D-Backs About to Step up a Notch in Competition



It is hard to believe that we are already 60 games into the 2012 season.  It seemed like yesterday that all of us at Venomstrikes.com were unified in picking the Diamondbacks to win the National League West.   At 30-30, it hasn’t quite worked out that way so far but at least now they are starting to show signs of why we liked them so much at the beginning of the season.  Having said that, they are now embarking on their toughest six game stretch of the entire 2012 campaign.  They will be playing the Rangers in Texas, perhaps the best team in baseball, followed by a trip to Los Angeles to face perhaps the hottest team in the game, the Angels.

What should Arizona expect on this trip?  These two teams are a far different animal than their fellow American League West squad, the A’s, whom the D-Backs just swept.  However, Texas has been struggling as of late, starting the month of June 4-6.  Tonight, the Snakes get Colby Lewis who lost to Oakland in his previous start.  Ian Kennedy takes the hill for Arizona coming off  a 12 strikout performance against the Rockies.   Texas in their ballpark is an extremely dangerous bunch, one that sends opposing pitchers’ ERA’s higher than one of those Six Flags rides near the stadium.  As for the Angels, they are 7-3 so far this month, including last night’s 3-2, come-from-behind victory over the Dodgers.  The Dodgers-Angels matchup is for LA bragging rights so when the D-Backs come to visit, the Angels may take a little bit of a breather.  That’s wishful thinking.  Los Angeles is trying to recoup as much ground on Texas as possible because of their poor start.  The Angels will not be friendly hosts this coming weekend.

The D-Backs are hot in their own right, riding a five game winning streak.  However, the expectations for these next six games should not be so inflated.  If they go 3-3, be thrilled.  A 2-4 record is not the worst thing in the world as when they return home, the Mariners and Cubs await them, a perfect opportunity for another 5-1 homestand.

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