Although the Arizona Diamondbacks enter their upcoming series against the Los Angeles Dodgers six games out of the second Wild Card spot in the National League, manager Kirk Gibson still believes his team has a fighting chance as September rolls along.
With an upcoming eight-game home stand against three divisional foes -- Dodgers, Giants and Padres -- Gibson has faith his team can make a push similar to that of the 2011 World Champion St. Louis Cardinals.
"I think we are in a better position now than the Cardinals were last year at this time," Gibson said Tuesday on his weekly radio spot with Arizona Sports 620's Burns & Gambo. "Nobody thought they could do it, but that's why you play the games."
On this date a year ago, the eventual World Series champions were 79-67 and 4.5 games behind the Atlanta Braves. The Cardinals needed a win on the final night of the season along with a loss by the Braves just to secure their spot in the postseason.
Ironically, the team currently holding the second Wild Card spot are those same St. Louis Cardinals.
While many experts in Spring Training predicted the Diamondbacks would not only win the NL West but also contend for a spot in the Fall Classic, Gibson insists that now is not the time for his squad to concede what's left of the season.
"It is discouraging with this position we have put ourselves in," said Gibson. "But, there are great stories that happen every year in all kinds of different sports, why can't we be one of them?"
Of the final 21 games on their schedule, the Diamondbacks have 14 games at Chase Field and 18 within the division.
If they are to make a late-season surge, Gibson and Co. will have to leapfrog five teams to get to the second Wild Card spot.