[AZ Central] Zac Gallen returns to form in win as DBacks maintain wild card lead - Gallen sounded hopeful he had identified a mechanical flaw that had been at least a contributing factor to struggles in recent weeks, including poor outings in back-to-back starts and four of his past five. He said his hand might have been getting “stuck behind” in his delivery, a timing thing that he thinks might have affected his command and life on certain pitches, including his fastball and curveball.
[Dbacks.com] Neither wind nor rain can stop D-backs in WC chase - It certainly wasn’t easy, though, as the Yankees’ grounds crew worked feverishly between innings to keep the field playable. “The conditions were very tough,” D-backs center fielder Alek Thomas said. “Very slippery, very wet. So you just have to play it any way you can. The wind was crazy as well, so the reads were pretty tough for the corner [outfield] guys. For us to come out on top, you know, is pretty huge. We're still trying to pull this thing off, so you just throw the rain out the window.”
[SI] Zac Gallen Masters Elements, Yankees in Diamondbacks 7-1 Win - Having grown up in New Jersey, Zac Gallen is no stranger to pitching in less than ideal elements. Coming out to the mound this afternoon in his short sleeved jersey he was completely unfazed by the heavy rain and wind brought on by Tropical Storm Ophelia. Asked if he had ever pitched in such tough conditions before, he said "Yeah, Growing up all the time . I wasn't too worried about it. You forget how nice that roof is in Arizona, and with sunshine every day. But yeah, I grew up playing in stuff like this all the time. It was bringing me back to when I was kid."
[SI] Gabriel Moreno Has Been Vital to Diamondbacks Success - There might be a team roster like personality-wise or his pitch-calling. However, he also tends to hit really well in wins. In the 58 wins that Moreno has been a part of, he's hit .339/.395/.469/.863 with 11 doubles, four home runs, a triple, 34 RBI, six stolen bases, 19 walks, and 40 strikeouts. Meanwhile, in the 45 losses he's been a part of, he's hit just .220/.254/.342/.595 with six doubles, three home runs, 12 RBI, six walks, and 30 strikeouts. So, when Moreno gets at least a hit and walk, a couple of hits, or a couple of walks, the team often wins.
[KGUN9] From pretender to contender, Arizona Diamondbacks cherishing opportunity to end postseason drought - Reliever Kevin Ginkel, who has been with the Diamondbacks his entire career, knows all about the grind. Over the last two seasons, Ginkel became manager Torey Lovello’s go-to bullpen arm in tight situations. Ginkel understands what it’s like to lose and is using this playoff race as a learning experience for the young players in the clubhouse. “I think for these young guys, I hope they understand and grasp that this is a rare opportunity,” Ginkel said. “There’s only so many times that maybe you go to the postseason.”
[SI] Phillies Should Want Arizona Diamondbacks in Wild Card Round - Arizona doesn't score a lot of runs. They're averaging roughly 4.64 runs per game, which is much lower than the Cubs' 5.10 runs per game. The Phillies' biggest issue right now is their pitching staff. The bullpen has given up late leads down the final stretch of the year and the starting rotation still doesn't look as dominant at the top end as last year. Facing the Diamondbacks, who don't have that high of an octane offense, should limit the damage that can be done against this unit.
[ESPN] Yankees miss playoffs for first time since 2016 - "It's not going to happen overnight," Judge said. "So we got to hit the ground running, especially when the season ends. We've got a lot to work on, a lot of things to change and a lot of stuff going on around here that needs to be fixed." Asked what some of those things were, Judge declined to answer, saying they'd stay "in-house." Sunday's loss also dropped the Yankees to 78-77, as they continue flirting with the possibility of being the first set of Bronx Bombers since 1992 to finish a season with a losing record.
[MLB.com] 8 key storylines to watch in season’s final week - Miguel Cabrera, mercifully, didn’t break his shin when he hit a ball off it last week, so we get a final week to say goodbye to the future Hall of Famer. Now that Wainwright has his 200th win, he’ll have a big fun sendoff at Busch Stadium over the final weekend … and he’s even going to sing. (And probably hit. He’s a former Silver Slugger, after all.) This is the last time to see both of those legends, but they’re only the ones we know about. Could this be the last time we see, say, Zack Greinke on a mound? How about Rich Hill? Even Joey Votto? These are players we have been watching for decades. This could be the last time we ever see them in a big league uniform. Cherish it. You know they will.
Mrs SnakePit and I went to the State Fair on Friday night. Here's our report.
What the fair entails has mutated over time, however. Its formal title includes the word “Exposition”, and this was originally a more significant element, as were the agricultural exhibits. The latter are still a factor, with things like quilting competitions, but you have to look quite hard for these. The great bulk of visitors these days are not there to learn about the latest innovations in farming, or to compete in the production of jams and jellies. They are there to enjoy the entertainment, ride the rides and eat ridiculously unhealthy food. Last year, close to 1.4 million people came through its gates during the 23 days it was open. That’s an awful lot of candy floss and violently disorienting carnival rides.