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D-backs Preview #13: 4/15 @ Nationals

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Into the nation’s capital and we re-united with an old friend

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Line-ups

Today's Lineups

DIAMONDBACKS NATIONALS
Tim Locastro - CF Trea Turner - SS
Carson Kelly - C Juan Soto - RF
Eduardo Escobar - 2B Josh Bell - 1B
Asdrubal Cabrera - 3B Kyle Schwarber - LF
Nick Ahmed - SS Josh Harrison - 2B
Pavin Smith - RF Starlin Castro - 3B
Wyatt Mathisen - 1B Yan Gomes - C
Andrew Young - LF Patrick Corbin - LHP
Merrill Kelly - RHP Victor Robles - CF

Remember when the Diamondbacks moved Patrick Corbin to the bullpen? It was in 2016, after he had gone 4-12 with a 5.58 ERA. Whatever happened down there, it clearly did the trick to get Patrick back on the right track. Over the five seasons since then, only Zack Greinke and Gerrit Cole have made more starts than Corbin in the majors. One wonders if perhaps there’s a lesson to be learned there, for another left-hander, currently struggling in the Diamondbacks’ rotation... That said, after a good first season for the Nationals, Corbin’s form seems to have dipped. He had a 4.66 ERA over eleven starts last year, and got smacked around badly by the Dodgers in his first outing of 2021.

He’s also now entering the expensive phase of his contract: $24.4 million this year, and as high as $35.4 million in 2024. Obviously, it’s hard to say if the decline over a shortened season plus one start is a real thing. The good news for them is, Washington don’t have a lot of long term contracts outside of Corbin and Stephen Strasburg, though those two alone will combine for $70 million in 2024. Otherwise, the only guaranteed contracts beyond this season are Will Harris (remember him?) who gets $8 million next year, and a $11.5 million mutual option on Kyle Schwarber, Even if Corbin turns out to be a lemon, it shouldn’t impact Washington’s future plans too much.

Torey Lovullo notes

Asdrubal Cabrera: Torey praised his leadership, “helping our culture breath every single day”. He’s provided good defense on the corners and quality patient at bats. They have a GAMEPLAN [Drink!] to protect him and preserve him for the long season and give him more days off. They’ve needed him to play a bit more than comfort level due to injuries, first to Ahmed then Walker.

Lineup: On the options in left when sitting Peralta to protect him against a lefty Torey’s choices were Andrew Young or Wyatt Mathisen. He went with Young as he’s had more innings in the outfield. (His other choice would have been Mathisen in left, Cabrera at 1st, Young at 2nd and Escobar at 3rd) Mathisen may still play some outfield later on, but while he has a choice between the two he feels more comfortable with Young in left.

Carson Kelly is batting second to give him as many at bats as possible.

Their plan was to give Kole Calhoun two days in a row off, combining the natural off day with a game off day. It was either going to be yesterday and today or Sunday and Monday, so they chose today. he’s doing fine, no issues. He could have started today if needed and is available off the bench.

Ketel Marte is still getting treatment and the staff has been initiating some “light movements forward”. He’s doing more than just getting the treatment, he’s up and on his feet. But still no baseball activities and Torey doesn’t know when or what next steps are in the current progression between now and baseball activities. Sounds a ways off.

Joakim Soria has been throwing on flat ground. Will throw a bullpen on Saturday

Tyler Clippard is still in a no throw situation, no change or update

Christian Walker is still getting treatment. Has not swung a bat or resumed baseball activities. They anticipate that will happen fairly soon in his case.

Nick Ahmed has been taking very slow walks off the field after making an out. He previously said that jogging slowly was painful. Torey has noticed this and he’s fine with Nick protecting his knee. Torey did not feel like the knee injury was contributing to his slow start at the late. “I trust that he’s telling me that he feels good, he’s never lied to me before. “

Dave McKay: His recovery from broken rib and ruptured spleen has been difficult and painful. ”His insides are not functioning the way that they’re supposed to. One thing had been leading to another where there was a lot of discomfort and a lot of pain that he was dealing with, but he’s improving day by day. When we see him at the ballpark is still unknown. We’re in constant communication with him and his spirits are high. He’s just a little frustrated that he slipped and fell. “

Asked if the complications were serious Torey responded “No...what’s serious, I think we’ve gotta define that. Serious enough that he’s gotta miss some time and he’s probably a little confused why he’s not getting better........ He wants to get back here as soon as possible. .......the aches and pains, the broken rib, the inability to take deep breaths and have typical Dave days haven’t happened in a while. I know that’s frustrating for him”

Asked if there were any emergency situations Torey stammered a bit and finally said “I don’t think so, there hasn’t been an emergency situation but there’s been considerable pain”

Torey Lovullo audio [or link]