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D-backs Preview #114: 8/10 @ Giants

The return of the Rojas!

San Francisco Giants v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Today's Lineups

Nick Ahmed - SS LaMonte Wade - RF
Ketel Marte - CF Brandon Belt - 1B
Kole Calhoun - RF Buster Posey - C
Carson Kelly - C Brandon Crawford - SS
Asdrubal Cabrera - 3B Kris Bryant - 3B
Pavin Smith - LF Mike Yastrzemski - CF
Christian Walker - 1B Alex Dickerson - LF
Josh Rojas - 2B Tommy La Stella - 2B
Zac Gallen - RHP Alex Wood - LHP

Roster move

The Arizona Diamondbacks made the following roster moves:

  • Reinstated INF/OF Josh Rojas from the 10-day injured list (left finger dislocation).
  • Optioned INF Jake Hager to Triple-A Reno following Sunday’s game.

After going 0-for-6 with two walks and three strikeouts in his first two rehab games for Reno, Rojas found his power stroke in the series finale, going 3-for-4 with a walk and a trio of home-runs. Seemed like a statement he was ready to return, though of course, the usual caution about Triple-A stats applies. He is, however, right back into the line-up tonight, for the opener of this two-game set against the Giants. We could certainly use him, his 114 OPS+ being the best of any qualifying Diamondbacks hitter. And even among the everyday ones who don’t qualify, that number is surpassed only by Carson Kelly and Ketel Marte. [LOL at Jake Faria’s 161 OPS+ being the top D-back, regardless of PAs]

29 strikeouts for the D-backs over the last two games in San Diego. Perhaps surprisingly, that’s not even a season high, as they had 14 and 16 on June 5-6 in Milwaukee. Over that four-game series they struck out 51 times. If the D-backs fan 12+ times tonight, it will be the first time they’ve done so in three consecutive games since May 2018. The all-time streak there came in September 2010, when they played series in Colorado and Cincinnati, and had SIX consecutive 12+ strikeout games, fanning a total of 76 times during that time. It’s perhaps not a surprise that the K-rate overall that year was a franchise record 24.7%. This season occupies second place though, at 24.0%

Torey Lovullo notes

  • Josh Rojas Return: He looked good to Torey before he went out on Rehab and he just needed to knock the rust off. They weren’t sure prior to Sunday’s 3 homer game if today would be the day, but clearly they’d seen enough to deem him ready to return. ”He went out and made a statement and told us he was ready”
  • Zac Gallen struggles vs. Giants. This will be the 4th time he’s faced the Giants this year, and 6th since last season. Familiarity may have something to do with how well the Giants have hit Zac. (6.04 ERA against Giants since 2020) But mostly it’s about location and execution, or “landing pitches inside the attack plan”.
  • Nick Ahmed Leading off vs. left hand starters: “He can impact the game with one swing of the bat... The numbers speak for themselves... it’s not a mystery... Sometimes guys have splits like that and I’m going to take advantage.”
  • Luke Weaver Rehab outing: Luke three IP, 48 pitches. He will pitch again on Friday. It was a very good outing. Weaver will get at least one more start before coming back to the MLB club. It could be more, but Torey confirmed at least one more for sure.
  • Caleb Smith will be removed from the rotation and sent to the bullpen. Due to the off day yesterday they might just skip his start and then figure it out the next time his turn comes up. They are still working on that.
  • Noe Ramirez has been cleared yesterday to resume all baseball activities and join teammates. He’s been on the Covid-IL. He will go to Salt River. There are still some internal protocols, but over the next 12-24 hours there should be activity updates.
  • Stuart Fairchild is tracking one day behind Noe.

Torey Lovullo audio [or link]