PHOENIX, Ariz — That trade for J.D. Martinez just continues to pay off.
The Arizona oufielder broke a scoreless tie and triggered a four-run outburst in the sixth inning as the Diamondbacks knocked off the Chicago Cubs by a final of 6-2 in front of 42,219 very loud fans at Chase Field on Saturday night.
Martinez finished the game with two hits, a run and an RBI, including that double to get the scoring started. Patrick Corbin and Jon Lester had been dueling for awhile up to that point, putting a few runners on base but never actually allowing anyone to score.
The strong effort by Martinez wasn’t even the highlight of the night, though.
With the score 5-0 in the eighth, David Peralta drove the ball off the wall in left center, then came all the way around to score with an inside-the-park home run. It was the first of his career, and he was still catching his breath on the way back out to left field to start the ninth.
— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) August 13, 2017
On the mound, Corbin continued to pitch well at home, tossing 6.2 scoreless innings to notch his ninth win of the season. From there, Archie Bradley took over, keeping the shutout intact until the ninth.
Things got a little more interesting than they probably should have in the final frame when Fernando Rodney allowed the Cubs to string together four hits in a row, but Arizona ultimately escaped with the win.
With the victory Saturday, Arizona is now 2-3 at the midway point of this daunting 10-game stretch that pits the D-backs against Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston. With the Dodgers winning games at a historic pace, the Cubs finally starting to resemble the defending champs and the Astros sporting the best record in the American League, survival might just be the main objective for Torey Lovullo’s group. And they’re doing it so far.
–A.J. Pollock made a diving grab on an Anthony Rizzo liner to center that saved a run in the top of the third and kept the game scoreless.
–The Cubs nearly scored the game’s first run in the top of the fifth, but Ketel Marte threw Javier Baez out at home. Two batters later, Rizzo came within a few feet of a grand slam – but ultimately flew out to Martinez in right to end the inning.
–After Paul Goldschmidt was intentionally walked in the sixth, Martinez ripped a double off the right field wall to score the game’s first run.
–Goldschmidt scored one batter later when Baez threw high and wide of catcher Alex Avila while trying to get him out at home.
–Brandon Drury doubled home a pair of runs in the sixth, then made a nice over-the-shoulder catch on a Tommy La Stella’s pop up in the seventh.
–Peralta’s inside-the-park homerun was the 13th ever by a Diamondback, and second already this season. Marte had the other.
–The top half of the first was a lot more interesting than it needed to be. Rizzo grounded into a likely double play with one out, but Drury threw wide of second base, preventing Marte from being able to secure even one out on the play. Corbin induced another grounder from the next batter, but failed to cover first in time to complete the second potential double play of the inning.
–Arizona was unable to convert with runners on first and second and zero outs in the bottom of the first. Pollock grounded into a double play, then Goldschmidt struck out.
–The Diamondbacks put two on with just one out in the fourth as well, but once again couldn’t get anyone home.
–Rodney made things interesting in the ninth once again. After retiring the first two batters he saw, he proceeded to allow four consecutive hits – leading to Chicago’s two runs, while putting runners on the corners. David Hernandez had to come in and finish the game, and Andrew Chafin was warming up in the bullpen as well.
STAT OF THE GAME
2.86: Patrick Corbin’s ERA at Chase Field this season.
HE SAID IT
“When I saw the third base coach sending me home I’m like ‘oh, I was out of gas’. So I didn’t slide at home plate, I just let myself down. I was out of breath, but it was good. This feels good. I’ve never done it before, that was the first time. That was a pretty special moment for me.” – David Peralta, on his first career inside-the-park homerun
-The first 20,000 fans in attendance on Saturday received an Arizona Flag Cap.
-Sunday is the final day to try the Versus Dog at Chase Field this season. One half of the foot-long hot dog is covered in Arizona-style toppings, while the other is loaded with Chicago-style toppings.
These two clubs will meet again at Chase Field on Sunday afternoon. First pitch is set for 1:10, with pregame coverage beginning at 12:30 on 98.7 FM, Arizona’s Sports Station.
Zack Godley (5-4, 2.94) will take the mound for the D-backs, looking to continue his impressive 2017 campaign.
While his win-loss record is fairly pedestrian, his sub-3.00 ERA has been a pleasant surprise for Arizona – and a key component to the club’s success so far.
Godley is 2-0 with a 1.37 ERA in his last three starts overall, and 2-1 with a 3.22 ERA over seven home starts this year. He picked up a win over these Cubs in Chicago on Aug. 2, tossing six shutout innings.
In his career, Godley is 1-1 with a 5.59 ERA against the Cubs. He also played in their organization from 2013-14, before he was acquired in the trade that sent Miguel Montero to Chicago.
Meanwhile, the Cubs will counter with Jake Arrieta (11-8, 3,83). The 2015 Cy Young winner hasn’t been as dominant this season as he had been the previous three seasons, but he’s still dangerous. And he’s won three of his last four decisions, dating back to July 15. The one loss in that stretch came courtesy of a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Arizona on Aug. 2 though.