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Snake Bytes 8/21: Don’t Look Back

The race for a playoff position in the National League consists of seven teams within two games of each other in the standings. By focusing on what they can control, the Arizona Diamondbacks can emerge with a berth.

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Arizona Diamondbacks v San Diego Padres Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images

Arizona Diamondbacks News

[D’] Inbox: Will rotation be altered down stretch? - We’re a few weeks away from seeing names such as Chris Owings, Christian Walker, Jimmie Sherfy, and Silvino Bracho rejoin the roster. When the calendar month turns to September, all Major League teams can promote any player on the 40 man roster to the big league squad. D’backs beat reporter Steve Gilbert fields a handful of questions regarding the impending expansion and playing time going forward.

[D’] D-backs adjusting rotation in coming days - With additional arms in the bullpen, and two days off in the same week, Torey Lovullo is entitled to get creative with his pitching staff. It would be wise to avoid having a starter go through a lineup a third time as much as possible, but the added benefit is saving miles on the arms for an extended postseason run.

[Arizona Sports] Paul Goldschmidt’s outstanding August road trip: By the numbers - David Peralta’s tie with Paul Goldschmidt for most career games with 4+ hits lasted but only a few days. Goldy laid waste to the Cincinnati Reds, Texas Rangers, and San Diego Padres on the concluded road trip, and the team will need him to continue his ways over the stretch run to bring October baseball back to the Valley. Better for him to get the slump out of the way at the beginning of the season when there was still time to correct course.

[AZ Central] MLB playoff picture: Diamondbacks, Rockies, Dodgers locked in battle for NL West title - About the only thing certain during this murky playoff race is that two or three teams will come agonizingly close to making the postseason, only to be booking tee times in October. I hear Magic Johnson owns a nice course or two that the Los Angeles Dodgers can enjoy. Not like they’ll have anything else to do.

[The Athletic] Elite in April but mediocre in August, A.J. Pollock may now be finding his rhythm again - What’s better than one MVP caliber player in the middle of the D’backs lineup? How about A.J. Pollock playing at the elite level he was at the beginning of the season? Much like Jake Lamb’s balky shoulder slowed his performance down upon his return, Pollock’s absence probably threw his timing off as well. Arizona’s offense could be nearly unstoppable with Goldy, Pollock, David Peralta, and Eduardo Escobar firing on all cylinders at the same time.

“I had a couple that I felt like I got at our place that didn’t go out, but I think the consistency just hasn’t been there,” Pollock said. “I feel like I’m on to something good right now. It’s just baseball. You feel all right, the results are OK, you’re trying to get on a little bit of a roll and get into a rhythm.”

Around the League

[ESPN] Power Rankings: Sizzling sluggers shake things up - Power rankings this week consist of drawing the teams ranked 7 through 14 out of a hat at random. ESPN jumps Arizona two spots to #8. CBS Sports places the D’backs at #9. shows no movement also at #9. The Athletic has consistently felt stronger than the pack about Arizona at #7.

[Yahoo Sports] 10 Degrees: The unbelievably close National League and how 2018 may provide an all-time-great pennant race - I’ll save you a brief click. The National League playoff race is an absolute cluster, so get your anxiety medication ready. Arizona has the most challenging remaining schedule of any playoff contender in either league, but that also means a few teams can have their postseason hopes crushed by those same D’backs.

[Bleacher Report] ‘I Find It Very Difficult’ to Watch: Why MLB Greats Think Baseball’s in Trouble - Sigh. Baseball. Isn’t. Broken. So. There. Isn’t. Anything. To. Fix. This article did a damn good job of going on an endless rant, making it more painful to sit through than today’s game. There is no denying that the game has changed, but if you don’t love the sport at its fundamental core maybe it was never for you in the first place. MLB doesn’t put its fans through all the controversy and bullshit off the field as the NFL does. Who gives a damn if the box score is dominated by the three true outcomes? Who cares if most pitchers can’t make it past the 6th inning? It makes it that much more special when a born again pitcher like Clay Buchholz, who had to settle for a minor league deal because his career was derailed, twirl a complete game. Wanna know why he was even put in that position? I’ll give you a hint, it’s not because he has dominating “stuff” like Randy Johnson or Curt Schilling. It’s because he and his catcher followed the gameplan to a T, and his front office has put together an elite defense behind him. A defense that studies and understands assignments. If that isn’t the kind of game you want to see, maybe it’s time for you to just move on so the rest of us can enjoy it.