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Snake Bytes, 6/7: Thank you, Padres

See, I told you their line-up was full of made-up players...

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San Diego Padres v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images


[] D-backs' bats break out in win over Padres - Lamb got the D-backs' offense going in the first, when he drove in a pair of runs with a double to right. The hit came after Gregor Blanco doubled and Paul Goldschmidt was hit by a pitch, and it kept Lamet from getting out of the inning unscathed. "The big two-run double, I thought, was a key moment for us," D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. "Kind of got us off on the right foot, and allowed us to play downhill baseball. Jake's having a tremendous year. He is an offensive force, and he's hitting No. 4 for us for a reason, and he's had some big knocks for us."

[Arizona Sports] Robbie Ray strikes out 11, D-backs rekindle offense to beat Padres - Offensively, the D-backs erupted after having a tough series in Miami, which included being no-hit. As a team, Gregor Blanco, Lamb, Paul Goldschmidt, Owings, and Daniel Descalso all contributed runs or RBI in the victory. The D-backs pitching staff allowed two home runs to Hunter Renfroe, the second multi-HR game of his career. Goldschmidt and Herrmann were both hit by pitches in the game. Goldy was fine, manager Torey Lovullo said, while Herrmann left the game with right hand soreness.

[AZ Central] Surging Robbie Ray 'locked in' for Diamondbacks - He lowered his season ERA to 2.85 and now has won his last four starts, improving his record to 6-3. In those four starts Ray has allowed just eight hits and one run over 30 1/3 innings while striking out 35. That’s Randy Johnson-like. “It’s as good as I’ve seen and I’ve been around some pretty outstanding pitchers,” manager Torey Lovullo said. “It just feels like he’s been locked in. I know the scoreless streak ended today but when you’re doing something for that long of a period, and it’s starting to become more of the tendency, you’re starting to establish yourself at a different level.”

Team News

[AZ Central] D-Backs' thievery stalls, but just the threat is a 'good thing' - The running game has stalled out in recent weeks, with the Diamondbacks becoming an increasingly sedentary offense. Some of that might be related to personnel but, more than likely, it’s a matter of opportunity. And that isn’t entirely bad, in the eyes of Diamondbacks baserunning guru Dave McKay. “What you’re seeing – and I mentioned this to the guys – is that these pitchers are quick to the plate and when you force guys to be quick to the plate they make mistakes with their pitches, and that’s a good thing,” said McKay, the Diamondbacks' first base coach. “Then you’ve got shortstops and second basemen holding you close to the bag and playing out of position, and it gives your partner, the hitter, a chance to hit a ball through there.”

[] Manfred supports D-backs on ballpark issue | - "We concur wholeheartedly with the Diamondbacks' position that there are substantial needs here, with respect to this stadium, to keep it as a Major League-quality stadium," Manfred said. "It would be unusual for a tenant to be responsible for those sorts of capital repairs, and we think the Diamondbacks have taken the correct position... I think the real issue is, has the landlord made the capital improvements that are always necessary in the stadium in between its 10th and 20th years in order to keep it of a Major League quality. And I think the county's own study, as well as those studies that have been done by the club, both of which we've reviewed, suggest that's not the case."

[AZ Central] Bickley: MLB Commissioner treading on dangerous ground in Arizona - This is also a no-win position for the team and the commissioner, mostly because the issue seems so implausible. Manfred said there were “substantial needs” to keep Chase Field up to MLB standards, and those in his office “concur wholeheartedly” with the team’s position. That message has zero chance in the court of public opinion. Valley residents will not tolerate a second round of public funding to cover any shortfalls, especially for a stadium that once tore this community apart. Baseball fans wonder how a facility that opened in 1998 could be in such a state of disrepair, especially when the team keeps encouraging them to buy tickets and experience the beauty of live baseball.

[Arizona Sports] - Goldschmidt, Owings remain fourth in latest All-Star balloting - After the second balloting update, D-backs first baseman Paul Goldschmidt and shortstop Chris Owings remain in fourth place in National League voting for their respective positions. Goldschmidt (363,431 votes) trails the NationalsRyan Zimmerman, who leads the NL first basemen in voting with 670,671. Owings, with 328,217 votes, trails the DodgersCorey Seager by 276,566 votes for first place among NL shortstops.

[SI] Breaking down Robbie Ray's two-week stretch of brilliance - He’s one of five starters this season with a strikeout rate of at least 30% and since the start of last year he ranks fifth in the majors with a 28.7% strikeout rate. The pitchers ahead of him are the Nationals' Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg, the Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw and the Mets' Noah Syndergaard. None of this answers the following question, though: What has gotten into Ray over his last three starts? The good news is we can put together a satisfying answer. It all starts with his pitch usage stats

[AZ Central] Randall Delgado earns spot in Diamondbacks rotation - Delgado has struck out 15 batters in 15 innings while walking just two, convincing Lovullo that he deserves to remain in the rotation rather than returning to his role as a long man out of the bullpen. “We’re going to allow Randall to continue getting the ball every fifth day,” Lovullo said. “He’s been throwing the ball extremely well. Things I’m talking about: Repeating his delivery, a three-pitch mix, big outs, big moments, not getting glassy-eyed and on the attack.” Delgado will start Friday against Milwaukee. Godley will take the ball on Saturday.

[Venom Strikes] 5 players Diamondbacks should acquire - Arizona jumped out to a 34-25 start through Monday, and sits just two games back in the NL West with a 3.5-game lead over the Cubs for the second NL Wild Card spot. According to FanGraphs’ most up-to-date projected standings, the Diamondbacks have what it takes to complete the season in that No. 2 spot. Of course, to increase those odds, the Diamondbacks may to tweak their roster. Though the farm system isn’t deep, and doesn’t have much in terms of elite talent, the club has enough to acquire at least one of the following five players prior to the trade deadline.

And, elsewhere...

[ESPN] Jean Segura, Seattle Mariners agree to extension - Shortstop Jean Segura and the Seattle Mariners have agreed to a five-year, $70 million extension, according to multiple reports. The deal reportedly includes a $17 million option for 2023. Segura is in his first season with Seattle, which acquired him in a five-player trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks in November. The Mariners gave up a talented, young pitcher -- Taijuan Walker -- for Segura, but in exchange, they got a leadoff hitter at a position of long need.

[Deadspin] Scooter Gennett Is The Least Likely Player Ever To Hit Four Home Runs In A Game - None of this was supposed to happen. Gennett, a 27-year-old, 5-foot-10 career second baseman, was waived by the Brewers at the end of spring training, and picked up by the Reds to be a utility guy, which entailed learning some new positions. He’s started four games at third base this year, which he’d never played in the majors. He was in left field last night, a position he’d never played before this season. His previous outfield experience had consisted of one inning in 2014.

[SI] How to Homer: One SI writer's quest to go deep in an MLB park - Could a 45-year-old writer with no baseball experience beyond seventh grade, armed with only desire and an obsessive work ethic, go deep in a major league park? It would take a helluva lot of swings to find out