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Series Preview #42: Diamondbacks @ Brewers

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I’ve heard it always looks like that in the North East, but you might not want to quote me on that

MLB: Cincinnati Reds at Milwaukee Brewers Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The Diamondbacks make their way to a land of Beer and Cheese for a three game set against the Milwuakee Cheating, Lying Scumbags Brewers. Going into the weekend, the Diamondbacks are a solid five games back of a Wild Card spot, and these same Brewers are one of the teams standing in their way.

Game 1: Merrill Kelly (9-12, 4.63 ERA, 1.32 WHIP) vs. Jordan Lyles (7-8, 4.96 ERA, 1.42WHIP)

Last time out, Kelly broke out of a rough stretch of four games where he had gone 1-3 with a 10.71 ERA by throwing five and two third innings of one run ball against the Giants. Hopefully, this marks a return to form for the “rookie” who has had a very up and down season in his first year in the Big Leagues.

Lyles came to the Brewers from Pittsburgh at the trade deadline and has had one good, one bad, and one mediocre start since. His last start was the bad one, giving up seven hits, two walks, and five earned runs in just four innings. He got the no-decision, however, as the game ended up going the Brewers’ way after a 14 inning, 15-14 slug fest in our nation’s capitol. As a former Pirate, I would recommend all Diamondbacks hitters take their at-bats in full plate armor.

Game 2: Zac Gallen (2-3, 2.45 ERA, 1.32 WHIP) vs. Chase Anderson (5-3, 4. 54 ERA, 1.28 WHIP)

I’m not sure Gallen has ever not pitched from the stretch in his time with the Diamondbacks. Since The Trade, he has given up 15 hits and 10 walks. That works out to a .379 OBP along with a cool .385 BABIP. All that, and he has only allowed three runs since putting on Sedona Red. To sum up how simultaneously lucky and unlucky he has been, if he bought a Powerball ticket, he would win, but as he was going to his car to claim his winnings, a UFO piloted by Elvis would land on him and crush him.

Chase Anderson used to be a Diamondback, and he seems to hold a grudge about that. According to MLB.com, he is 3-1 with a 2.10 ERA in five starts against Arizona. That’s just a wee bit better than his career norms. However, this might be the best time we could catch him, as he is coming off a real stinker of a start where he gave up TEN earned runs in just two and a third innings against the Nationals earlier this week

Game 3: Alex Young? (5-3, 4.04 ERA, 1.14 WHIP) Robbie Ray (10-7, 3.99 ERA, 1.28 WHIP)vs. Zach Davies (8-6, 3.74 ERA, 1.38 WHIP)

Both MLB and ESPN list the Diamondbacks’ starter for this game as TBD, but it seems to me like this game should be Alex Young’s next start. After a great few games to start his MLB career, Young has settled into more what you would expect from a rookie with only a couple months under his belt. He’s good for about five innings, four runs given up. Nothing spectacular, but not an automatic loss either.

LOLJK, like Guru says in the comments, it’s probably going to be Robbie Ray coming back from the IL to start this game. The thing to look for here will instead be whether the time on the bench derailed his steady trajectory he had been on, or if he will continue to put up the consistent numbers he had been putting up for a couple of months.

This will only be Davies’ second start since coming off the IL list, also for back spasms. His last start was good, giving up only two runs in five innings. However, he was limited to just 75 pitches, as it was his first start back without any rehab before hand. He should be back to full power for this start

Conclusion

Look, I’m not going to sugar coat it. The season is probably over. At this point, a playoff spot would more than likely require a season ending stretch that’s worthy of a 30-for-30 later on down the road. Anything less than a sweep of the Brewers, another team still sort of hanging on at the fringe of contention, probably means even that is out of the question. And that is something this team just hasn’t been able to do this season. I’m not holding my breath, and since they won the last series, that means they probably lose two games this time around. Hope I’m wrong. I’m not holding my breath.

I look forward to the article at the end of the season where Jim uses that last paragraph to make fun of me as we’re celebrating the Diamondbacks beating the Dodgers in the NLDS.