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Snake Bytes, 7/25: The Sheriff gets gunned down

Nobody is happy with last night’s display

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St. Louis Cardinals v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Spencer’s Internet this morning is about as effective as Andrew Chafin, so I’m standing in!


[SI] Andrew Chafin Blows Save in 9th, D-backs Lose 10-6 - Lovullo was questioned why he didn't go to the right hander Ginkel earlier to face Goldschmidt and Arenado. The manager insisted the matchup was the one he wanted because he felt like Chafin could get a ground ball to get them out of the inning. He also mentioned Goldschmidt's reverse splits this year. He's batting .266 with a .678 OPS vs. LHP this year, and .289 with an .888 OPS against RHP. But for his career Goldschmidt has a 1.023 OPS against lefties and .879 vs. righties. In short this questionable decision was made based on a small sample size of 104 plate appearances in 2023 over the larger career sample size.

[Arizona Sports] D-backs blow late lead to Cardinals as frustrations continue - “We did everything we could to get ourselves back into the game offensively with the big hit by Longo,” manager Torey Lovullo said postgame. “We didn’t execute on the mound, we didn’t throw strikes in some critical situations and we gave up some big hits in big moments. “Of course there’s some decision making that I made that I’ve got to evaluate and I will. I know there’s always the opportunity to second guess and think through things a little bit differently and look at it from different angles. … We’re all frustrated. We know what’s going on.”

[] D-backs allow 5 runs in 9th inning, lose 5th straight - “I wasn't executing pitches to the degree I was trying to,” Chafin said. “So I guess you just sum it up to poor execution in a nutshell. Going for too many punchouts, I think, and ended up walking guys, and we saw what happened. It's the [worst] possible time to implode like that. We had the team on the ropes and it was my job to shut it down, and I didn't get it done.” Chafin’s frustration was evident, as was Lovullo’s. The clubhouse was silent in the aftermath, some players sitting and staring into their lockers, still processing the game. “I think you can tell the mood is pretty somber,” veteran third baseman Evan Longoria said.

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks bullpen coughs up lead in ninth, drops fifth straight - “The challenge is, when things get bad like this, not to blame others, not to look at your teammates and start to single guys out or single groups out and say, ‘Well, I’m doing my job, so-and-so or these people aren’t doing their job,’” Longoria said. “That’s kind of the death spiral of a team. That’s the challenge right now is to not do that. Continue to put faith in and believe in the guys that are going to the plate in front and behind you and the guys that are going out on the mound. That’s really all you can do.”

Team News

[SI] Gabriel Moreno, Merrill Kelly, Drey Jameson Health Update - Drey Jameson, UCL Sprain, 60-Day IL Jameson received his third opinion and is still in the decision phase. The conservative approach is rest, and then come back out and throw and test it out. Lovullo talked mentioned Luke Weaver as a pitcher that opted for the conservative route and was just firing 97 MPH fastballs at them the other day and seems perfectly healthy. The other approach is of course surgery, and he's still mulling over both options. It becomes a question of timing. If Jameson has surgery now or three months from now he's missing 2024 either way. The cutoff point to make that decision might be as late as October before the recovery time would start to impact his availability for 2025. So it's conceivable Jameson could opt for rest and a throwing program in another couple of months and see where he stands.

[MLB Trade Rumors] Diamondbacks, Orioles Interested In Shohei Ohtani - Diamondbacks Mike Hazen recently stated that his club plans to “be aggressive, even ultra-aggressive,” at the deadline, but not “reckless”. On paper, trading multiple top-100 prospects for a rental player like Ohtani might be considered too big a risk, considering that Arizona’s payroll history doesn’t at all suggest the D’Backs are contenders to sign Ohtani in free agency this winter. Then again, Ohtani is such a special case that it might convince a front office (or, perhaps more importantly, an ownership group) to make an extra push. His two-way ability enhances a contender on both sides of the ball, and conceivably, the D’Backs and Orioles are both so deep in prospects that they’d still have a good crop of prospects.

[Arizona Sports] D-backs' Merrill Kelly to start Tuesday after IL stint with blood clot - Manager Torey Lovullo said Kelly is back at Chase Field with the team after hitting the 15-day IL on June 27 with a blood clot in his leg. Lovullo did not definitively announce Kelly as the starter because the team will still have to make a move to get him back on the active roster after Monday’s game. “He’s here, feeling great and was up to 85 pitches in his last outing,” Lovullo told reporters pregame. “We spoke for a brief minute and he is really excited to be here and be ready to go. … It’s (Ryne) Nelson, TBA and Zac (Gallen). There is a really strong possibility the TBA will be Merrill Kelly.”

And, elsewhere...

[CBS Sports] MLB trade deadline: Categorizing each team as a buyer, seller or something in between - The Aug. 1 Major League Baseball 2023 trade deadline is just around the bend, and that means teams are deep in trade discussions right now. Some are looking like obvious buyers — particularly in light of the expanded postseason field — and others are very much in seller territory. Arizona Diamondbacks - Status: Soft buyer. The D-Backs don’t really spend these days, which means they’re probably not going to trade many players who are cost-controlled and have long-term value. As such, they’ll probably do some bargain-bin shopping for relievers and maybe some back-end rotation help.

[Baseball America] Minor League Attendance Snaps Back To Pre-Pandemic Form - In 2022, the average team drew just 3,910 fans per game. If that was the new normal, it would mean that it had settled in at a level worse than what Minor League Baseball had seen in any year since the start of the 21st century. Now, a collective sigh of relief can be heard around the minors. Last year appears to be an aberration. This year looks a whole lot more like 2019 than it does 2022. As of July 23, MiLB teams were averaging 4,034 fans per team per game. It’s just seven fans per game fewer than teams drew in 2019 through July 23.

The Brain That Wouldn’t Die (1962)

Rating; C

Dir: Joseph Green
Star: Jason Evers, Virginia Leith, Anthony La Penna, Adele Lamont

One of the most famous entries in the “isolated brain” genre, albeit significantly due to its lampooning by MST3K. It’s an odd beast, at times surprisingly earnest and almost heart-felt, while at others it fully deserves critical evisceration, and then some. The medical practitioner at the centre is Dr. Bill Cortner (Evers), who has been secretly experimenting in the basement lab of his country house. While driving there with fiancée Jan Compton (Leith), they’re involved in a car accident, in which Jan is decapitated. He hurries to his facility, with her severed head wrapped in a sports coat. She is kept alive – becoming what MST3K called “Jan in a pan” – while Bill searches for a replacement body he can transplant onto her head.

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