Diamondbacks try to bounce back vs. hot Giants starter
SAN FRANCISCO — The Arizona Diamondbacks will put their first-place status in the National League West on the line Wednesday night when they wrap up a three-game series against the San Francisco Giants.
The Diamondbacks (72-60) have come up short in two low-scoring affairs, 2-0 and 1-0, in the first two games of the series to drop into a tie with the Colorado Rockies (72-60) atop the West.
Arizona has been atop the division or tied for the top spot every day since Aug. 7.
The two wins by the Giants (67-67), meanwhile, allowed them to trim two games off what was an eight-game deficit in the West, and 1 1/2 games off what was an eight-game deficit in the NL wild-card race.
Having already thrown two shutouts in the series and with eight wins in their last 10 games against Arizona, the Giants are scheduled to throw their hottest pitcher, rookie right-hander Dereck Rodriguez (6-1, 2.30), in an effort to creep even closer in both postseason chases.
Rodriguez hasn’t lost since June 9, a 13-game (12-start) run in which he’s gone 5-0 with a 1.82 ERA.
One of the wins during that stretch came in his only previous meeting with the Diamondbacks on June 30. He blanked Arizona that day, allowing six hits in 6 1/3 innings in a 7-0 win.
The Diamondbacks, scoreless in their last 23 innings against Giants pitching, have wasted brilliant efforts by starters Patrick Corbin and Clay Buchholz in the first two games of the series. Counting Zack Greinke’s outing Sunday against Seattle, Arizona has allowed just five runs in its last three games.
Seeking to end a run of four losses in their last five games, the Diamondbacks are slated to pitch left-hander Zack Godley (13-7, 4.59), who has been roughed up to the tune of 11 runs and 15 hits in 10 innings in his last two starts.
He pitched a gem in San Francisco on April 9, going seven shutout innings in a 2-1 win, but the Giants have gotten the better of him since, claiming 10-3 and 9-6 wins in June and July, respectively, as Godley has been tagged for 14 runs and 14 hits in just 7 1/3 innings.
The Giants might have to go Wednesday without one of their difference-makers during a four-game winning streak.
Outfielder Steven Duggar suffered what appeared to be a dislocated left shoulder when diving back into first base after drawing a one-out walk in the ninth inning.
Clearly in pain, Duggar stayed in the game and wound up scoring the winning run on Gorkys Hernandez’s walk-off single.
The Giants labeled the injury a bruise after the game and said Duggar would be re-evaluated before the series finale.
Duggar’s two-run single accounted for the only runs in Monday’s 2-0 win.
The Diamondbacks not only fell into a tie for the West lead by virtue of Tuesday’s loss, but also allowed the third-place Los Angeles Dodgers (71-61) to move within one game of the top spot.
Arizona visits Los Angeles for four games beginning Thursday night.