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Grit Index: Diamondbacks shutout, blowout Rays

Twice in July, Wade Miley has been the Arizona Diamondbacks’ stopper.

On Wednesday night in St. Petersburg, Miley put an end to the Diamondbacks’ three-game losing streak, shutting out the Tampa Bay Rays over 6.1 innings, keeping seven baserunners from scoring while striking out eight.

That — stopping a three-game skid — is something Miley did earlier in the month, on July 11, when he held the Milwaukee Brewers to three runs over eight innings pitched for the Diamondbacks.

Wednesday’s outing wrapped up an excellent couple of months for Miley, who seems to be returning to the form he had last season, when he finished second in National League Rookie of the Year voting.

In 11 starts spread over June and July, Miley has recorded eight quality starts and hasn’t allowed more than three runs once.

Meanwhile, the Diamondbacks’ offense broke out of its three-game slumber — a stretch during which they only managed to plate five runs, scoring seven times against the Rays.

Two-hole hitter Martin Prado, who is hitting .325 over his last 30 games, scored first for the Diamondbacks, after driving a first-inning double to Tropicana Field’s left field corner. Cody Ross got the RBI, also driving in Paul Goldschmidt, who reached base after being hit by a pitch on his left elbow.

Two innings later, designated hitter Eric Chavez homered for the second straight game, plating Goldschmidt, who walked, on the drive. Chavez left Tampa Bay with 5 RBI over the two-game series, accounting for more than half of the team’s total runs batted in on the stop.

The Diamondbacks tacked on runs in each of the seventh, eighth and ninth innings of the game while Heath Bell and J.J. Putz collectively allowed just one Rays batter to reach base, striking out four over 2.2 innings pitched.

After a tough loss on Tuesday at the hands of now former Diamondbacks’ pitcher Ian Kennedy, the team left Tampa Bay with a series split on Wednesday.

The Good:

Cliff Pennington was the only hitless Diamondback on Wednesday, while the top four spots in the team’s batting order each recorded a pair of hits and Cody Ross had a trio.

The Bad:

Despite allowing just two hits and striking out eight over 6.1 scoreless innings, Miley walked five batters, which is the second most he’s allowed all year.


-The Diamondbacks traded Ian Kennedy to the San Diego Padres on Wednesday, acquiring left-handed reliever Joe Thatcher, relief prospect Matt Stites, and a draft pick in the deal. Thatcher will join the Diamondbacks in Texas on Thursday.

-All of the Diamondbacks’ most recent eight wins by starting pitchers — spread out over the team’s last 20 games — have been earned by either Miley, Patrick Corbin, or Randall Delgado.

Up Next:

The Diamondbacks are headed to Arlington, Texas to make up a postponed game originally scheduled for May 29 against the Rangers. Zeke Spruill (0-0, 2.08 ERA) will be recalled to make a difficult spot start — his first of the year — against Rangers’ ace Yu Darvish (9-5, 2.80 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 4:05 PM MDT.

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