley has been nothing short of impressive in his starts this season. Unfortunately, I had just prepared to post how comfortable and in control he appeared in last night’s GDT at the same time he hit Jesus Aguilar in the stomach with a pitch. Expecting him to get out of the inning quickly with two outs already, I kept the post ready to go before he abruptly gave up a two run home run to Hernan Perez. Not wanting to be mocked for posting that I quickly cleared it out and continued to watch in silence. Crisis averted. Godley is certainly making it difficult to remove him from the rotation once Taijuan Walker is back putting added pressure on Patrick Corbin to perform. Zack needed only 80 pitches to make it through 6 23 innings.

“I think this team can impact the game — any time, any batter, at any moment — and they know it. We feel like we’re never out of any ballgame until the final out.” – Torey Lovullo

Tony Clark ™.

[ESPN] Godley, Drury lead Arizona past Brewers 3-2 - The contrast in offensive performance between Friday’s and Saturday’s games was mirrored by the difference in attendance as well. Last night was Native American Recognition Day in addition to the first 20,000 fans receiving a beach towel. The Diamondbacks do deserve better support at home, and hopefully victories similar to last night and Opening Day will work towards bringing more fans to the stadium.

Diamondbacks News

[Arizona Sports] D-backs catchers, a 2016 vs. 2017 comparison: By the numbers - Take a team that was dead last in ERA last year at 5.09 to one with the fourth best ranking in 2017, and it is easy to see why the Diamondbacks are still in the hunt come June. Improved framing has allowed pitchers, like Zack Greinke, to pitch out of the zone while the catchers attempt to steal more borderline pitches for strikes. Jeff Mathis and Chris Iannetta are ranked as the eighth and ninth best pitch framers in the league respectively. The new three headed catching staff may not produce as many runs as Wellington Castillo, but that is a tradeoff Mike Hazen was willing to accept. Chris Iannetta has not exactly been a slouch with his bat this season, though.

[D’backs.com] Godley continues to excel amid uncertainty - Godley has been the journeyman this season purely for the sake of roster flexibility as he still has minor league options available. Thin bullpen depth combined with solid performance from those already in there as of late make it difficult for Lovullo to make a change. For the time being, Godley will need to remain comfortable with keeping his bags packed at all times.

"All I can control is what I can control," Godley said. "When they give me the opportunity to pitch, take advantage of that. Hopefully I can keep doing well in that role and keep working toward getting that spot. What they decide to do with me has nothing to do with me. I can't control any of that. All I can do is go out on the mound and pitch and hopefully do well enough to stay."

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks' Robbie Ray, Brewers' Chase Anderson eager for friendly matchup - The game today will force two friends to face each other on the mound for the first time in their young careers. Robbie Ray and Chase Anderson became friends during their shared time in Arizona through their Christian faith. This may be a game determined by which friend will crack first provided that both continue to perform as they have been recently.

Around the League

[Cut4] Stellar names in MLB Draft: Handsome? - Figured I should partake in the stellar draft analysis conducted by James and Michael lately. Wonder what Jim would say A.J. Bumpass’ chances of being a 10+ bWAR player are. My personal favorite would probably have to be D’Mond LaFond. The draft begins Monday, June 12th and the Diamondbacks hold the 7th overall pick in the draft. It is time to restock the farm system with a colorful name or two.

[CBS Sports] Ranking MLB managers on the hot seat after Cardinals' Matheny dodges bullet - What a difference one year makes. In an offseason full of changes for the Diamondbacks, it can be quite difficult to pinpoint one variable as the culprit for success. However, Torey Lovullo deserves his fair share of credit for the results this season. I particularly enjoy observing how he handles the pitching staff. He has allowed his starting pitchers to battle through tough innings early in the season which can help build confidence. Some of the names on this list appear unlikely to go anywhere. For example, I find it difficult to believe Bruce Bochy will be fired after one down season in San Francisco. On the other hand, it would be ideal if Bob Melvin would be fired, again highly unlikely, so that he could find his way back to the Arizona desert where he belongs.

[Sports on Earth] 8 of MLB’s Most Underrated Players - The only person in Arizona who undervalued Ender Inciarte was Davey boy. I really do not want to dig up a horse that has been six feet under for quite some time, but the former Diamondback is currently the 10th most valuable outfielder over the past 3 years according to Fangraphs. Marcell Ozuna makes the list as well, and it has been rumored that the Marlins may look to move him if they continue to struggle. My first call would be to Stewart if he somehow manages to land in the front office of that team.

[ESPN Insider] Strengths, weaknesses of every MLB farm system - A brief breakdown of each farm system and their needs. It may take years to determine the effectiveness of Mike Hazen’s draft strategy, and while the Arizona system is shallow it is not entirely devoid of talent. The parent club has the advantage of controllable young players giving the new front office the flexibility needed to rebuild the farm.