Alright. Full honesty. I waited to even start the intro until the bottom of the ninth. The early game yesterday and knowing MadBum would be pitching kept me from trying to forecast beforehand. But I’m glad I waited! This game turned out to be one of the most solid (if weird) games of the year.
Keep reading for a play-by-play recap of what happened. Good scoring plays are in all caps.
|Daulton Varsho - DH||Mookie Betts - RF|
|Corbin Carroll - LF||Trea Turner - SS|
|Jake McCarthy - RF||Freddie Freeman - 1B|
|Christian Walker - 1B||Justin Turner - DH|
|Emmanuel Rivera - 3B||Chris Taylor - 2B|
|Sergio Alcantara - 2B||Trayce Thompson - CF|
|Carson Kelly - C||Austin Barnes - C|
|Alek Thomas - CF||Miguel Vargas - LF|
|Geraldo Perdomo - SS||Hanser Alberto - 3B|
|M. Bumgarner - LHP||Dustin May - RHP|
Varsho started the game by working a 7-pitch walk. Carroll struck out swinging, but Varsho stole second (12) trade offs. McCarthy didn’t get the memo of a long, drawn out at bat, popping out to right on pitch number two; it was too shallow for Varsho to advance on Betts’ arm. Walker worked a wonderful at bat (May isn’t looking super good tonight). It ended with a broken bat bloop single to left juuuuuuust out of Turner’s reach which SCORED VARSHO! Rivera also missed the memo about working a good at bat, grounding out on the first pitch.
Not only did the Snakes score a run in the first, they made May throw 22 pitches (truly important since he’s on a strict pitch count in his return from TJS).
Betts flew out to center to start the bottom of the first. Beardless Turner flew out to left (Carroll didn’t get a good read on the ball off the bat from the look of it, but that speed made up for it). Freeman finished the inning off with a ground out to second.
Pitch Count: May - 22 MadBum - 10
Alcantara saw 6 pitches and punched one the other way against the shift for a single. However, Kelly struck out on a nasty curve. Thomas shattered his bat in a good mimic of Walker, but the ball was on the ground. Right at shortstop. Alcantara thrown out at second, Thomas safe at first. Perdomo grounded out to May on the first pitch. Not great, but it was also a fairly impressive play by May.
Turner of the red beard popped out to center. Then Taylor followed suit. MadBum struck Thompson out swinging to end the inning.
Pitch Count: May - 36 MadBum - 23
Varsho struck out swinging, Carroll grounded out to first (nearly beating it out). I needed to make a caffeine run to the neighboring bodega, so I missed all of those two at bats except the out at first. McCarthy then worked a very nice walk, avoiding terrifying curveballs galore. McCarthy then stole second (19) on the first pitch to Walker. He then singled to left, SCORING MCCARTHY! Rivera wanted to join the hit parade as well, singling to right. Alcantara grounded out to end the inning though.
Another quick inning for MadBum: Barnes lined out to second, Vargas flew out to right, and Alberto grounded out to second. It took 7 pitches.
Pitch Count: May - 59 MadBum - 29
Kelly hit a single up the middle that Thompson played on a slide for some weird reason, kicking the ball away from both fielders in the area; Carson took second - catcher speed is legendary (and extremely noticeable on this team). Thomas popped out to short. Perdomo poked a single to left, Kelly to third (again, catcher speed people, catcher speed). May then loaded the bases by hitting Varsho. CORBIN CARROLL WITH A THREE RUN DOUBLE! McCarthy struck out swinging. Walker then grounded out to first.
Betts greeted MadBum with a long at bat resulting in a solo homer. Beardless Turner grounded out to third. MadBum then struck Freeman out swinging. Redbeard flew out to right.
Pitch Count: May 79 - MadBum - 53
Martin replaced May on the mound. Rivera wasted no time flying out to right. Alcantara made up for that with a nice walk. During Kelly’s at bat, Alcantara took second on a wild pitch, but Kelly struck out again. Thomas then grounded out to second (AGAIN WITH THE GROUND BALLS), ending the inning.
Taylor struck out swinging. But Thompson walked. Then Barnes struck out as well. Vargas then popped out to catcher twice (Kelly narrowly missed the first).
Pitch Count: Martin - 15 MadBum - 74
Vesia pitching now. Perdomo flew out to deep center. Varsho did the same but this time toward left instead of right. Carroll then ended the inning by popping out to third.
Alberto flew out to center. Betts struck out looking. Beardless Turner grounded out to third. Another efficient and commanding inning for Bum.
Pitch Count: Vesia - 11 MadBum - 84
Kahnle pitching now. This really turned into a Dodger bullpen game. McCarthy led off with a walk. Walker then had a swinging bunt to move him to second. A wild pitch during Rivera’s at bat got McCarthy to third. Rivera then flew out to shallow left and MCCARTHY BEAT THE THROW HOME! Speed. It’s the name of the game now. Alcantara struck out swinging in a thoroughly uncompetitive at bat.
A long at bat from Freeman to lead off. But luckily he flew out to center. Redbeard struck out swinging. Taylor ended the inning with a high hop ground out to second.
Pitch Count: Kahnle - 17 Ginkel - 16
Ferguson now on the mound. Kelly grounded out on a swinging bunt. Then Thomas grounded out AGAIN. He nearly beat the throw this time, but couldn’t quite make it. And Perdomo struck out looking to end the inning.
Kennedy on for the D’Backs. He started off by striking Thompson out swinging. And he followed that up by walking Barnes... Vargas smoked a ball to short, but Perdomo reached up and nabbed it. Nice play. Alberto ended the inning by grounding out to short.
Pitch Count: Ferguson - 10 Kennedy - 19
Bruihl in for the Dodgers. Varsho grounded out to second. Carroll then flew out to deep left and nearly confused Vargas out there. Alas he did not. McCarthy also quickly grounded out to second.
Oh god. Oh please no. Guess who....? He’s here. Melancon took the mound in a non-save situation. Betts grounded out to short. Turner grounded slowly to third and with his speed, there was no play at first. Freeman singled to right. Redbeard ended the night by grounding into a double play to Walker (Perdomo and then Melancon)!
Pitch Count: Bruihl - 5 Melancon - 17
6-1 ARIZONA WINS!
This game was surprisingly good! We played an all around excellent game. The offense was a tad light, but the guys made up for it in the margins, stealing bases, taking the extra opportunity wherever they could find it. And it paid off! MadBum looked like should have been in KC wearing orange and black again. Carroll keeps adding to his infant legacy. Varsho and McCarthy are always fun to watch. And even Carson Kelly was fun to watch on the bases (although much more because of the drastic difference in his speed compared to the other guys).
The dream of a .500 or better season is technically still alive!
Earth: Madison Bumgarner (21.7% WPA) - the unmovable mountain tonight
Wind: Corbin Carroll (7% WPA) - blowing in the wind and around the bases
Fire: Daulton Varsho (4.5% WPA) - it’s a toss up for me whether Varsho or Rojas is more the fire of this team, but tonight it’s an easy answer; Rojas warmed the bench, Varsho didn’t
Water: Christian Walker (18.3% WPA) - the flood of hits just keeps coming for America’s Next First Baseman
No Sedona Red tonight (166 comments at time of writing). Some lively discussion of Perdomo’s future with the club though.
Another late game tomorrow. First pitch at 7:10pm Arizona Time. Zac Gallen will take on Julio Urias in the final game of the 2022 Dodgers Series(es). This game looks to be a phenomenal one to catch.
The Diamondbacks will have the opportunity to win this horrid 5-game series in LA. Raise your hand if you thought that was possible 4 days ago!