Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Hold On 

The good news: Jose Cruz Jr. returns to the squad and in his first appearance back, draws four singles and a walk.

The so-so news: He does all this in the 6-spot in the order, which is not optimally useful, especially when the 7 and 8 hitters (Clayton and Snyder) are hitting .236 and .231, respectively.

The bad news: The Diamondbacks lose their third game in a row, 4-3 to the Nationals. That makes 10 straight losses to that club, a streak which is just sad.

The even-worse news: The Diamondbacks just aren't scoring any runs. Livan Hernandez gave up eight hits and six walks in his seven innings of work, and still the Diamondbacks couldn't put together more than 3 runs. It was another game remiscent of last year where we needed all three components (offense, starting pitching, and relief pitching) to do well and really only one of them -- starting pitching, in the form of Brandon Webb -- did.

And it makes you wonder whether the ejections of Gonzo and Melvin in the 5th inning arguing balls and strikes with one out and the bases loaded was just a one-off occurrence, or if it's a sign of something deeper.

We're certainly not dreaming about how pathetic the team has been thus far with the bases loaded -- the D-Backs are last in the NL with an abysmal .125 BA/.156 SLG with the bases loaded. The .47 runs/AB (not PA) is worst in the NL, too. The D-Backs are doing slightly better with runners in scoring position 10th in BA (.245) and 13th in SLG (.385), but clearly the team has had its troubles thus far clumping together its runs, even though they rank 2nd in the NL in plate appearances with runners in scoring position and 5th in plate appearances with the bases loaded. In other words, thus far Counsell and Gonzo have done their job, while Glaus and Green haven't quite. While getting ejected in the 5th inning of a close game was not the wisest of choices on Gonzo's part, I can understand his frustration.

I don't know if this will be an ongoing trend or if the team is just scuffling at the moment. The team had better hold on, though, for the next month as the city is distracted by the bright shiny bauble of the Suns' playoff run. Despite playing like crap over the past week or so, the D-Backs are still just 2 games behind the Dodgers and still has a winning record. Here's hoping there's still a reason for the fans to come back to the ballpark in June...

Comments: Post a Comment