No one is less concerned about personal statistics than Paul Goldschmidt, as we have come to learn, but that has not stopped his bat from talking.
With a big finish, Goldschmidt can become the third player in the last four years to lead the National League in both home runs and RBIs. The Cardinals’ Albert Pujols did it in 2010, and the Dodgers’ Matt Kemp followed in 2011. The Brewers’ Ryan Braun was four RBIs short of the power double last season, but why did you have to bring him up, anyway?
Goldschmidt enters a three-game series against the Rockies at Chase Field that begins Friday with 109 RBIs after picking up two in the 4-1 victory over the Dodgers on Wednesday that prevented a sweep in Los Angeles.
Even though Goldschmidt is getting fewer pitches to hit and being walked more since the All-Star break, his 31 homers are one short of the 32 by the Pirates’ Pedro Alvarez for the league lead. Goldschmidt has gone a season-high 20 games and 75 at-bats without a homer since hitting a grand slam in Cincinnati on Aug. 20. A return to Chase Field could help, although Goldschmidt has been more proficient on the road, where he has 17 of 31 dingers.
The D-backs (73-72) have been unable to make up any ground on the Reds for the second NL wild-card spot, winning only three of 10 games in September, and they are now nine games back with 17 to play. And they now have another team to deal with, as the Nationals (76-69) ) have moved ahead of the D-backs and are 5 1/2 games back of the Reds.
Pitching matchups: Friday — RHP Tyler Chatwood (7-4, 3.17 ERA) vs. RHP Brandon McCarthy (4-9, 4.66). Saturday — RHP Chad Bettis (0-3, 5.02) vs. LHP Wade Miley (9-10, 3.73). Sunday — RHP Jhoulys Chacin (13-8, 3.09) vs. RHP Randall Delgado (4-6, 4.04)
Who’s hot for the Diamondbacks: Closer Brad Ziegler has retired the last 12 batters he has faced while recording three saves in four appearances. … Willie Bloomquist is 18 for 39 (.462) with four RBIs and four three-hit games in 12 games since returning from the disabled list on Aug. 28. … Gerardo Parra is 4 for 14 with two outfield assists and a sliding catch into the right-field fence in the last four games. … McCarthy has given up five runs in his last three starts, going 2-1 with a 1.88 ERA
Who’s not hot for the Diamondbacks: Wil Nieves, who has set a carer high with 10 doubles and is two hits short of tying his career high (58), has one hit in his last 16 at-bats. … Martin Prado has two hits in his last 26 at-bats. … Randall Delgado has given up six home runs in his last 46 2/3 innings after being touched for four in 2 2/3 innings Monday.
Who’s hot for the Rockies: NL batting leader Michael Cuddyer has 18 hits in his 38 September at-bats (.474) to vault ahead of the Braves’ Chris Johnson and the Nationals’ Jayson Werth for the league lead. Cuddyer, who has three homers and 12 RBIs in his run, is a candidate to play first base next season if Todd Helton retires, as many believe he will. … Chacin has quality starts in eight of his last 10 outings, and in another he gave up only three runs in 5 1/3 innings. He has not given up more than four runs in his last 17 starts. … Wilin Rosario has 15 hits in his last 42 at-bats, although he missed three games earlier this week with an infected wisdom tooth.
Who’s not hot for the Rockies: Troy Tulowitzki has five hits in his last 32 at-bats and is hitting .179 in September. … Todd Helton, who is on the verge of concluding a Hall of Fame career, has five hits in his last 30 at-bats. … Carlos Gonzalez is on the disabled list with a finger injury first incurred in a July 7 at-bat against Patrick Corbin. He was activated Sept. 3 but was to get a second opinion this weekend, and there is a good possibility he will not play again this season.
Notes, quotes, odds and ends: The D-backs have won eight of their 13 games against the Rockies this season, with another series remaining in Coors Field next weekend. … Wade Miley is 5-0 with a 2.52 ERA in eight games against the Rockies, and he will set a career high with 30 starts if he goes as scheduled Tuesday. He made 32 appearances last season, but the first three were out of the bullpen. … Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado, who made his major league debut at Chase Field on April 28, has had a strong rookie season, although the Rookie of the Year award will go to either Miami right-hander Jose Fernandez or Dodgers right fielder Yasiel Puig. Arenado is tied with the D-backs’ A.J. Pollock for the rookie lead with 26 doubles, and with 49 RBIs he is second to Atlanta’s Evan Gattis (55). Arenado’s WAR is 4.0, behind only Fernandez (6.3) and Puig (4.7) among rookies. … The Rockies have lost five of their last six games and seven of their last nine, all against the NL West. They are 26-49 on the road, and only the Marlins (23), Padres (25) and White Sox (25) have fewer road wins. … The Diamondbacks will miss left-hander Jorge De La Rosa, who has won his last six decisions over seven starts. … Chacin is 1-0 in two starts against the D-backs and is 4-2 with a 2.67 ERA in 12 appearances against them in his career.