Merrill Kelly prevailed over Anthony DeSclafini in a classic pitchers duel tonight. Kelly shutout the Reds for 7 innings, on just 3 hits, 2 walks, and 5 strikeouts. He had to work out of a couple of jams in the 1st and the 5th, but other than that was virtually flawless.
DeSclafini matched him inning for inning, allowing just 1 run on 1 hit, a Nick Ahmed triple. He didn’t walk a batter and struck out 5. He needed just 78 pitches, as an aggressive Dbacks lineup was ineffective and unable to extend many at bats at all.
DeSclafini actually had a slightly higher game score for this game than Kelly, 76 to 74. But they were both excellent. Both lineups were aggressive and the pitchers took advantage of it with good command on the corners, inducing weak contact. Notably, there were only Four balls hit over 100 MPH exit velocity in this game, and three of those were outs.
The lone run scored in the 3rd inning, when Nick Ahmed chopped the first pitch he saw over the head of Suarez into the left field corner and hustled all the way to 3rd for a triple. On the very next pitch Jarrod Dyson hit a sac fly to center. Two pitches, one run, and a lead that would have to stand up all night.
Kevin Ginkel worked a 7 pitch 8th, and Archie Bradley had a 1-2-3 9th for a drama-less save.
Despite just the 1 hit and 1 run, the victory snapped a 5 game losing streak for the Dbacks, who remain 4 1⁄2 games back of the Cubs in the Wild Card, and are 5 back in the loss column. This is only the 2nd time in Franchise history the team has won a game when only recording 1 hit. The other was May 14th, 2011 vs. the Dodgers, (also a 1-0 victory)
Back by popular demand, here is the scorecard version with commentary of the game:
TOP 1. Merrill Kelly Pitching
Josh Van Meter: F-8. (Can ‘O’ Corn)
Joey Votto: Single (Broken bat flair into shallow RCF)
Eugenio Suarez: Single (Sharp ground ball through the hole into left, Votto to 2nd)
Aristedes Aquino: F-8 (Deep fly to RCF, Marte and Dyson Converge but KMVP makes the play, Votto to 3rd)
Tucker Barnhart: 4-3
Good job by Kelly stranding the two baserunners. 16 pitch inning, 10 for strikes
Bottom-1, Anthony Desclafani Pitching
Ildemaro Vargas: 4-3
Ketel Marte : 3-1
Eduardo Escobar: F-8, first pitch hacking
That was a 10 pitch inning for the Reds starter as DBacks go quickly and quietly in the first.
Freddy Galvis: BB (7 pitch walk, Caught Stealing, 1-6. Kelly stepped off, spun & threw him out.
Jose Peraza: L-4. (Soft liner to Vargas behind the bag at 2nd)
Michael Lorenzen: F-9: (Backed up Dyson to track in front of pool but Zoombiya got there)
12 Pitch inning for Kelly, hastened by the CS
Christian Walker: F-9 (2ndpitch of AB)
Josh Rojas: K (rung up looking at an inside corner strike)
Carson Kelly: K (also rung up on a fastball on outside corner)
6 up 6 down through two for the DBacks. Desclafani has thrown just 23 pitches
DeSclafani: K (Swinging)
VanMeter: F-8 (Made Kelly work, fouling off pitches, but flew out to Shallow CF on 8thpitch)
Votto: 6-3 (Helps Kelly out by swinging at 1stpitch)
Kelly has held Reds scoreless through 3 on 42 pitches
Nick Ahmed: 3b : High chopper over head of Suarez, rolled slowly up LF line, Nick Hustles all the way in to 3rd!
This Nick Ahmed triple led to a Dyson sac fly and the D-backs have the lead! pic.twitter.com/BFbZ1RcPy2— FOX Sports Arizona (@FOXSPORTSAZ) September 15, 2019
Jarrod Dyson: Sac F-8 (Deep fly gets the run home, Ahmed Tags
DBacks grab the 1-0 lead despite DeSclafini only needing 8 pitches to get through the inning
Suarez: F-9. (1pitch 1 out)
Aquino: Pop 6 (Jammed inside with a fastball)
Barnhart: K (Swinging on a good curveball on 6thpitch of at bat)
Kelly has retired 8 straight and 10 of last 11
DeSclafini has retired 6 straight and thrown just 44 pitches through 4
Galvis : BB (2ndwalk of the game for Galvis, who came in with 26 walks in 586 PA, 4.4% )
Low & Away Pickoff throw gets past Walker, Galvis to 2nd, Error on Kelly. Mound Visit by Mike Butcher
Peraza: Pop 7: (Rojas late break on shallow pop to left, almost collided with Ahmed)
Lorenzen: 6-3. (Nice backhand scoop by Walker on low throw from Ahmed)
DeSclafini: K (Got the call on a low curve)
Kelly another good job stranding the runner at 2nd
Rojas: 4-3 (1stPitch hack)
Dbacks aggressive approach not working against DeSclafini who has retired 9 straight and given up just 1 hit, 1 run, on 53 pitches through 5
VanMeter: K (looking at cutter on outside corner)
Kelly just 80 pitches through 6 IP, protecting a 1-0 lead nicely. But a big of huffing and puffing the last couple of batters. Somebody kick the bat rack!
Dyson: 3U (Soft grounder to Votto)
Vargas: K looking
12 Diamondbacks in a row set down by DeSclafini.
Aquino: Single (Sharp line drive to center)
Barnhart: 3-6-1 (Walker ranges right and makes nice submarine throw, Kelly hustles over to cover first…good play all around)
Galvis: Swung at a 2-1 Change and his knee/Ankle buckled and had to come out of game. Alex Blandino comes in to finish the at bat with a 2-2 count: K Swinging
Kelly Has a 3 hit shutout through 7 innings. He’s thrown 91 pitches
Escobar: K looking
Notice how little commentary for the at bats in the middle of the DBacks order? It’s no coincidence. They are sleeping through ineffective at bats. Not making DeSclafini work at all. Really disappointing.
T-8. Kevin Ginkel on to Relieve
Peraza: F-7. (1 pitch, 1 out)
Brian O’Grady pinch hitting for DeSclafani: K Swinging at slider down and away
7 pitch inning for Ginkel. I hope he comes back out for the 9th.
Rojas: F-8, not quite warning track
T-9. Archie Bradley in to close
VanMeter: F-8 (Deep fly to track, Marte hauls it in)
Votto: K (Swinging at a changeup , great pitch !)
Spotless 9thfor Archie Bradley to get the save and preserve the 1-0 victory. I need to learn to trust.
Merrill Kelly. +.461, Archie Bradley + .162, Kevin Ginkel +.120, Nick Ahmed +.086
Negative WPA: Everyone else, but Ketel Marte -.055 and Josh Rojas -.051 the worst.
Roll Call: 13 members showed up for 180 comments
Not red, but COTN for Rockstarr12, who obviously enjoyed this game
Series Finale is tomorrow at 1:10 P.M. , Zac Gallen will face off against former Dbacks Trevor Bauer.