This was it. This was the nine game home stand the Arizona Diamondbacks and their fans wanted: nine games against teams that were between 12 and 15 games below .500, a chance for a huge 7-2 or 8-1 stretch that would finally, FINALLY spring this team into a 15 win in 19 game span, allowing them to play meaningful baseball games at the end of September. Instead, what we have gotten is what we have seen for most of this 2013 season. After seven games, the team is 3-4, doomed by everything that has plagued the D-Backs in 2013. In fact you know the drill, say it with me: no clutch hitting, spotty starting pitching and painful relief work.
D. Baxter can cheer all he wants. The D-Backs’ playoff hopes are on life support. Image: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
If the fat lady hasn’t started to sing yet, she surely is warming up her vocal chords. Arizona is now 69-67, 12 1/2 games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League West and seven games behind the Cincinnati Reds for the second wild-card. There are 26 games left in the season. Even if the D-Backs somehow win all seven remaining against the Dodgers, that still is a 5 1/2 game deficit with 19 to play. I know, being from New York, I shouldn’t say any race is over. After all, I witnessed first-hand the epic collapse of the 2007 New York Mets, in first place by 7 games with 17 left to play only to blow it and miss the playoffs completely. (Sorry Met friends, I had to bring it up as a frame of reference). The Dodgers will not be folding. Their misery was at the beginning of the season. As far as the Reds go, their schedule is a little difficult with seven games against the Pittsburgh Pirates and three each with the Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals. Still, all Cincy has to do is go 5-5 and force the D-Backs to go 10-0 in that same span and there still would be a two game difference. Does anyone see Arizona ripping off a ten game winning streak?
I don’t want to say Arizona is done. Doing in that in print instead of in the confines of my office and home leaves me open to much more ridicule in case the unlikely happens. However, I saw a heavy-set woman this morning board a plane bound for Phoenix. May it never reach its destination.