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Diamondbacks Gameday Thread, #32: 5/5 vs. Nationals

Home again, and hopefully a chance to make up ground in the division.

Kansas City Royals v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Alex Call - LF Josh Rojas - 3B
Luis Garcia - 2B Ketel Marte - 2B
Keibert Ruiz - C Corbin Carroll - DH
Joey Meneses - DH Christian Walker - 1B
Jeimer Candelario - 3B Pavin Smith - RF
Dominic Smith - 1B Dominic Fletcher - LF
Lane Thomas - RF Gabriel Moreno - C
CJ Abrams - SS Alek Thomas - CF
Victor Robles - CF Geraldo Perdomo - SS
Josiah Gray - RHP Merrill Kelly - RHP

The past week has likely been fairly kind to the D-backs’ chances of an unexpected appearance in the 2023 post-season. Yes, they lost the division lead to the suddenly unstoppable Dodgers, whose six-game winning streak is the best in the league. But most of the teams you’d consider as being in wild-card contention are on a bit of a losing streak. In the East, the Braves are six ahead, but the Mets, Marlins and Phillies have all lost their last three or more games. In the Central, the same goes for the top trio, the Pirates, Brewers and Cubs. In contrast, the West shows everyone with a winning streak of some kind. Hell, even the Rockies have won four straight, leaving the Cardinals with the worst record in the NL.

How this plays into the D-backs post-season chances depends on how you look at it, because there’s a very, very broad range of odds. Fangraphs shows us at 30.1%: that’s roughly double what it was on Opening Day, and we’re now projected for 82 wins, but it is still a win below the Giants, who have a 38.9% playoff shot. PECOTA is even less impressed, with Arizona expected to end at 80 wins, and a 15.2% shot, though that number has actually gone up from 11.6% a week ago. But if you want a shot of dopamine, head over to Baseball Reference. They have us at better than 2-1 on, 66.8%, 85.4 wins and a second-place finish. I will have a large glass of that Kool-Aid, thank you very much.

Winning this series will help. The Nationals had a bad start, but they have actually got a three-game winning streak under their belts, having taken the last three games of a four-game series at home against the Cubs. They held Chicago to ten runs across the whole set, though only scored eleven themselves. Good to see Corbin Carroll back in the line-up, even if only at DH. According to Jody Jackson, “he has a little fluid in the knee but there’s no procedure or concern. He’s been doing activities and expects to be back soon.” Torey Lovullo also said Zach Davies threw a 41-pitch bullpen, and will be heading to the Arizona Comple League to start his rehab outings.