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Goldschmidt and Greinke do their thing, lead D-backs past Giants

Arizona Diamondbacks' Paul Goldschmidt, right, celebrates his three-run home run against the San Francisco Giants with A.J. Pollock (11) during the third inning of a baseball game Friday, Aug. 25, 2017, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

PHOENIX — It’s the start of Players Weekend in Major League Baseball, and the Arizona Diamondbacks are proudly wearing nicknames on the back of their jerseys all weekend long. So to kick off this joyous occasion, of course the D-backs sent Zack “Greinke” Greinke to the mound to face off against the San Francisco Giants.

The Giants’ game plan to blind Greinke and the D-backs with their uniforms that could be seen from outer space was unsuccessful as “Goldy,” “Freight Train,” and the crew put their solar eclipse glasses to use and took game one of the series by a score of 4-3.

Greinke — who has been outstanding at home in his 15 starts — continued to roll at Chase Field against the Giants. While he wasn’t as dominant as we’ve seen him be at times this season, he seemed to be back on track after experiencing his shortest outing of the season in his last start against the Minnesota Twins, where he only lasted four innings after allowing four earned runs in a loss.

Greinke had a few sequences where it seemed like Giants hitters were figuring him out in the second and fourth innings, but he was able to keep the damage minimal in both instances and only allowed two earned runs in those jams. He went 6.2 innings, giving up three earned runs total on seven hits. He only struck out four, but he also didn’t walk any batters. Despite not being overpowering, it was a good enough effort from Greinke to earn his 15th win of the season.

Ty Blach got the start for the Giants and held strong until the third inning when the D-backs ran up both the score and his pitch count. After giving up four earned runs in the inning, Blach sat down the next six batters he faced in a row before being pulled to start the sixth. He went 5.0 innings, giving up four earned by way of six hits. He struck out two and walked two.

Goldschmidt once again hit the ball very hard and allowed the D-backs to take an early lead on his 30th home run of the season that they never looked back from. Goldy went 2-for-4 on the night with three RBI, a single, and the HR. Chris “C.I.” Iannetta was also very good at the plate, going 2-for-3 with two singles and a walk.

The relief pitching combo of Jorge “George” De La Rosa, Archie “Hollywood” Bradley and Fernando “Benjamin” Rodney closed out the game and gave Arizona their 71st win of the season.

THE GOOD

– With his 30th home run in the third inning, Goldschmidt surpassed the 100 RBI mark and is currently at 101.
– Greinke is 12-1 at Chase Field this season in 15 home starts. His twelve wins at home leads all of Major League Baseball.
– Iannetta has now reached base safely in eight straight games.
– Rodney got his 31st save for Arizona, which puts him currently at fifth for the most saves in MLB this season.
– Archie Bradley’s beard.

THE BAD

– No matter the formula, the D-backs are still struggling with offensive production from the bottom half of the lineup. Even with J.D. Martinez hitting fifth, the 5-9 hitters were 0-for-15 tonight with three strikeouts and two walks. Martinez was 0-for-3 with a walk.
– Greinke continues to struggle to strike out batters as of late. This is his second consecutive game of having less than five Ks in a start. He’s had six starts this season where he has struck out less than five.
– Nick Ahmed’s player jersey — which read “Slick Nick” — gave him the appearance of being a real life Garbage Pail Kid.

STAT OF THE GAME

140 – The D-backs have now held onto a playoff spot for 140 days this season, which is currently the third longest streak in MLB.

HE SAID IT

Torey Lovullo on Zack Greinke’s night: “For me, it was all about Zack Greinke again. 6 2/3, just was making pitches all game. I think he wore down a little bit late in the game. We extended him a little bit. But I feel like had a play had been made in the seventh – a tough play – he would have given us seven complete innings and it would have been a great outing. It still was a great outing. Team won the ball game. It was one of those team moments, team wins, and I was very proud of these guys.”

NOTED

– Per Fangraphs.com, Paul Goldschmidt ranks second in the National League in WAR at 5.4, trailing only Anthony Rendon at 5.7.
– Goldschmidt is now just 11 hits shy of 1,000. He is currently at 989 after his two hits tonight.
– Starting with this game, the D-backs will play 25 consecutive games against the NL West, including seven crucial games against the Rockies.
– First pitch was at 6:40 p.m. with an outdoor temperature of 102 degrees and an indoor temp of 80.

UP NEXT

Taijuan “Tai Weezy” Walker will get the start in game two of this three game series. First pitch is scheduled for 5:10 p.m. with pregame coverage beginning 40 minutes earlier on 98.7 FM. Arizona’s Sports Station.

Walker is seeking his first win since June 21 against the Colorado Rockies. He is 6-7 this season with a 3.66 ERA. This will be Walker’s fifth career start against the Giants. He is 2-1 with a 3.75 ERA in four starts.

Opposing Walker will be Madison Bumgarner for the Giants, who is making his ninth start since returning to the rotation for San Francisco on July 15. Bumgarner is 3-5 this season with a 2.87 ERA. In his career against Arizona, he is 9-8 with a 2.58 ERA in 27 starts.

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