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Diamondbacks Gameday Thread, #128: 8/24 vs. Reds

Hopefully, it’ll go better than the series in Cincinnati...

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MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at Colorado Rockies Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Today's Lineups

TJ Friedl - CF Ketel Marte - 2B
Matt McLain - 2B Buddy Kennedy - DH
Elly De La Cruz - SS Tommy Pham - RF
Spencer Steer - LF Christian Walker - 1B
Nick Martini - DH Lourdes Gurriel - LF
Christian Encarnacion-Strand - 1B Evan Longoria - 3B
Noelvi Marte - 3B Corbin Carroll - CF
Will Benson - RF Nick Ahmed - SS
Tyler Stephenson - C Gabriel Moreno - C
B. Williamson - LHP Merrill Kelly - RHP

Ranking the Power Rankings

Bit delayed, what with an off-day and all. So bear in mind these were mostly from the start of the week, and may not take into account the two-game sweep of the Rangers, or in the case of ESPN even taking three of four in San Diego. Still, there’s no doubt that taking series from both the Rockies and Padres was a good sign that this team had turned things around. They’ll need to keep things going for the next three series, but they now only need to go 5-5 there to hit the 7-5 mark I wanted to see out of these four sets against winning teams. That’s for the future though. What of the recent past?

  • #17 (last week: #19)
  • CBS Sports: #15 (last week: #19) - “The ship seems to have been righted after a disastrous stretch that might cost them a playoff berth. They were the single worst team in baseball from July 1-Aug. 11. They’ve gone 7-2 since.”
  • USA Today: #15 (last week: #18) - “Followed up an ugly nine-game losing streak by winning seven of nine.”
  • Sports Illustrated: #12 (last week: #19) - “An early season favorite in our power rankings, the Diamondbacks have finally resurfaced. The Snakes were 16 games over .500 on July 1. A little over a week ago, they found themselves two games below .500, having lost nine straight. Over the last nine days though, Arizona has picked up the pace, winning seven of nine.”
  • ESPN: #18 (last week: #18) - “The D-backs have had a rough August, no doubt, but their struggles extend a little further than that. A 48-33 record in April, May and June has been followed by a 12-26 record in July and August. During the latter stretch, the D-backs have the fifth-lowest OPS and are scoring the second-fewest runs per game in the major leagues. Their relievers have a 6.18 ERA, the highest in the majors. The D-backs are somehow still in the thick of the wild-card picture, but each of their next five opponents — the Padres, Rangers, Reds, Dodgers and Orioles — are contenders, albeit to varying degrees. They need to get right fast.” Well, make that “the Padres, Rangers, Reds, Dodgers and Orioles”...

Improvement almost across the board, except for ESPN, with SI giving Arizona the biggest leap in the standings this week, shooting up seven places. The gap between them and the Padres has broadened significantly, and with the team now back hot on the heels of the Giants, I can imagine a scenario where the D-backs go back above them. That hasn’t been the case since July 24.

NL West average rankings

  1. Dodgers: 2.4
  2. Giants: 13.0
  3. D-backs: 15.4
  4. Padres: 19.6
  5. Rockies: 27.6