The Arizona Diamondbacks start the month of September with a series win
Reliever Daniel Hudson made it interesting in the ninth inning for the Arizona Diamondbacks, but a combined seven runs in the last three innings was enough to grab an 8-5 victory over the Rockies in front of 31,981 on Sunday afternoon at Coors Field.
The Diamondbacks, who are looking for their first winning month of the season, are off to a good start. Sunday’s game was the last meeting between the two N.L. West rivals in 2016 at Coors Field. Arizona claiming victory in six of the ten games played in Denver. The Rockies and Diamondbacks conclude their season series with three games in Chase Field from Sept. 12-14.
Chip Hale‘s ball club was trailing 2-1 after six innings, but a four run seventh capped by a Socrates Brito three-run homer woke up the offense. Coming into the inning, Diamondbacks’ hitters had managed just three hits off Gray. Here, they put together four quality at-bats in a row, and rewarded with four straight base knocks.
With one out, Jake Lamb singled on a line drive to right fielder Carlos Gonzalez. The next batter, Yasmany Tomas, advanced Lamb to second with a single. Tomas appeared to be hurt while running to first base, and was removed from the game. Hale said after the game that he was experienced dizziness. Tomas lobbied to stay in, but the trainers were not taking any chances.
The big blow courtesy of Brito followed. The Diamondbacks center-fielder was on Gray in his previous at-bats, and crushed a 98-mph fastball on the inner half over the wall in right-center field.
Fast forward to the top of the eighth. After Jean Segura flew out to right to start the inning, Chris Owings was hit by a Carlos Estevez fastball. With Paul Goldschmidt at the plate, Owings swiped second, his 16th stolen base of the season.
Goldschmidt struck out, but an intentional walk to Jake Lamb and another hit batter brought Brandon Drury to the plate.
Drury, who has been swinging a really hot bat lately, came through again with a line drive single to left. That scored Owings and Lamb and the Diamondbacks suddenly had a 7-3 lead. Brito would strike out with runners at second and third to end the frame.
After Patrick Corbin gave up a leadoff double to pinch hitter Christian Adames, Hudson came into the game looking to shut the door.
Instead, he made things harder than they had to be. After a wild pitch advanced Adames to third, Nick Hundley drove in Colorado’s fourth run.
Hudson then unloaded another wild pitch that allowed Hundley to come home. That made it a 8-5 game. Murphy advanced to third, and Tapia ended up at second.
Suddenly, D.J. LeMahieu represented the tying run at the plate. Hudson then struck out LeMahieu swinging and Carlos Gonzalez followed suit to end the game.
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When he talked about the ninth, Hale acknowledged the “Coors Field effect.”
“Whenever you come in here, you know it’s not going to be easy,” Hale said. “It’s never easy. A five-run lead is barely enough in this ballpark in the ninth inning.”
Diamondbacks’ starter Archie Bradley picked up his sixth win of the season. He battled for six innings, and gave up just two earned runs on six hits with six strikeouts.
Catcher Tuffy Gosewisch talked about his starter’s outing.
“He did a real good job of battling,” Gosewisch said. “The location was good on his fastball, moved it in and out on hitters and his curveball got better as the game went on.”
The Diamondbacks will conclude the road trip with a three game series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Diamondbacks are 5-7 against Los Angeles this season including 2-4 at Dodger Stadium. Paul Goldschmidt is a career .325 hitter versus the Dodgers (.337 in L.A.), and his 24 career home runs are the most among active players. Jake Lamb is hitting .359 in 12 games against the Dodgers this season.
The series begins Monday night at 5:10 MST. Zack Greinke will make his first start at Dodger Stadium since signing with Arizona on December 18, 2015. Greinke earned the win against Los Angeles at Chase Field on June 13. Greinke owns a lifetime 33-9 record in 67 games (66 starts) against the N.L. West.
Right-hander Kenta Maeda will make the start for L.A. He last pitched on August 29 at Coors Field. He allowed two runs on four hits in five innings. He is 5-1 over his last seven starts with a 3.72 ERA. In four starts against the Diamondbacks this season, Maeda is 1-1 with a 3.68 ERA (9 ER/22 IP).
The series in Dodger Stadium concludes with night games Tuesday and Wednesday nights.