The Diamondbacks lost again today, this time to the Cincinnati Reds . They have one win, five losses & four ties in their last 10 spring games. They’ve been outscored 58-35 during this stretch. The offense from the starters has been a problem over the last 6 games. Through the first 5 innings (when other teams starting pitchers and primary relievers are in the game), they’ve scored 2, 0, 0, 6, 1 and 1 runs and they’ve been outscored 20 to 10 in the first five innings of their last six games.
Madison Bumgarner got the start today in his final tuneup before the start of the regular season. While not yet announced, it’s certain he’ll be the opening day starter next Thursday in San Diego.
The game did not get off to a great start for Bumgarner. Jesse Winker mashed a center cut 89 MPH fastball, depositing a no doubter to right center field. He struck out the next 3 batters in order however to finish off the 1st inning. He then retired the side in order on 8 pitches in the 2nd and looked very sharp.
In the 3rd Madbum issued his first walk of spring to the number 8 hitter Jonathan India on 4 pitches. Wade Miley executed a sac bunt to get India over to 2nd. India stole 3rd despite a perfect throw from Carson Kelly because Eduardo Escobar was late covering. Winker hit a tapper in front of the plate and Kelly only had one play to first base, unable to catch the speedy India. Madbum then got Nick Castellanos swinging on a cutter to retire the side with his 5th K. There was no hard contact in the inning and through the first three innings Madbum needed just 37 pitches and “looked”, (ok sounded, radio only) sharp despite giving up a couple of runs..
But the 4th inning started off with back to back walks to Joey Votto and Eugenio Suarez. That would bite him, as with one out Alex Blandino lifted a bloop Texas league double into right that kicked off Christian Walker’s leg. That drove in Votto. Tyler Naquin then hit a sac fly to score Suarez. India followed with a double on a line drive to left scoring Blandino making it 5-1. It was a 30-pitch inning and showed what happens when Madbum doesn’t have his finest command.
He had a quick 5th, on 11 pitches, striking out Winker looking then getting Castellano to fly out to center. He then got Votto looking at a 3-2 cutter for his 7th strikeout in the game, 4th looking.
In the 6th Madbum got Suarez to ground out, but gave up a single to Tucker Barnhart ending his outing at 85 pitches. That runner later came in to score on a double allowed by Joe Mantiply. It felt like he pitched much better than his final line: 5.1 IP, 4H, 6ER, 3BB, 7K, 1 HR
After the game Bumgarner seemed please with his outing despite the 6 runs:
- “I feel ready for the season. I was glad to get up and down 6 times. I made some pretty good pitches today , so yeah, I feel pretty good about it. “
- He didn’t try any of the quick pitch antics he toyed with on the back fields the other day, but he did have one pitch he dropped down side arm throwing to Wade Miley. He described that rather humorously:
- “I did that to Wade Miley. Just a little friendly pitcher on pitcher, left on left thing, just playing around really”
Madison Bumgarner audio [or link]
On offense, Eduardo Escobar hit a long solo home-run to straight away center on a 3-0 fastball from Wade Miley in the 3rd inning. Other than that there was little offense until Josh Rojas took former D-back Braden Shipley deep for a two run homer in the 7th.
Alex Young pitched two scoreless innings, allowing two hits and striking out three and Yoan Lopez had a quick 3 up 3 down 9th on just 8 pitches.
Carson Kelly was removed from the game in the 6th after a ball in the dirt hit the “meaty part” of his right thumb. There was a cross up on the signs with a man on second. Carson went to block a curveball and got a fastball in the dirt that took off on him. Kelly wanted to stay in the game, but Torey wanted to be cautious. He was evaluated by the medical team and they say he’s fine. It was not clear whether he had an x-ray or not.
Torey also gave a heart felt message of consolation to the Bell family, after Mike Bell’s passing due to kidney cancer today. Heavy hearts today in the realm of MLB. Just 46 years old.