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Snake Bytes, 8/4: Score early, score often

A five-run first was enough for the D-backs, even without ill manager Torey Lovullo

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San Francisco Giants v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images


[Arizona Sports] Peralta powers Narron-led D-backs past Giants, back into first - Paul Goldschmidt cracked his team-leading 24th home run of the season, and David Peralta continued his recent run of hot hitting with a single, double and homer of his own. He’s already picked up seven hits in nine at-bats to begin this series. Patrick Corbin struggled early, allowing three hits and a run in the first, then stumbling through a rough third that saw San Francisco plate another pair. But he ultimately settled in to strike out eight while giving Torey Lovullo’s group 6.0 innings.

[MLB] D-backs top Giants, pull into tie for NL West lead - When Corbin stepped to the plate with two outs and the bases loaded in the first inning, the D-backs led 3-1 and Stratton had a chance to limit the damage and wiggle out of the inning. It looked like he might just do that when he jumped ahead of Corbin 0-2, but Corbin was able to ground one back up the middle to score a pair and blow things open. “It’s a really good thing if you get to hit in the first,” Corbin said. “I fell behind 0-2 and was just trying to put the bat on the ball and hope for a good thing to happen.”

[AZ Central] Paul Goldschmidt’s 200th home run sparks Diamondbacks past Giants
- The tortured version of Goldschmidt – the one that surfaces when he is asked by reporters to talk about himself or his accomplishments – stood in front of his locker, doing his best to shrug off a career milestone. The scene was no different from any of the others that came before it in his career, except for a brief interplay involving teammate Steven Souza Jr. After Goldschmidt had answered a couple of questions, Souza, in an entirely sarcastic tone, called out from a few feet away, “Oh, whoopty doo, Goldy hit 200 homers,” drawing a laugh from reporters. Goldschmidt, in an entirely serious and not-at-all joking tone, replied, “Exactly,” nodding in approval.

Team news

[Arizona Sports] Facing a daunting September, D-backs need to get hot in August - To me, a major key in making the World Series will be avoiding the Wild Card game and trying to make the best seed possible. Every team has a reason to believe so any advantage has to be taken, such as home field in as many rounds as possible. A bad weekend could start off a bad month. A bad August could allow September to implode Arizona’s hope for going to the playoffs in back-to-back years for the first time since the glory days that started the century.

[AZ Central] Owings squeezed off roster, sent to minors - “C.O. was sort of in the spot where that was the move we had to make,” General Manager Mike Hazen said. “We feel like it’ll be beneficial for him to go down and get some more consistent at-bats. I wouldn’t anticipate this being a permanent direction for us,” Hazen said, referring to the short bench, “but this is what we’re doing for the time being.” In some ways, the move has seemed to be on the verge of happening for weeks. Owings was expected to be the club’s super utility player this season, but Steven Souza Jr.’s shoulder issue forced Owings into a semi-regular role in right field.

[MLB] D-backs option Owings to make room for Chafin - The D-backs could have chosen to option newly acquired right-hander, Matt Andriese, but instead now have 13 pitchers and three catchers on the roster, leaving manager Torey Lovullo with just two non-catchers on his bench each night. “I think it’s a two-part process,” Hazen said. “One is we were looking to keep the extra pitcher for right now. And C.O. was sort of in the spot where that was the move we had to make. We feel like it’ll be beneficial for him to go down and get some more consistent at-bats. He hasn’t played as much lately. We think that will help him when he comes back up to help us through the rest of the season.”

[Venom Strikes] Where Does Jake Lamb Go From Here? - We know he’s a more-than-capable power bat when healthy. But health has been something of an issue for him, though not always his fault. In any case, a change likely isn’t coming for the Arizona Diamondbacks at the hot corner anytime soon. Lamb is under team control for another two years. He’s a plus-power bat, when healthy. He’ll typically give you at least average defense at the position. He has his shortcomings against lefties, sure, but Torey Lovullo can work the matchups in that case. As such, this is a good time for Lamb to get healthy and bounce back in 2019

And, elsewhere

[Forbes] While Game Times Improved, Specter of Pitch Clock In MLB Still Looms - With Major League Baseball approaching the postseason (it starts with the National League Wild Card game on Tuesday, October 2nd on ESPN), the amount of time it takes for nine-innings of play to take place has dropped compared to last season. While the drop is welcome, it may not be enough to prevent efforts to put a pitch clock in place next season. According to the league, through August 1st, the average time for nine-innings is 3:00:07, that’s down from an average of 3:05:11 for the 2017 season.

[ESPN] Is positionless baseball MLB's next big thing? - Milwaukee has remained squarely in the National League Central race not because of its offense or starting rotation, but because of its defense and its bullpen. Milwaukee's 105 defensive runs (per Baseball Info Solutions) is 10 more than any other team, and its relievers rank seventh in win probability added.The Brewers have achieved this elite defensive standing as much through scheming, shifting and analysis about where players should stand as they have through individual play. Counsell moves players around like he's playing chess, and with all that, his defense has been better than anyone's.

[FTW] A cricket rule could help MLB shorten some games - In baseball terms, it’d mean something like this: If a visiting team is up by a certain number of runs — let’s say 5, just for the sake of it — entering the 9th inning, it can opt forgo the top half of the frame and bat only if the home team makes up the deficit in the inning. To do anything like it in Major League Baseball, you’d need to establish a firm minimum number of runs a team needs to be leading by to have the option, because just allowing any visiting team to secure last licks anytime it is in front in the 9th would eliminate most walk-off moments.