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D-backs Preview #126: 8/23 @ Pirates

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That #1 pick is looking less likely

2021 International Army Games: tank biathlon Photo by Sergei Fadeichev\TASS via Getty Images

Today's Lineups

DIAMONDBACKS PIRATES
Josh Rojas - 2B Ben Gamel - LF
Ketel Marte - CF Ke'Bryan Hayes - 3B
Asdrubal Cabrera - 3B Bryan Reynolds - CF
Carson Kelly - C Colin Moran - 1B
David Peralta - LF Jacob Stallings - C
Christian Walker - 1B Gregory Polanco - RF
Daulton Varsho - RF Michael Chavis - 2B
Nick Ahmed - SS Kevin Newman - SS
Humberto Mejia - RHP Wil Crowe - RHP

Roster moves

The Arizona Diamondbacks made the following roster moves:

  • Reinstated LHP Joe Mantiply from the injured list.
  • Recalled RHP Humberto Mejía from Triple-A Reno.
  • Optioned LHP Miguel Aguilar and INF Jake Hager to Reno following yesterday’s game.

How things change. The D-backs 17-game losing streak is no longer even the worst in the majors this season, thanks to the Orioles losing eighteen straight games, and counting. It’s already the worst run in the majors since the Royals lost 19 in a row in 2005, and Baltimore now has their own 21-game losing streak from 1988 in view. It’s the first time in over a century two teams have lost 17 or more in a row. You have to go back to 1906 to find the last time it happened, Impressively, both teams on that occasion came from the same city, and the streaks even overlapped. From May 1-24, the Boston Americans lost 20 in a row, and from May 17-June 8, the Boston Beaneaters were beaten in 19 consecutive games.

Needless to say, this stunning streak has pushed the Baltimore well clear at the top of the Tankapalooza standings. They now stand three games clear; quite a turnaround considering that after play on August 2, the Diamoncbacks were six up. But since then, Arizona is 9-9, while Baltimore are, of course, 0-18. The D-backs now sit just two ahead of the Rangers for second place, who are 4-13 over the same time-frame. A top four pick seems assured, but on recent form, it could well be that Arizona end up at the bottom of that range. Here are the current standings, going into play today:

  1. Baltimore Orioles 38-85
  2. Arizona Diamondbacks 42-83
  3. Texas Rangers 43-80
  4. Pittsburgh Pirates 44-80
  5. Miami Marlins 51-74

Torey Lovullo notes

  • Humberto Mejia promoted and making today’s start ”has power stuff, a 3 pitch mix”, (FB/CB/SLIDER). Checking in with James he says the FB velo has ticked up a bit from last year’s 92.8 to more like mid 93-94
  • Merrill Kelly should be out of isolation tomorrow and he’s feeling and looking great. But he will need time to build back up and he definitely won’t be activated before the end of this road trip.
  • Luke Weaver had to enter the 7 day close contact protocol on this past FRIDAY and is not eligible to activated before this coming Friday.
  • Kole Calhoun will begin outdoor running progression this week.
  • Caleb Smith’s sticky stuff suspension situation has no further update at this time. Torey’s taking it as no news is good news, but they just don’t know yet. Torey insisted it was residue, not buildup, of sweat, rosin and dirt.

Torey Lovullo audio [or link]