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Snake Bytes, 5/4: B is for Blown

The B-bullpen couldn’t hold it together, but time for the D-backs to shake it off and move forward.

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MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona Diamondbacks Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports


[Arizona Sports] D-backs drop second straight, fail to win series vs. Dodgers - The D-backs led 2-1 entering the eighth inning but with Archie Bradley and Brad Boxberger both unavailable, having each pitched four times in five days, manager Torey Lovullo turned to Fernando Salas and then Jorge De La Rosa. Neither move worked. Why no Yoshihisa Hirano? Lovullo explained after the game he was saving the right-hander for a possible save situation in the ninth.

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks fall just shy of history after loss to Dodgers in series finale - “An unfortunate eighth inning ended up costing us today,” Lovullo said. “We just didn’t execute in key situations, gave up some hits and the Dodgers built an inning and capitalized. They scored four runs, so on a day like today that was the difference maker. We just couldn’t get cranked up offensively. I know that these guys are grinding. I know that these guys are working as hard as they possibly can to continue to improve offensively. It was just one of those days where we couldn’t get a big hit to maybe push across more than one run at a time.”

[] D-backs fall, split series with Dodgers - Rebounding from losses is something the D-backs have done well so far this year, as evidenced by the fact that it took them this long to drop two in a row. "I think last year just helped us understand that," Bradley said. "You can't take losses too seriously, especially the way we've been playing. Show up tomorrow and try to pick it back up." Said Lovullo: "Tomorrow is another day. We reload, we take a little bit of the evening off, get away from the grind of the game and come out tomorrow and be ready for a really, really fun and exciting series against the Houston Astros."

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[AZ Central] Where could Diamondbacks move? Here are possible stadium sites - The Diamondbacks could abandon the ballpark as early as 2022 after striking a potential deal with Maricopa County this week. And if the Major League Baseball team finds another stadium location in the county, the team could leave Chase Field and its 25-acre site without penalty. Here are a list of potential sites compiled from Phoenix-area land experts and developers. Not all of the sites are centrally located, but all are near freeways.

[Arizona Sports] Hall: D-backs' proposed Chase Field MOU with Maricopa County a win - Hall didn’t rule out refurbishing Chase Field as a potential solution to keep the D-backs in downtown Phoenix. “Everything’s an option,” he said. “That’s what that (MOU) does. It makes everything an option to go look and see what’s there, to see if you stay downtown, see if you stay at this location. We haven’t even been able to do that. It’s so early. We’re just thrilled that the relationship seems to be better, looks like litigation will be over, which is good for all parties and we can start to think about the future.”

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks reinstate Steven Souza Jr. from disabled list - “I’m excited. It’s been a long process,” Souza said. “Everything feels 100 percent. My throwing is completely back to normal, I’m running, diving, everything.” Souza, who was injured while diving to make a catch in spring training, was asked if he will try to play a little more under control so as to not land on the DL again anytime soon. “I’m going to do my best, but it think as we’ve seen I like to play all out,” he said. “I’m going to do my best to be smart in some situations, but if somebody tries to test me by going first to third, I might have to let it eat a little bit.”

[] A long road back - Medlen had been scheduled to start for Reno on Monday, but he was scratched and told that he would be headed to the big leagues to take the place of injured starter Robbie Ray. "It's everything," Medlen said of getting the callup. "I'm no Jonny Venters, but I've been through a little bit in terms of injury, and this is something at one point a couple of years ago when I was going to retire, something that I honestly wanted to happen, but thought it would never happen. I just have a ton of gratitude for this organization giving me a shot."

[The Athletic] Situational hitting bites the Diamondbacks again – - Arizona has managed to score a run in plate appearances with a runner on third and one or fewer outs just 39.2 percent of the time, which would have placed them second-to-last in baseball entering Wednesday. The league average is 49 percent. “There’s a lot of luck involved in baseball,” Pollock said. “If you put the right approach and the right at-bat and you look long-term, that’s kind of where you look at stuff. I don’t think anyone’s worried about our timely hitting.”

[AZ Central] The Arizona Diamondbacks are indeed for real this season - A year after a playoff run and a fifth of the way into the season, the Diamondbacks are a known quantity and one inning doesn’t change that – even if Lovullo plays it cool. “I think we’re still in that transition phase where we’re trying to create our own identity,” he told me outside the tunnel to the dugout Wednesday afternoon. “Last year’s identity was believing and understanding that we had a chance to be pretty good. And we went out and did it and built a foundation. And we’re probably standing on it today, knowing that we have something special going on here.”

[Roof and Panels Open] April Recap: Why Lose? - With every injury, Diamondback fans hold their breath and wonder whether the team will suffer. So far, nothing has been able to bring this team down. With the series win against Washington, the Diamondbacks have now won their first nine series, including two against the Dodgers, one against the Rockies, and one against the Nationals. No National League team has done that since the 1907 Cubs.

And, elsewhere...

[] These are the NL West's best pitches - Zack Godley's curveball. How he uses it: A lot. In fact, no pitcher in baseball has thrown a curveball more frequently than the 198 times Godley has used his this season. That increase in usage has effectively turned him from a No. 5 starter to a front-of-the-rotation type arm. What it does: Baseball features plenty of curveball specialists with big, looping breaking pitches that are deceptive because they change the pace. Not Godley. His curve gets on hitters quick. So much movement at such high velocity is precisely what makes Godley's curve extraordinarily difficult for hitters to pick up.

[Fangraphs] Trevor Bauer Might Have Conducted an Experiment - His spin-rate was up sharply in the first inning of his start, something Bauer has suggested recently could be achieved by the (illegal) use of pine tar. The article also looks at the pitchers who have added most to their spin-rate this year: Jorge De La Rosa is among the biggest gainers in this area, which is... interesting, after yesterday’s wildness and balk!

[ESPN] Could Angels' Mike Trout outproduce a tanking team's entire lineup?
- While Trout has been stellar, several teams have been decidedly less so. Four teams began Wednesday with a winning percentage under .300 and another four were under .400. There’s been a lot of bad baseball out there. So, yes, Trout could very easily end up with more WAR than another team’s entire group of position players.