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Preview #79: Arizona Diamondbacks vs. St. Louis Cardinals

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Marte on, Wayne! Marte on, Garth...

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
Matt Carpenter - 1B Daniel Descalso - LF
Tommy Pham - CF David Peralta - RF
Stephen Piscotty - RF Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
Jedd Gyorko - 3B Jake Lamb - 3B
Yadier Molina - C Chris Owings - SS
Randal Grichuk - LF Brandon Drury - 2B
Paul DeJong - SS Rey Fuentes - CF
Greg Garcia - 2B Jeff Mathis - C
Adam Wainwright - RHP Zack Godley - RHP

Except there's no actual Marte present in the starting line-up for Arizona this afternoon. The loss of Nick Ahmed with a fractured hand, for an indeterminate amount of time, certainly puts a dent in the D-backs defense, though offensively, it may well turn out to be close to a wash. That will depend on how Marte adjusts to life in the majors, compared to the stellar numbers put up in Reno. We've seen enough of these before: let's not forget, Fuentes was hitting .376 for the Aces at the time of his call-up. His drop off has been about 250 OPS points (.884 to .637), and it would not be a shock if Marte's numbers end up taking a similar hit. Hopefully without the wretched adjustment period Fuentes had.

The Rockies have already lost, dropping their eighth game in a row, as they were swept in San Francisco. So in terms of our battle with them, tonight will already count as playing with house money. However, as they recede in our rear-view mirror - likely into a battle with the Brewers for the second-wild card spot - we can turn our focus of bright, shining hate, entirely onto the Dodgers. There's no denying, they have the inside track, including a superior farm system from which they can trade, and far greater financial resources and flexibility. But with a dozen games between the teams to come, the Diamondbacks hold their fate in their own hands.

Likely best not to get too caught up in scoreboard watching. Torey Lovullo has made a tenet of his time the concept of winning moments, like an individual at-bat, and using those as building blocks towards victory. It seems a good way for players to stay focused. I think we saw a positive example of that last night, after the hellacious inning of sinning. Would have been very easy for that to linger around and the team to give up, both as individuals and collectively. But they did a very good job of putting it behind them, and working their way back into the game. We may look back on that victory as one of the defining moments of the season. Here's to another series being clinched tonight.