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Preview, #110: 8/2, vs. Giants

The NL pitcher of the month takes the mound for Arizona, as they open a series against San Francisco.

Arizona Diamondbacks v San Diego Padres Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Andrew McCutchen - RF David Peralta - LF
Buster Posey - C Eduardo Escobar - 3B
Evan Longoria - 3B Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
Brandon Crawford - SS A.J. Pollock - CF
Gorkys Hernandez - LF Steven Souza - RF
Joe Panik - 2B Nick Ahmed - SS
Austin Slater - 1B Ketel Marte - 2B
Steven Duggar - CF Jeff Mathis - C
M. Bumgarner - LHP Zack Greinke - RHP

Zack Greinke hasn’t lost any of his last eight starts. If he avoids the L again tonight, the streak will begin to reach some relatively rarefied air, entering the twenty longest in Diamondbacks history. Patrick Corbin went nine in a row, overlapping the end of last season and the beginning of this one, while Greinke himself reached double digits, going 10 in a row between May and August in 2016. But the longest in recent history was Robbie Ray, who was undefeated for 16 starts in a row, from July 28 last year through June 27 this season. You might be surprised by who holds the all-time record though. I’ll save that for the final paragraph, I think...

A clue: it was not Randy Johnson, Curt Schilling or Brandon Webb. Though the Big Unit did have a streak of 13 consecutive games in 1999-2000 which is very comparable in terms of ERA to Greinke’s current run. Johnson’s ERA was 1.55; Greinke’s is 1.53. Though there are two ways in which Randy’s run was particularly impressive. Firstly, he averaged better than eight innings per start over that time; there were six complete games in those 13 outings [Compare: the D-backs have managed six complete games since contest #56 in 2014, Josh Collmenter’s imperfecto]. Secondly, he averaged 11.8 strikeouts per nine innings, fanning 137 batters. His LOW for a game was seven.

The all-time leader for consecutive starts without a loss for the Diamondbacks is... Brian Anderson. He went 19 undefeated in a row from July 24, 1999 to June 2, 2000. He had ten wins and nine no-decisions, despite a rather mediocre ERA of 3.24 over that time. Tied for second, on 17 games, are Patrick Corbin and Armando Reynoso. Then you have Robbie Ray’s 16-game streak discussed above, before we finally get down to one of the “big three”, with Brandon Webb’s 14-game streak in 2007-08. Curt Schilling’s high was only ten games, though he did that twice, separated by one start. Put another way, he had a 21-game streak, over which time he went 16-1.