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D-backs Preview #49: 5/25 vs. Giants

Hey, at least the D-backs didn’t lose yesterday... #ObviousJoke

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

Today's Lineups

Mike Yastrzemski - RF Ketel Marte - CF
Buster Posey - C Pavin Smith - 1B
Alex Dickerson - LF Eduardo Escobar - 3B
Brandon Belt - 1B David Peralta - LF
Evan Longoria - 3B Carson Kelly - C
Brandon Crawford - SS Josh Rojas - RF
Donovan Solano - 2B Nick Ahmed - SS
Steven Duggar - CF Andrew Young - 2B
Kevin Gausman - RHP Corbin Martin - RHP

The Diamondbacks have not lost more than eight games in a row since May 25-June 2, 2010, when they dropped ten in a row. But their current losing streak stands on the brink of surpassing that tonight. Arizona tied the worst run of last year on Sunday, with their eight consecutive loss, as Colorado walked them off. They also had three longer losing streaks in the 2004 season, of nine, eleven and a mind-numbing FOURTEEN defeats in a row. So, yeah, you’ll understand why the current run of futility is provoking more mild annoyance and disapproving sighs rather than world shattering trauma. But it would be nice for it to be over. Poor Torey did not look a happy camper over the weekend.


The Arizona Diamondbacks made the following roster moves since we last checked in:

  • Reinstated C Carson Kelly (left great toe tuft fracture) from the 10-day injured list.
  • Recalled RHP Jon Duplantier (No. 34) from Triple-A Reno.
  • Optioned C/OF Daulton Varsho to Triple-A Reno.
  • Placed RHP Taylor Widener (right groin strain) on the 10-day injured list, retro to May 24.

The return of Kelly, who has likely been the team’s MVP this year, is a good thing. However, it does appear Carson’s return is now due to the fractured toe in question being 100% better: it’s more to the point that he can play through it. We’ll see how that works out, The list of moves above would appear to include a rather obvious lesson on the potential dangers of a player coming from the injured list too quickly. But see below for more on Taylor Widener’s situation.

Kelly received a lot of hot cold contrast treatment to get as much movement in the toe and joint as possible. He went through a lot of tests, running, cutting, catching, hitting, etc. He won’t be using any special orthotic or protection except when hitting , using a small evo shield. The first couple of days it was very sore and difficult to put pressure on, it improved during the week, but it’s over the last couple of days that it’s felt “really good”, He got in some game action at the alt site and he feels like it’s good enough to let him do everything he needs to do out on the field.

That said, I asked him if how poorly the team is doing had any impact on how quickly he’s come back and if the team were doing better might he take more time. he said: “No, I think with this type of thing a lot of it is pain tolerance. We got it to the point where I can go out and perform and do everything I need to do. Regardless of how the team is doing I feel like this is a good time for me to come back and give it all for my team”

Carson Kelly audio [or link]

Torey Lovullo notes

  • Christian Walker has been on rehab assignment playing in each of the last two days. He played 5 innings yesterday and 6 innings today. He is 0-7 with a walk and K, but is asymptomatic and will play at least one more game before returning.
  • Asdrubal Cabrera and Kole Calhoun are both doing light running, forward movements and swinging in the cage
  • Chris Devenski has opted for elbow surgery due to ligament damage. Torey did not specify if it were Tommy John Surgery or not.
  • Taylor Widener did not reinjure the same muscle that he hurt last time. He tore muscles in a new area of the adductor , different from last time.
  • Jon Duplantier has been called up and will work out of the bullpen for now.
  • Daulton Varsho will both catch and play outfield while in Reno. There will not be an emphasis on either over the other

Player Development vs. Big League Club Needs

I asked Torey rather pointedly about the apparent prioritization of the big league club’s needs at the expense of the development of players like Dup and Varsho and what are the deliberations they go through. He gave a lengthy answer.

It’s a very valid question and a topic that comes up all the time. We are very sensitive to that portion of player development until he reaches his full potential. We just know that every once in a while there’s going to be things that intercept their development and that’s having them come here, plug in some value and for some needs that we have to help us win baseball games. For me really what it’s all about is winning baseball games. Period. That’s it.

But, we know when that development needs to continue so we’re mindful of that. and that’s what happened with Varsho and VanMeter and we know that it’s happened in the past with Jon Duplantier. An extra component to that is if we are hindering their development to a point where we are asking their body to do too much and the workload becomes too strenuous where they miss time because of an injury. That’s something that we’re also extremely mindful of.

In the case of pitching we know that it’s tough to go back and forth from a starter to a reliever more than once and we will add all those extra dynamic into what we need to help us win a baseball game at the big league level while never quite risking their development or their potential for an injury.

Torey Lovullo audio [or link]