Facing other playoff teams is not a good look for the Arizona Diamondbacks as they fall in the first game to the Chicago Cubs after dropping the series against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Deja vu anyone?
The Diamondbacks fell to the Cubs, 8-3 in the first game of the series.
Just like Thursday’s loss to the Dodgers, Taijuan Walker gave up three runs in the first inning. However, Walker did not settle down as quickly. He gave up another run in the second inning.
Through the first few innings, Walker struggled to find the strikezone. He threw 44 pitches outside of the zone and walked three batters.
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Down 4-0, the Diamondbacks did not rally until the fifth inning.
Catcher Chris Herrmann stole two base hits from Cubs’ starter Jon Lester. The second one was followed by a home run off the bat of David Peralta.
Peralta was batting .301 with 10 home runs and 37 RBI before tonight’s game. His two-run shot gives him 11 HR on the season.
Paul Goldschmidt’s bat proved his success against the Cubs is a trend. Despite going 0-for-2 in his first at-bats, Goldschmidt sent his 27th homer of the season over the wall in right field.
Goldschmidt now has four homers in his past seven at-bats against the Cubs.
The other similarity to Thursday’s loss, aside from giving up eight total runs, is a potential managerial mistake relating to the starting pitcher.
Through five innings, Taijuan Walker had thrown 100 pitches, but Lovullo allowed him to bat in the bottom of the fifth with one out and a runner on base.
It seems the intention was for Walker to lay down a sac-bunt to move Herrmann to second, but a pinch-hitter could have done the same. Walker struck out on a foul bunt.
Lovullo then allowed Walker to return to the mound. This is a curious decision after removing Anthony Banda in the fourth inning yesterday after he had only thrown 79 pitches.
Walker immediately gave up back-to-back homers to Kyle Schwarber and Alex Avila. He has now started six games since June 21 without a win.
The Diamondbacks will look to a struggling Patrick Corbin paired with a struggling offense to turn this series and the current three-game skid around.