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Dbacks 5, Cubs 1: Buchholz return from DL fantastic, offense gets more tacos

Different look from the offense tonight, but Buchholz continued the dominate starting pitching we’ve seen lately, and the offense did their part too.

MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at Chicago Cubs Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

They say good pitching is infectious, and They may be right. After the two gems from Zack Grienke and Patrick Corbin, Clay Buchholz made his return from the disabled list and looked to continue the streak of long, well-pitched outings. He made it clear very early on that he was more than up to the challenge, getting the first two outs on three pitches, and then only needing three more to get the third out.

It took him a little big longer in the bottom of the second, as he gave up a one out walk to Ian Happ before striking out Kyle Schwarber and Addison Russell to end the inning. He sat the side down in order in the third, adding another strike out, and worked around a one out single in the fourth to keep the Cubs in check once again.

On the flip side, the Diamondbacks offense was getting runners on, but failing to get them home, as has been something of a theme with them and MLB as a whole this season. Back-to-back two out singles started the game in the first inning, but Lamb struck out about thirty seconds after the radio crew mentioned how Kyle Hendricks didn’t strike many hitters out to end the threat.

More of the same in the third. Jon Jay and Paul Goldschmidt singled and walked, respectively, with one out. After Peralta struck out for the second out, Steven Sousa Jr. drew another walk to load the bases. But another strike out from Lamb ended the threat again.

They were able to finish the job in the fifth, however. Jay got it going with a one out triple, and Goldy immediately brought him home with an RBI single. David Peralta moved him to third with a dribbler to the catcher, and Souza Jr. stretched a single into a double, scoring Goldschmidt and replacing him at second, bringing Lamb to the plate. Lamb did not strike out this time. Instead, he singled and collected an RBI, bringing the score to 3. Ketel Marte wasn’t able to keep it going, though, and grounded out to end the inning. 3-0 Diamondbacks

They added another in the sixth inning. Ahmed and Avila both singled were moved to second and third on a Buchholz bunt. Jay brought home a run in exchange for the second out. Goldschmidt walked to load the bases, but Peralta flew out to end the threat. 4-0 Dbacks

Buchholz kept cruising for the most part. He hit his roughest patch of the evening in the fifth when he gave up a lead off single, which was erased on a double play, and then a two out walk, but nothing came of it. He did give up a solo home run sixth, but it was the only run he gave up on the evening. 4-1 Arizona

In the top of the seventh, the Diamondbacks offense went down in order, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t eventful. Souza Jr. tried to stretch another single into a double, but wasn’t successful this time. He slid hard into second, and some of the Cubs players didn’t appreciate it. This would come back up later.

Lovullo allowed Buchholz to go back out for the seventh, which seemed like a good call right at first. Clay got two quick outs and looked to be about to finish the inning off, but back-to-back singles to Ben Zobrist and Victor Caratini knocked him out of the game. Andrew Chafin came in and walked the only batter he faced. Archie Bradley then replaced him, and got Arizona out of the inning, with no damaged done.

Both teams were quiet in the eighth inning, with Bradley sitting the Cubs down in order. Things picked back up in the top of the ninth, though. David Peralta singled with two outs, to bring Souza to the plate. He was pretty clearly intentionally hit (though I’m sure that MLB will ignore it as always) in retaliation for the hard slide in the seventh. Anthony Rizzo then had some words for him when he made it down to first, even though Rizzo had nothing to do with the original play.

The Diamondbacks responded in the best way possible to the Cubs childishly extending the game. Descalso walked and Marte hit an infield single to get an RBI. That was the ball game. Brad Boxberger got the save, and the final score was 5-1 Diamondbacks.

★★★ Clay Buchholz, 27.1% WPA

★★ Steven Souza Jr. 16.3%, Archie Bradley 15.5%

Jon Jay 10.4%

Quiet GDT, with Justin having almost double the comments of anyone else at 87. All present were:

AzDbackfanInDc, AzRattler, DORRITO, Dano_in_Tucson, DesertWeagle, GuruB, Imstillhungry95, Jack Sommers, Jim McLennan, Justin27, Juvi Juice, Makakilo, Michael McDermott, MikeMono, MrMrrbi, Renin, Rockkstarr12, aldma, asteroid, coldblueAZ, edbigghead, gamepass, hotclaws, onedotfive, since_98, smartplays, suroeste

Early game tomorrow, so make sure to have your sick leave notes ready. First pitch at 11:20AM Arizona time. See you there!