The ride has just begun, but a seemingly wild one so far for the Arizona Diamondbacks. They started out in Los Angeles giving up 42 runs in four games, and dropping three of four. They went to San Diego and took two of three from the Padres, but lost Jake Lamb in the ninth inning of the final game.
Coming home to face the World Champion Boston Red Sox seemed daunting, but catching the Red Sox on a long road trip, and struggling, seemed like the best time to have them visit Phoenix. Turned out to be true, as the D-backs took two of three.
After taking the first two games, Merrill Kelly had a very good chance in helping the D-backs sweep the Boston Red Sox, but one pitch to Mitch Moreland in the seventh, ended up just over Adam Jones's outstretched glove and was the difference in a 1-0 loss.
The D-back offense was limited to just three hits after scoring over 61 runs the past nine games. Despite the loss, there was plenty of optimism in the D-back clubhouse. Manager Torey Lovullo said, "Kind of unfortunate day for Merrill Kelly. He gives us exactly what we needed, keeping them in check, but made two or three mistakes, one being the home run, but Merrill is going to continue to build on this outing."
Merrill Kelly said, “I was really excited about pitching against the Red Sox. In fact, I had this day circled on my calendar.” Kelly went eight innings allowing only the home run ball, on four hits, with nine strikeouts, and not one free pass. “I was happy with my performance today. The less pitches the better. I try to limit the pitches best I can I try to get ahead, and stay ahead and today I was able to do that,” added Kelly.
Jon Duplantier made his home debut and pitched the ninth. Impressively, he was able to get out of a bases loaded jam.
In regards to the lack of offense, Lovullo said, "We might have been thrown off by the bullpen day. We saw so many arms coming out of their bullpen and could never get into a rhythm." Boston used five pitchers in the game. Starter Hector Velazquez went the first three innings allowing only one hit. Brandon Workman threw the fourth, Marcus Walden took the fifth and sixth, giving up one hit. Matt Barnes handled the seventh and eighth, with Ryan Brasier allowing the third hit of the game, a two out double by David Peralta. "I know the guys will enjoy the day off, but we have to turn the page quickly and be ready for the Rangers," added Lovullo.
Arizona (5-5) will get a day off, but on Tuesday will face the Texas Rangers in a mini two game series. Meanwhile, the Red Sox (3-8) are headed home, and are more than happy to be heading that way.
Tuesday matchup against the Rangers is Zack Greinke (1-1) 9.31 ERA vs. Mike Minor (1-1) 4.63 ERA. Wednesday will feature Robbie Ray (0-1) 4.35 ERA vs. Lance Lynn (0-1) 6.39 ERA. Game times are at 6:40pm