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D-backs Preview #44: 5/19 @ Dodgers

Ketel returns to the D-backs - if not quite the starting line-up yet

Miami Marlins v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

DIAMONDBACKS DODGERS
Pavin Smith - 1B Mookie Betts - CF
Tim Locastro - CF Max Muncy - 1B
Josh Rojas - RF Justin Turner - 3B
Eduardo Escobar - 3B Yoshi Tsutsugo - LF
Andrew Young - 2B Chris Taylor - 2B
David Peralta - LF Gavin Lux - SS
Nick Ahmed - SS Matt Beaty - RF
Stephen Vogt - C Austin Barnes - C
Matt Peacock - RHP Clayton Kershaw - LHP

Roster moves

The Arizona Diamondbacks made the following roster moves:

  • Reinstated INF/OF Ketel Marte (right hamstring strain) from the 10-day injured list.
  • Following last night’s game, optioned OF Nick Heath to Triple-A Reno.

Some positive news on the health front, with Marte returning having missed 36 games since his last appearance on April 7. He had 12 hits in his first five appearances for Arizona, and even though he played just six times, only four position players have a higher bWAR than Marte for the year to date. And two of those are currently on the injured list (Kelly and Cabrera, with the other two being Rojas and Peralta). Obviously, we can’t expect him to keep hitting .462 forever, but he certainly should be an improvement over what we’ve been putting out in center. Even including Ketel’s hot (if brief) start, Arizona CF have a collective line of .239/.309/.352 for a .662 OPS - that’s 64 points below MLB average.

So it won’t take much for Marte to be an improvement on that. Now, we can’t expect too much from Ketel. He’s just one piece in the jigsaw, and there are still going to be eight other players (or nine tonight, since he’s on the bench), who need to play their part. But it’s just nice to see, after a couple of weeks where it seemed like every night brought more grim news, and another player going on the IL. It never seemed to be the crappy ones either. Wyatt Mathisen and his 25 OPS+? His health has apparently never been better. Kevin Ginkel and his 7.16 ERA after 21 appearances? Fit as a fiddle. But let’s just keep our fingers crossed for more news of the positive kind going forward.

Torey Lovullo notes

  • On Ketel Marte’s return: It was such a good moment to see him walk into the clubhouse doors, pass by my office and just give a big hug and tell him welcome. Great job in following the process and the protocols and believing in what we were trying to get to.

Ketel is on the bench tonight because he played two games in a row in Reno. Their medical team’s plan is to layer him in gradually in the initial days and work him up to full time play. So off the bench today, probably starting tomorrow it sounds like, and maybe starting 2 out of 3 games for the next week most likely.

  • Matt Peacock starting tonight and Merrill Kelly tomorrow allows them to give Kelly an extra day of rest. In the context of recent staff injuries and what Merrill went through last year they just wanted to give him the extra time off.
  • They have not yet decided the Colorado series starters.
  • Taylor Widener is a potential option for Sunday
  • Corbin Martin showed enough to Torey to get another start and he could start Sunday on normal rest as well, but nothing has been finalized.
  • Madison Bumgarner feels great, Torey spoke with him one on one today. He’ll throw a bullpen tomorrow. That would set him up to throw Saturday.
  • Seth Frankoff’s turn would come up Friday if he were to remain in rotation and keep his turn.
  • Riley Smith will be down in the bullpen tonight and it sounds like he will be working in relief going forward.
  • Asdrubal Cabrera has decided to take a conservative rehab route, so no surgery for him at this time, but there is no time table for his return. He will be assessed by the week.
  • Christian Walker is starting baseball activity, and it sounds like he may be the next one back after Widener.

Torey Lovullo Audio [or link]