What a game and what a win. One of the most entertaining D-backs games witnessed in 2022. Gallen v Verlander. Torey and Rojas ejected. A tie-game through 9 innings. A huge D-backs 3 run top of the 10th. A D-backs bullpen that sent out 3 relievers, giving up just 1 hit, 2 walks and allowing no runs. Melancon???? For the Save???? My God. What a game.
The D-backs did a good job of getting to Justin Verlander in the first with a small ball clinic coupled with Houston’s defensive miscues. Daulton Varsho doubled to the gap in right center to lead off the inning. Pavin Smith hit a slow roller to short to advance Varsho to third, which Astros shortstop Jeremy Peña bobbled to allow Smith to reach. With McCarthy up at the plate, catcher Martin Maldonado clanked a fastball for the D-backs first run while advancing Smith to 2nd. A bunt single, which withstood an Astros challenge, and a sacrifice fly by Christian Walker scored the second run of the inning.
Best catch I’ve seen on the infield all year as Geraldo Perdomo robs Aledmys Diaz of a possible double here. pic.twitter.com/OFqSPkmXQC— Michael McDermott (@MichaelMcDMLB) September 29, 2022
Gallen said. “I mean, that’s the guy that if you’re a pitcher. He’s a guy you’ve probably tried to emulate in some form or fashion. He’s one of the best to do it of all time so yeah, absolutely there was definitely a little extra heightened sense of awareness or sense of urgency, because I knew he was gonna be tough for our hitters. So I just tried to do my part to keep us in the game. It was fun to go out there and compete against him. I hadn’t gotten a chance to yet. So, it lived up to the expectation.”
Clearly frustrated, Rojas slammed the bat into the ground earning an automatic ejection from home plate umpire Alan Porter.
Josh Rojas and Torey Lovullo have been ejected by umpire Alan Porter. pic.twitter.com/n4DUe0v4mj— Bally Sports Arizona (@BALLYSPORTSAZ) September 29, 2022
“When you get those extra two runs, it changes the whole dynamic of that inning,” Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said. “It was a great moment for Christian. I know it was a tough night for him. He might have gotten rung up on some pitches that weren’t necessarily good pitches, but he erased that and came out and helped win us a baseball game.”
This is not what the Diamondbacks organization envisioned just prior to the season starting. President and CEO Derrick Hall, speaking with the Arizona Republic’s Nick Piecoro, projected attendance to reach 2,000,000 fans in 2022, with several caveats. But with 1,605,199 tickets sold the team fell almost 400,000 tickets short of that projection.
If you can’t be there in person, have no fear. Every second of the Qualifiers will be available to stream live and for free no matter where you’re located on WorldBaseballClassic.com. In addition, you’ll be able to watch on MLB.TV, MLB.com, the new World Baseball Classic YouTube channel, and the World Baseball Classic Facebook page.