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Diamondbacks 2, Giants 3: Playing with Fire

The one where we turn off the lights at Chase

A picture of the interior of Chase Field during a power outage Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images

This afternoon, the Diamondbacks said farewell to Chase Field for the 2022 season. They went into the game looking for a couple key milestones. First, a win this afternoon would give them a winning record against the Giants for the first time since 2019, something they’ve struggled to do against any division rival for several years. Second, and much more importantly, they were 40-40 at home at first pitch, with a chance to getting a winning record at Chase. But neither were meant to be.

Drey Jameson took the mound for the Diamondbacks. His scoreless streak to start his career “only” lasted eight innings, ending in the second inning of his start against the Dodgers. Wouldn’t tell it to start today’s game, though. LeMonte Wade Jr. went down swinging on three pitches in the first at bat of the game and was quickly joined on the bench Thairo Estrada on the bench. Sadly, the dreams of a perfect game ended before they even began when Mike Yastrzemski drew a walk on a full count and one pitch later moved to second on a single from the bat of J.D. Davis. Jameson showed a lot of poise to end the inning, working around it, and getting Brandon Crawford to hit a line drive right to Alcantara and neutralize the threat.

Jameson had to work around another two out threat in the top of the second. He started off strong, with an popup to Hummel and his second strike out for out #2, but Austin Wynn smacked the first pitch he saw to left field for a single. Jameson then walked Ford Proctor (who is not to be confused with Ford Prefect of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy fame) with a pitch to again put runners on first and second with two outs. He worked around it again, though, getting Wade Jr. to make an out for the second time in the game. This time, it was a ground out to Walker.

The third inning was more of the same for Jameson. Like the first two innings, Estrada and Yastrzemski went down easily, this time on only five innings. In what was quickly becoming the theme of the game, he couldn’t get that third out, and instead, he gave up a double to J. D. Davis right over the third base bag, putting a runner in scoring position with two outs. Brandon Crawford became Jameson’s third strikeout of the game to end the inning without Jameson giving up a run.

Jameson finally got a much needed, kinda, sorta 1-2-3 inning in the fourth. David Villar worked the count full before grounding out to third baseman Josh Rojas. A hit-by-pitch put a runner on first, but Wynns grounded into a double play, letting Jameson get back to the dug out relatively stress-free.

Alas, Jameson went right back to it in the fifth inning. Proctor grounded out for the first out, and Jameson racked up his fourth K of the afternoon Wade Jr. at the plate for the second. For the fourth time in the game, he couldn’t seal the deal and walked Estrada on five pitches. For the fourth time, however, he got out of it, thanks to a fly out from Yastrzemski.

If it seems like I haven’t talked about the bottom halves of the inning, that’s because there really hasn’t been a whole lot to talk about. Jakob Junis took over in the second inning from opener Jarlin Garcia, and was making easy work of the Diamondbacks and giving them absolutely nothing to work with. Stone Garrett was hitting in the three hole today and doubled in his first at bat. It would be another ten batters before a Diamondback reached base again. Five of those outs were by the strikeout, including Junis striking out the side in the bottom of the fourth.

The tied finally turned in the fifth. Josh Rojas broke the streak in his second at-bat of the game, singling to right with no outs in the inning. He was swapped out for Sergio Alcantara on the basis of a fielder’s choice, but it didn’t really matter to Pavin Smith. The newly returned, first round pick doubled, and Alcantara was able to motor around the bases to score. One would have hoped to see the Diamondbacks accomplish a bit more, but Corbin Carroll grounded out, and Cooper Hummel struck out, limiting the offense to just the one run. 1-0 Diamondbacks

The offense waking up seemed to disrupt Drey Jameson. Despite his two out struggles, he had been doing quite well up to this point in the game, but the sixth inning turned out to be his kryptonite. A double from Davis and a single from Crawford put runners on the corners with nobody out. It was by far the biggest threat that Jameson had faced to this point, but he held it together well. He got his fifth strike out of the game on three swinging strikes for the first out, but Lovullo didn’t want to see anymore and went to Ginkel in the pen for the final two outs. Ginkel couldn’t have been much more efficiant getting those last two outs. He easily got a 4-6-3 double play, sitting the Giants down and keeping the lead intact.

That closed the book on Jameson’s start. His final line was 5.1 IP, 5 H, 3 BB, 5 K, and 0 runs. Not necessarily the start you might have wanted to see from a young rookie, but these days are going to happen. Sometimes, you just don’t have your A stuff. The big takeaway, in my opinion, was just how well he was able to work around the issues he did have. The key to success is being able to get results on the off days, and he did that admirably.

Ginkel went back out for the seventh, and was much more like the pitcher most of us have come to expect. An easy strike out of Wynns started the inning, but a walk, flyout, single, single loaded the bases with two outs. That forced Lovullo to make another move, taking Ginkel out in favor of Luis Frias. Much like Ginkel, Frias wasted no time. Davis lined out to Alcantra, who must have had a magnet in his glove the way the line drives were coming at him to day, for the third out, ending the threat without allowing a run to score.

Frias was also allowed to come back out for the next inning. Both Frias and catch Cooper Hummel struggled, giving the Giants yet another opportunity. Crawford singled and then went to second on Cooper Hummel’s first passed ball of the inning. Frias got a strike out of Villar but immediately followed it with a walk of Jason Vosler, putting runners on first and second with only one out. With Wilmer Flores batting, Hummel was responsible for another passed ball on a pitch that didn’t even touch the dirt, sending the runners to second and third. As frustrating as it was, it didn’t really matter, since Frias walked Flores and loaded the bases.

That was the day for Frias. He left, having only recorded the one out but loading the bases, and Reyes Moronta came in to try and bail him out. After playing with fire all day, the Diamondbacks finally got burned. Moronta faced off against pinch hitter Evan Longoria, who’s always enjoyed hitting at Chase. He has a batting average over .350, and he added to it today. A single brought in two runs and erased the slim lead the Diamondbacks had. Despite the opportunity, that was all the Giants would muster. A fly out for the second out, and a line out for the third sent the Giants back to defense. 2-1 Giants

In the bottom half of the inning, the Diamondbacks put together a two out threat, but not much came of it. Marte singled and Varsho walked. They then both stole third and second, respectively. Alek Thomas couldn’t make anything happen and grounded out to quietly end the inning.

The top of the ninth saw the Giants extend their lead. Mark Melancon was brought in to keep the deficit where he was, and in perhaps the least surprising outcome possible, failed to do so. J. D. Davis was the one to do the damage, hitting a solo home run with one out. That capped off a 4-for-5 day for him, three of those hits going for extra bases. Having met his quota of runs, Melancon got easily got two more outs to retire the side. 3-1 Giants

Christian Walker lead things off with a double, then went to third after Josh Rojas hit into a fielder’s choice. Alcantara walked, putting runners on the corners for Pavin Smith, possesor of the only Diamondback RBI up to that point. He got his pitch to hit, but just got a fraction of an inch underneath it, missing the home run. Walker was able to score, bringing the score to 3-2 Giants and Corbin Carroll at the plate. To make things more interesting, Alcantara stole second, putting the tying run in scoring position. But there was no repeat of the rookie walk off magic from the first Chase Field game of the season, for Corbin Carroll has struck out.

A graph showing the Win probability. Early parts of the game are in the middle, before the Diamondbacks jumped to 77%. After that, it became a rapid decline to the bottom line and a Giants win.

Samewise Gamgee: Drey Jameson, 17.4%

Gandalf: Kevin Ginkel, 14.2%

Sauron: Corbin Carroll, -26.2%

Saruman: Reyes Moronta, -21.3%

In the end, the usual suspects sank the Diamondback’s chances at a winning home record. The bullpen couldn’t hold it together, the offense waited too long to try and make a difference, and for the 83rd time this season, the Diamondbacks went home on the wrong side of the score.

Easy choice for COTD, and it goes to gzimmerm

Hi all - finally home from the hospital

Great news from Mr. gzimmerm, and we are all very happy that you were able to return home!

The Diamondbacks have a travel day tomorrow, as they begin their final road trip and last eight games of the season. They’ll start a two game series in Houston on Tuesday, 5:10 PM first pitch. I hope to see you then!