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D-backs 4, Cardinals 0 - Godley, Martinez Grand in victory

Zack Godley was excellent and J.D. Martinez hit another homer as the D-backs took the opening game.

MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into tonight’s game, Zack Godley was slumping. His last two starts he’d given up a total of 11 runs (10 earned) including 2 homers. There was some bad luck of course, with a BABIP of .407 offset by 19 strikeouts, so maybe it was luck evening things out over the course of the season. If there ever was a time for Godley to turn it around, this was the game to do so. And boy did he ever.

Godley continued his assault on opposing batters, striking out 7 over his 7IP, allowing just 4 singles and 2 walks to stifle the Cardinals all night long. And while this Cards team isn’t like the Cards’ teams of old, they still have some very solid and young hitters out there. 5 hitters have OPS of .800 or higher. The 6th is Randal Grichuk, who is a good young hitter himself.

But Godley did what he did best, and got ground balls when he needed them. The Cardinals threatened in the 1st with back to back 1-out singles, but a double play ball erased that threat. He cruised his way through the Redbirds until the 6th, when Matt Carpenter singled to lead off the inning and Paul DeJong walked with 1-out. But again, Godley showed poise, getting a ground ball and strike out to end the inning.

Torey Lovullo showed his faith in the young pitcher, allowing him to hit for himself and take the mound in the 7th. Godley rewarded that faith with a clean 12-pitch inning to end his night.

Godley is making a very strong case to remain in the starting rotation for next year. His start tonight lowered his ERA/FIP/xFIP to 3.06/3.03/3.18 with an excellent K/9 rate and GB%. Hat-tip to Dave Stewart for the blind luck needed to acquire this kid.

Despite the 4 runs and 8 hits, the offense struggled to string anything together against Luke Weaver. The 4th was where the offense finally broke free, with A.J Pollock doubling to lead off the inning. Weaver nibbled after that, walking both Jake Lamb and Paul Goldschmidt on full counts to bring up J.D. (Just Dongs) Martinez, who continues to make the trade look like an excellent one.

His home run flew just inside the right field foul pole for his 4th home run as a D-backs to give us our final score 4-0. Unfortunately, the bats went quiet after that, with Pollock being caught stealing twice to end any chance of a scoring opportunity.

The bullpen did its job after the excellent start from Godley, with Archie Bradley and Fernando Rodney shutting down the Cardinals in the 8th and 9th innings to secure the victory.

Source: FanGraphs

Zack Godley (29.6%) gets the MVP nods for tonight’s game, shutting down the Cardinals in his 7 innings of work. Other contributors include J.D. Martinez (14.4%) and Paul Goldschmidt (12.0%).

Comment of the thread goes to onedotfive, who says what everyone is thinking.

Game #2 tomorrow night, with first pitch expected at 5:15 AZ time. Robbie Ray faces Michael Wacha. Be there.