Six straight series wins. Nine series wins this season at home matching the total from all of 2016. Nearly a month’s worth of games above .500. Fifteen wins in their last eighteen games. The best start in team history. Someone tell the Rockies and Dodgers to fall into place. As I type this, the Dodgers have already lost 4-0 to the Angels while the Rockies are currently losing 8-2 in the bottom of the eighth against the Giants. The Diamondbacks square off against the St. Louis Cardinals at home for the first time in 2017 when Taijuan Walker (6-3, 3.43 ERA) takes the mound against Carlos Martinez (6-6, 2.87). For his career against the Diamondbacks, Martinez has a 2.86 ERA in 28 1⁄3 innings in four starts and three relief appearances. It is worth noting that he allowed four earned runs in five innings in his last start against Arizona in May of 2016.
Diamondbacks 6, Phillies 1
[D’backs.com] Greinke picks up 9th win as D-backs cruise - Not quite the 22-3 pregame score prediction from DbacKid, but we will take it although it did appear to head in that direction in the first three innings. Greinke had a difficult first and fifth inning to bookend his otherwise respectable start. Although he only allowed three hits, three walks, and had five strikeouts when he left the game after the fifth inning throwing 102 pitches. The Phillies had an appropriate game plan by remaining patient and not swinging at pitches out of the zone. 20,765 fans on hand to view the lowly Phillies get dismantled on a Monday day game which is respectable by Chase Field standards.
"I was missing by a little bit and they were more patient than normal, so it was a bad combination for a pitch count," Greinke said. "I wasn't trying to miss by a little bit, but it was just happening and sometimes they'll swing at that pitch, but they weren't today."
[Arizona Sports] D-backs rough up Pivetta early to win series vs. Phillies - How incredible is the bullpen this year? Enough for a major league leading 1.04 ERA (edit: Since June 10th. Also, sue me.) Yesterday was no exception as Silvino Bracho, Rubby De La Rosa, and T.J. McFarland combined for four innings allowing no runs and only two hits. The lineup utilized by Torey Lovullo was again met with complaint. Again, the August and September months bring a brutal schedule with them, so early season rest may be a prerequisite to success there.
"Nice way to close out a series," Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. "We played an afternoon game and I thought the guys were prepared, ready and executed early."
[USA Today] Diamondbacks player hits home run into a pool full of angry Phillies fans - Get out of our pool then!
Dear Ken Kendrick, please sell your baseball card collection, open your pocketbook, and build a franchise around Paul Goldschmidt. He is a once in a lifetime, franchise altering player. Overpayment in the late years of a contract should be invalid, in my opinion, due to the steep discount the team has had him at since he entered the league. Arizona will attempt to make the playoffs for the first time since Paul made it to the show in 2011, and he has since been worth 30.3 WAR over 855 games. Goldy is in the midst of his best season yet. The conversation should at least begin at adding him for five additional years at the end of his contract. It cannot be denied that it seemed wise to move him at the beginning of the season with little to be optimistic about. However, this team is not in that same position as they were three months ago due in large part to his performance.
“Goldy is one of the most complete players that I have ever been around... I’ve seen a lot of talented players and Goldy is right up there with some of the elite ones... he’s one of the best players in the league hands down.” - Torey Lovullo
[AZ Central] Archie Bradley owning bullpen role, but still open to life as starter - The door to the starting rotation is not closed on Archie “The Destroyer” Bradley by any means The decision to keep him in the bullpen this season might be instrumental in his development going forward. He has the opportunity to develop further by facing major league pitching. The difference in approach might alter how he prepares as a starter should he be given that opportunity again. Look at the success Randall Delgado has had this season when using him as a starter was nearly a foregone conclusion.
“For this year, I’ve kind of accepted staying down there. I understand it. It’s working for us,” Bradley said Monday. “I feel like the way I’ve thrown the ball, my attitude and my tempo has kind of opened my eyes to what I can do again as a starter.”
[Arizona Sports] Goldschmidt, Lamb, Owings remain top-5 in ASG balloting - Jake Lamb falls victim to strong depth at the hot corner. Nolan Arenado deserves the nod as the starting third baseman for the Senior Circuit. Goldy will need assistance from the entire nation as voting comes to a close. Robbie Ray, Zack Greinke, and Archie Bradley are deserving of a manager selection in their own right.
[Venom Strikes] Arizona Diamondbacks’ starting pitching is the story of the year - Combine a deadly offense with a pitching staff that has a disdain for giving up anything and that will put a team on a playoff path. Taijuan Walker looks to continue his strong performance since returning from the disabled list. Each pitcher in the rotation, even those who have made spot starts, exude confidence and make fans believe that the team has a strong chance to win each time out. Stark contrast from the misery that was 2016.
[Inside the ‘Zona] Randall Delgado Putting More Pressure on Hitters - Lovullo has a manager’s
nightmare dream on his hands. Should the Diamondbacks be fortunate enough to reach the playoffs, the five man rotation will not be required. It will surely be difficult for him to decide who to leave out. Until then, Randall Delgado will be available to provide spot starts in order to preserve energy for the regulars in the late months. An increase in first pitch strikes has allowed Delgado to put added pressure on hitters early in the at bat.
Around the League
[ESPN] Power Rankings - Arizona cracks the ESPN top three for the first time this season and has a date with the first place Dodgers on the docket. Bleacher Report, USA Today, and FanRag Sports all have the team at #3 as well. MLB.com has Arizona at #4 behind the Nationals.
[CBS Sports] Top 15 MLB trade deadline candidates - Revisiting this topic again this edition. Which potential target is appealing to you? Who would you like to see Mike Hazen pursue, and who should he give up in return?
[Sports Illustrated] Charlie Sheen putting Babe Ruth's 1927 ring, Red Sox trade contract up for auction - Does the winning bid come with a gallon of hand sanitizer? I will settle for an autographed picture of the “Wild Thing”.
[FanRag] Federal court dismisses lawsuit from minor leaguers against MLB - Perhaps the best avenue for minor league players is outside of the court system. Progress could be had by forming a union and garnering support from the entirety of minor league players and their parent club counterparts.