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Preview, #37: 5/10 vs. Nationals

A win tonight, and it’d be a good bet Arizona will get to extend the undefeated series streak, in this four-game series.

Los Angeles Dodgers v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Bryce Harper - RF David Peralta - LF
Trea Turner - SS Daniel Descalso - 3B
Anthony Rendon - 3B Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
Matt Adams - 1B A.J. Pollock - CF
Howie Kendrick - 2B Steven Souza - RF
Matt Wieters - C Ketel Marte - 2B
Michael Taylor - CF Nick Ahmed - SS
Tanner Roark - RHP Jeff Mathis - C
Andrew Stevenson - LF Zack Greinke - RHP

Back to Chase Field come the D-backs, after splitting two games on the road in Los Angeles. This will be their 20th home game, so I guess that means, tomorrow, I should probably update #HumidorWatch2018 with the latest batch of statistics. Sleep. It’s vastly over-rated. For now, we start a four-game series against the Nationals, and there’s still no official word on who’ll be the starting pitchers for the Diamondbacks over the weekend. Matt Koch will get the start tomorrow - facing, inevitably, a Cy Young winner, this time in the shape of Max Scherzer! But beyond that? Could be one of at least three potential candidates, depending on what happens.

T.J. McFarland is the in-house option; while he was used during the marathon game on Wednesday, he didn’t throw that many pitches, so providing he’s not used tonight or tomorrow, would be available on Saturday. Troy Scribner, who has started five games for the Reno Aces, is another possibility: he should have started earlier this week, but was replaced for his scheduled start, perhaps a clue of some kind. And then there’s Taylor Clarke, the pitching prospect candidate, who is also part of the Aces rotation. He started for them on Monday, which would make Saturday his regular turn. None of them seem ideal, and all have pluses and minuses.

Tonight, however, it’s Zack Greinke, who has been a bit unlucky this year. His K-rate is the highest it has been since 2011, at 10.2 per nine innings, and his K:BB ratio is a startling 7.8. But his ERA is 4.10; that’s an ERA+ of only 105, though I’m taking all park-adjusted numbers for the Diamondbacks this year with a pinch of salt. Could be a tough match-up, with the Nationals sending out Tanner Roark, who beat the Diamondbacks when he last faced them, in July last year. He held Arizona to three hits and two runs over seven innings, striking out seven batters. More than one hit per game with RISP would be helpful; that’s all we managed in the series against the Dodgers.