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D-backs Preview #80: 6/28 @ Cardinals

Stab us once more in the heart, why don’t you? :(

St Louis Cardinals v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Josh Rojas - LF Dylan Carlson - CF
Tim Locastro - CF Paul Goldschmidt - 1B
Eduardo Escobar - 2B Nolan Arenado - 3B
Christian Walker - 1B Tyler O'Neill - LF
Asdrubal Cabrera - 3B Yadier Molina - C
Pavin Smith - RF Paul DeJong - SS
Nick Ahmed - SS Lars Nootbaar - RF
Daulton Varsho - C Edmundo Sosa - 2B
Jake Faria - RHP Wade LeBlanc - LHP

The Arizona Diamondbacks made the following roster moves:

  • Recalled RHP Humberto Castellanos from Triple-A Reno.
  • Placed OF/INF Ketel Marte on 10-day injured list (strained left hamstring), retro to June 27.

Yesterday marked the 19th loss for a Diamondbacks reliever this season, and we’re not even at the half-way point. The Arizona bullpen are well on pace to smash the previous team record of 35 relief losses, set in 2018. Of course, as starters go shorter, and bullpens longer, the number of decisions which relievers get is tending up. In both 2011 + 2012, there were only 37 bullpen decisions. In the last full season, 2019, there were 55, and there were 58 in that 2018 season, when our relievers went 23-35. This year is on pace for 56. Alex Young and Stefan Crichton have each been charged with four of the losses, with Joakim Soria getting three more L’s.

With Crichton off the 40-man roster, Young and Soria still have a shot at the franchise record for reliever losses. Now, if W/L record is flaky for a pitcher, it is perhaps more so for relievers. But the current record holders for the Diamondbacks, with 8 relief losses apiece, are Chad Qualls (2008) and Aaron Heilman (2010). Those are both names which have likely sent long-standing Diamondbacks fans, whimpering for their comfort blankets. There’s then four on seven: Brad Boxberger, Addison Reed, Oscar Villarreal and Yoan Lopez. What’s interesting is that two of those - Boxberger and Reed - were closers, and not unsuccessful, each notching over 30 saves. But Qualls is perhaps the oddity, going 4-8 despite an excellent 2.81 ERA.

Torey Lovullo notes

  • No audio today. Just me, frantically typing... :)
  • Ketel Marte. Torey doesn’t feel the team should have been more cautious with Ketel Marte. He praised the medical team and “in no way do I feel he was rushed”. This is a considerably less severe hamstring injury than the previous one, and will hopefully not require more than a couple of weeks out.
  • In center, it will be “an assortment of guys.” The team “feel very good about Pavin” [Smith], but he hasn’t figured out the details as yet. It’s a balance between offense and defense, but Smith has “had a very productive offensive year.”
  • Jake Feria will start today, and Caleb Smith tomorrow. “We’re trying to maximize our opportunities to go out and win baseball games.” This felt like a good opportunity for Jake to show us what he has got.
  • The bunts yesterday. “Good teams stay one step ahead of the other.” We’re not asking them to bunt, but it’s something we want them to be aware of the possibility.
  • Kole Calhoun is heading to Reno on a rehab assignment. J.B. Bukauskas will throw two innings there tomorrow. Taylor Widener is throwing today, but he hasn’t got the report yet. Tyler Clippard will throw live batting practice tomorrow. Carson Kelly has been catching at Salt River, but has not done anything that involves the wrist, e.g. throwing back