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Diamondbacks Gameday Thread, #147: 9/13 @ Mets

Zac Gallen seeks to follow up on his stellar start last time out.

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MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at Chicago Cubs Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Today's Lineups

Ketel Marte - 2B Brandon Nimmo - LF
Jordan Lawlar - SS Francisco Lindor - SS
Tommy Pham - RF Pete Alonso - 1B
Christian Walker - 1B DJ Stewart - RF
Lourdes Gurriel - LF Jeff McNeil - 2B
Evan Longoria - DH Rafael Ortega - CF
Emmanuel Rivera - 3B Mark Vientos - DH
Jake McCarthy - CF Brett Baty - 3B
Seby Zavala - C Omar Narvaez - C
Zac Gallen - RHP Joey Lucchesi - LHP

Ranking the power rankings

The D-backs followed up a bad week with a good one, winning series both at home against the Rockies, and a particularly impressive showing on the road versus wild-card rivals, the Cubs. Did them taking control of the third wild-card spot impress the national media and improve their standing? Let’s see:

  • #13 (last week: #13)
  • CBS Sports: #12 (last week: #14) - “Only 12 times in history has a player ever reached 25 homers and 50 stolen bases in the same season. None of them were rookies. D-Backs rookie Corbin Carroll has 24 homers and 47 steals.”
  • USA Today: #12 (last week: #13) - “Five upcoming games with Cubs, Giants may prove pivotal.”
  • Sports Illustrated: #10 (last week: #13) - “The Diamondbacks take three of four from the Cubs at Wrigley, moving them in front of the Cubbies in our power rankings. The two clubs will meet for a grudge match in the desert next weekend.”
  • ESPN: #14 (last week: #12) - Remember, this was before the team took three of four at Wrigley. “The D-backs have an important stretch coming up, with nine of their next 13 games coming against either the Cubs or the Giants, two teams joining them amid the crowded NL wild-card field. But the D-backs need to worry about getting right themselves. They followed a disappointing 8-16 month of July with a 12-15 August and have split their first six games of September. Since the All-Star break, they rank 21st in the majors in runs per game and 26th in ERA. That’s a pretty long stretch of time to be below average. But all that matters is the next 3½ weeks.”

So far so good, with the D-backs having gone 4-2 on the road, to now be 7-5 this month. They should certainly split these remaining two games in New York with Gallen and Merrill Kelly starting, but naturally, I’d like to see them take both. The main thing is simply to keep occupying the third wild-card spot. The more days get crossed off the calendar, the more difficult it becomes for the teams behind them, and the more the pressure will grow on them. Anyway, here are the average National West Power Rankings, with Arizona having edged up fractionally, improving their figure from 13.0 last week, to 12.2.

  1. Dodgers: 3.4
  2. D-backs: 12.2
  3. Giants: 16.4
  4. Padres: 19.6
  5. Rockies: 28.0