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Game Preview # 80: 6/24 vs Dodgers

Is this what mental toughness looks like?

“I watch them fight every day.” — Torey Lovullo
“I watch them fight every day.” — Torey Lovullo
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Yesterday, the Diamondbacks won.

They broke a six-game losing-streak. Was it a first step back towards contention? Always, that first step feels happy because it means progress.

“If I had one message I could say to this team it is, ‘Every time you take the field make a statement. Don’t just get by, make a statement.’” – Torey Lovullo, June 23 before the losing streak was broken.

Today, the Diamondbacks play the Dodgers.

When they take the field, what will the Diamondbacks say? I will listen. I hope to hear something like, “We play aggressive/exciting baseball; every step we fight toe-to-toe with the Dodgers.” No matter the result, I will hear their statement.

So far this season, the Dodgers have won five games out of seven against the D-backs, scoring twice as many runs (56 vs 26). If the Diamondbacks win today, the celebrations will be exponentially louder than yesterday!

Today, we will see two future Hall-of-Fame pitchers, Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw. Their last duel was April of 2017 at Dodgers stadium. Kershaw won. Who will win today?

Line-ups for June 24

Joc Pederson - 1B Adam Jones - RF
Alex Verdugo - CF Ketel Marte - 2B
Justin Turner - 3B Eduardo Escobar - 3B
Cody Bellinger - RF David Peralta - LF
Max Muncy - 2B Christian Walker - 1B
Chris Taylor - SS Nick Ahmed - SS
Kike Hernandez - LF Carson Kelly - C
Alex Barnes - C Tim Locastro - CF
Clayton Kershaw - SP Zack Greinke - SP

Today’s line-ups differ from a few weeks ago (June 5th).

Ketel Marte is back from his muscle cramp and today will play second base (like he did on June 5th). The biggest change is Adam Jones replaces Jarrod Dyson in the outfield.

Changes to the Dodger line-up are like musical chairs. Kike Hernandez plays left field, Joc Pederson shifts to first base, Max Muncy shifts to second base, Chris Taylor shifts to shortstop. Shortstop Corey Seager is out with a hamstring injury. Alex Barnes will catch instead of Will Smith.

On 5 June, David Peralta hit a walk-off RBI in the 11th inning to beat the Dodgers. Will history repeat?

Torey Lovullo’s briefing & notes courtesy of Jack Sommers.

  • Still no closer to determining who will start on Thursday. Torey said all candidates are “internal” and names that have crossed his desk are NOT anyone below AAA.
  • Zack Greinke is the same person every day, regardless of opponent.
  • Carson Kelly is picking up little things from Zack Greinke “in the heat of the battle” and developing their rapport. He’s handling increased playing time/workload well and the extra reps are helping his offensive approach.
  • Ketel Marte is in lineup today. Originally he was slated to play CF, but they changed the lineup to move him to 2B as they felt having less ground to cover would better insure no re-injury.