Taylor Clarke opened the bullpen game for Arizona, allowing one run (without a home run) in his three innings of work. Matt Andriese followed, providing the same results. Arizona’s offense struggled to get anything at all going until the fifth, when they scored two. Then, Jake Lamb put the Diamondbacks ahead with a monster three-run home run in the eighth. Archie Bradley continued to successfully audition for the role of 2019 closer, securing Arizona’s 83rd victory of the season, meaning they are now assured of exceeding their 2018 victory total by at least one game.
Having lost so many players that were a big part of the team’s 2018 success, many had guarded expectations for the Diamondbacks. On Friday night, Jake Lamb’s eighth inning, three-run blast helped ensure that the Diamondbacks will exceed the 2018 team in wins, giving the Diamondbacks their third winning season in a row for the second time in franchise history.
Taijuan Walker will pitch one inning to open the season’s final game on Sunday. The appearance will be Walker’s first since he was lost to Tommy John surgery back on April 14, 2018.
In August, the Diamondbacks moved catching prospect to center field to continue letting his bat develop and to see what his great athleticism could do in the position. The Diamondbacks’ minor league player of the year did not disappoint and now is adding important positional flexibility to his resume, helping move him closer to his MLB debut.
Adam Jones knows his best years are behind him. He still hopes to return in 2020, feeling he has plenty to offer as a veteran presence and a back-up corner outfielder.
Despite some concerns with the turf in Chase Field, the Diamondbacks have no intention of moving Ketel Marte out from center field and back to the infield. This is not terribly surprising, given the MVP-caliber season (7.1 bWAR, 6.7fWAR) that Marte just put together.
The Dodgers making it to the World Series again last season may well have saved Dave Roberts’ job. If they fail to win it this season, it is fair to wonder if that failure just might cost him his job, despite a 100+ win season.
The season-ending injury to Christian Yelich has greatly benefitted Cody Bellinger in his quest for NL MVP, but there are still plenty of arguments to be made either way.
It is stories like this that make me so happy that Mike Hazen is at the helm in Arizona
Just as October 2018 sunk Craig Kimbrel’s free agent aspirations, a strong October 2019 could lift these free agents into bigger paydays come November.
Old friend alert: Daniel Hudson