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Preview, #140: 9/6 vs. Braves

There’s a new D-back in town

Cincinnati Reds Photo Day Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Ronald Acuna - LF A.J. Pollock - CF
Ender Inciarte - CF Eduardo Escobar - 3B
Freddie Freeman - 1B Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
Nick Markakis - RF David Peralta - LF
Johan Camargo - 3B Steven Souza - RF
Kurt Suzuki - C Ketel Marte - 2B
Ozzie Albies - 2B Nick Ahmed - SS
Dansby Swanson - SS Jeff Mathis - C
Anibal Sanchez - RHP Zack Greinke - RHP

A bit of a surprise move for the D-backs, with the team picking up Patrick Kivlehan from the Mets, for cash. They immediately selected his contract from the Triple-A Reno Aces, with room on the 40-man roster being made by moving Jarrod Dyson there. Dyson is now officially out for the season, and will have surgery to “re-attach” things in his core abductor area, similar to the procedure he underwent at about this point last year, as a Mariner. According to Torey (his pre-game press conference is below), Jarrod was trying to “gut it out”, hoping to come back and help the team down the stretch, but had some swelling and inflammation. “It’s a huge miss for us,” said Lovullo.

So, the team got Kivlehan instead, He was drafted by the Mariners, traded to the Rangers, back to the Mariners, then picked up by the Padres, where he made his debut in 2016, before being waived and going to the Reds. He appeared in 116 games for them last season, mostly off the bench, hitting .208/.304/.399 for an 83 OPS+. He did play all three outfield positions and both corner infield spots, though according to Lovullo, won’t be asked to play 3B here. Torey called him extremely athletic, someone with a lot of pop, who can impact the game with one swing. He’ll be an extra bat against lefties on the bench, a bit like Christian Walker. And probably a forgotten answer on a future Sporcle about the 2018 D-backs...

Torey Lovullo’s pregame press conference as the #Dbacks open an important 4-game series against the visiting #Braves.

Posted by FOX Sports Arizona on Thursday, September 6, 2018

A tough series for the D-backs looms, as the suddenly resurgent Braves come to town, looking set for their first post-season appearance - indeed, first winning record - in five years. It’ll give us a chance to see some of the best young players around. Jack noticed that only one other team since the 19th century has had two players younger than 22 put up a season worth more than three bWAR, as Atlanta has had from Ronald Acuna and Ozzie Albies [The 1959 Giants had Orlando Cepeda and Willie McCovey]. At least there won’t be much need for scoreboard watching this one, as the Cubs are the only other NL playoff contenders in action, and their game will be close to over by the time this starts.