The most amazing thing to me about the Diamondbacks being in first place is that they are doing it with just one of their starting pitchers having a winning record. I wouldn’t be surprised if they are the the first team to hold that distinction this far into a season.
Patrick Corbin is 9-0 and the Diamondbacks have won every one of his starts except one. The rest of the starters are a combined 12-22.
Ian Kennedy is 3-4, Trevor Cahill is 3-8, Brandon McCarthy is 2-4 and Wade Miley is 4-6.
How a team can be in first place with four of their starters having losing records is beyond me. Yes, the Diamondbacks are good in one-run games and extra innings. But still, the numbers are mind-boggling. Take the other two division leaders in the National League. The Atlanta Braves have three of their starters with a winning record.
Mike Minor is 8-2, Julio Teheran is 5-3 and Paul Maholm is 7-5.
And in St. Louis none of their five main starters (the pitchers who have accumulated the most starts) have a losing record.
Shelby Miller is 8-4, Adam Wainwright is 10-3, Lance Lynn is 9-1, Jaime Garcia, who is out for the season, is 5-2 and Jake Westbrook is 2-2.
Other factors play a key role in winning a division — mainly offense, defense and having a good bullpen. But Arizona has had a shaky bullpen most of the year and several of their key offensive players — like Miguel Montero, Cody Ross, Martin Prado and Jason Kubel — aren’t producing.
Throw in the injuries to Aaron Hill, Daniel Hudson, Eric Chavez and Adam Eaton, and it’s hard to fathom that Arizona is atop the National League West. Especially with the starting pitching struggling outside of Corbin.