|Jon Jay - CF||Andrew McCutchen - RF|
|Eduardo Escobar - 3B||Austin Slater - 1B|
|David Peralta - LF||Evan Longoria - 3B|
|Paul Goldschmidt - 1B||Nick Hundley - C|
|Daniel Descalso - 2B||Hunter Pence - LF|
|Steven Souza - RF||Brandon Crawford - SS|
|Nick Ahmed - SS||Chase d'Arnaud - 2B|
|Alex Avila - C||Steven Duggar - CF|
|Patrick Corbin - LHP||Chris Stratton - RHP|
First of all, your guide to scoreboard watching this evening, though it’s a relatively light schedule, with most of the National League not playing. The Rockies are also in California, starting a three-game series against the Angels in Anaheim at 7pm, fifteen minutes before the D-backs’ game gets under way. At the fringe of the race, the Phillies are playing the Natonals in Philadelphia, and are currently losing 4-2. Since I know you’re interested, the Dodgers have the day off, before starting their series in Texas against the Rangers tomorrow night. So, a win tonight would increase the D-backs edge over them to a full three games.
Hopefully Mr. Corbin can deliver. At the risk of tempting fate, I’m going to point out that he has not allowed a home-run since June 16. That’s a streak of 11 straight starts without a home-run given up, which is tied for the most in franchise history. The other pitcher to go 11 in a row, probably surprisingly, is not Randy Johnson or (and this would have been my guess) Brandon Webb. It’s the poet, Miguel Batista, who had 11 homerless starts from August 22nd, 2002 through April 25 the following season. That ran only 61.2 innings, while Corbin’s run is 68.2. Webb, incidentally, had a 10-game streak covering 61.2 IP: again perhaps a surprise, it was not around his scoreless streak, but July 29-September 17, 2003.
That’s now 289 batters he has faced since Michael Conforto of the Mets went deep off Corbin, in the second inning at Chase Field on June 16. The recent record for homerless games belongs to Derek Lowe of the Red Sox and Tyson Ross of the Padres, both of whom went 16 starts without allowing a long-ball. Lowe’s was especially impressive, as it took him almost four years to complete. It started in 1998, but he then moved to the Boston bullpen, and spent almost all the next three seasons there, before going back to the rotation in 2002. Can’t be many people who have picked up 40 saves one season, then two years later, win 20 games as a starter...