Record: 13-12, Streak: L1, Position: 1st in the NL West, .5G ahead of LAD
Tonight started when I realized I’d accidentally fed my dog (who is on a vet-mandated diet to lose 3 pounds) twice. So he was in a grand mood. Myself considerably less so. The game didn’t really help with that, but there were exciting moments!
|Bobby Witt - SS||Josh Rojas - 3B|
|Vinnie Pasquantino - 1B||Ketel Marte - 2B|
|Salvador Perez - C||Corbin Carroll - RF|
|Edward Olivares - LF||Christian Walker - 1B|
|Michael Massey - 2B||Lourdes Gurriel - LF|
|Franmil Reyes - DH||Pavin Smith - DH|
|Kyle Isbel - CF||Gabriel Moreno - C|
|Hunter Dozier - RF||Alek Thomas - CF|
|Nicky Lopez - 3B||Geraldo Perdomo - SS|
|Brady Singer - RHP||Ryne Nelson - RHP|
Ryne Nelson started the night with a whimper, taking 27 pitches to get through the first, allowing only one run to score (Olivares single to left) on three hits and no walks. So silver linings? The offense didn’t do him any favors, making easy three outs on 19 Brady Singer pitches.
Nelson was better in the second, using only 15 pitches, but he did allow two additional hits. Pavin did get another hit to put Arizona in that column, but Singer had no trouble retiring the rest of the lineup.
The third was less interesting, sort of. While two Royals did reach base (Pasquantino and Salvy), Nelson only needed 13 pitches to get all the outs this time. Progress. The lack of strikeouts helped. In the bottom of the inning, Thomas led off with a single, but no one after him could hit the ball with authority, so nothing came of it. On the plus side, Singer was up to 53 pitches, only two behind Nelson’s mark, so at least both pitchers were evening themselves out. 1-0 Kansas City
Unfortunately for Nelson, the defense didn’t show up for the fourth... Gurriel misplayed a liner to left (FOR THE SECOND TIME TONIGHT) and then Thomas and Marte both fumbled a Lopez ball hit to center which scored Hunter Dozier... Luckily, Nelson was better than his defenders and got three outs without any additional damage done.
Carroll started the Diamondbacks’ fourth with a triple to center and Walker quickly grounded out to second. Which was enough to score the speedy rookie. Gurriel quickly doubled to left as well! Sadly, Pavin couldn’t recreate his magic and Pasquantino stole a hit from Moreno to end the inning.
Meanwhile, in the fifth, Salvy singled and Olivares took advantage of Arizona’s lackadaisical defense to double to short center. Massey followed with a single to score Salvy and Reyes hit a sac fly to score Olivares... 4-1 Kansas City. Nelson and Marte secured the end to the inning with a groundout and footrace, but damage done... There’s nothing to discuss about the bottom of the inning sadly.
Ruiz came on in relief of Nelson for the sixth and suddenly the defense remembered how to play (Gurriel included!). His strikeout of Witt helped a lot. Carroll doubled after Marte grounded out, but Walker and Gurriel couldn’t convert it into another run.
Ruiz handled the seventh without issue as well! It’s nice to have some bullpen arms putting good appearances together! Old friend Taylor Clarke relieved Singer. Smith grounded out, but Moreno singled before Thomas and Perdomo walked to load the bases for Josh Rojas, who flew out to right, scoring Moreno and advancing Thomas to third. But Marte stuck out for the third time to end the threat... 4-2 Kansas City.
Misiewicz came on for the eighth. He gave up a single to Massey, but Reyes grounded into a double play before Isbel tripled to right. He scored on a Wild Pitch. Dozier was at bat for that run, and he walked on the next pitch. Luckily, Lopez made an immediate out at second.
Chapman next. Arizona’s eighth started very interestingly; Carroll singled on a grounder to first (he was totally out, but Chapman got winded on the play, so no challenge). Walker struck out swinging but Gurriel singled HARD to left. Then Carroll and Gurriel double stole before pinch-hitter (in lieu of Smith) Rivera grounded to short, eeking a horrible throw from Bobby Witt Jr, scoring both runners! It was at this point that Barlow replaced Chapman. Moreno and Thomas struck out... 5-4 Kansas City.
Ginkel got the ninth. Witt greeted him with a double to right center. Ginkel then got Pasquantino to fly out to left, but hit Salvy on the shoulder... Then got an inning ending double play, but nearly threw the ball into center field. So it was a fairly typical outing for him with better results.
Barlow stayed on the mound and Perdomo doubled to right center to start it off. Rojas grounded out, moving him to third. Marte barely waited for a pitch to come before popping out to shortstop. Carroll then walked and stole second during Walker’s at bat, but Walker grounded out to third, ending the game. 5-4 Kansas City Wins
Yuck. This game was decided by defense. Arizona’s didn’t show up until it had successfully sunk Nelson’s start (not that he did himself many favors, but he managed to damage as best he could). Whereas Kansas City’s defense got lucky and made some excellent plays on balls hit in their general direction (not you young phenom Witt). That’s the real story of the night. Two misplayed easy fly outs to Gurriel, Thomas and Marte bobbling a routine up the middle ball; these things don’t help against a team here to play Major League Baseball. It cost the good guys a Win.
Nifty silver lining in addition to only one walked given up by the staff, Corbin Carroll came a home run shy of the cycle today. Here I was texting ISH95 that the single would be the hardest hit for him to tally...
No Sedona Red comments tonight, so we’ll go with Jack’s lovely tidbit about Ruiz!
Zac Gallen (the only Zac G left standing) will take the Chase Field mound opposite Ryan Yarbrough at 12:40 local time. Will the streak continue? Will it end? Will the defense remember they are expected to catch the small red and white sphere? Only time will tell!