Peralta powers Narron-led D-backs past Giants, back into first
Aug 3, 2018, 10:38 PM | Updated: 10:44 pm
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
PHOENIX — The race at the top of the NL West is the tightest in baseball right now. In fact, three teams entered play on Friday night within two games of first place.
The last thing the Arizona Diamondbacks want to do is let a fourth contender enter the fray.
That’s why this four-game series against San Francisco is such a big one. Bruce Bochy’s club is just a couple games back of the trio at the top of the division, and Arizona has an opportunity to widen that gap and push the Giants further into the rear view this weekend.
The D-backs dropped the opener on Thursday, but erupted for five runs in the first on Friday, holding on for a 6-3 win in front of 27,581 fans at Chase Field.
Paul Goldschmidt cracked his team-leading 24th home run of the season, and David Peralta continued his recent run of hot hitting with a single, double and homer of his own.
He’s already picked up seven hits in nine at-bats to begin this series.
Patrick Corbin struggled early, allowing three hits and a run in the first, then stumbling through a rough third that saw San Francisco plate another pair. But he ultimately settled in to strike out eight while giving Torey Lovullo’s group 6.0 innings.
Thing is, Lovullo wasn’t actually in the dugout for this one. The D-backs’ manager felt under the weather before the game, so bench coach Jerry Narron took over for the evening.
He’s 1-0 now. And Arizona is back in a tie with the Dodgers for first in the West, two games up on the Rockies and five up on the Giants.
– The D-backs batted around in the first, collecting five runs on six hits before the inning ended.
– Corbin helped his own cause with a two-run single in that opening inning.
– Peralta’s homer to left was his 17th of the season, tying his career high.
– Nick Ahmed made a slick play at short on a chopper by Brandon Crawford to end the eighth. Then he was promptly hit with a pitch when he led off the bottom half of the inning.
– Arizona pitchers retired 15 San Francisco hitters in a row until Hunter Pence broke up the streak with two outs in the ninth.
– It’s early, but the Eduardo Escobar trade is looking more and more like a good one for the D-backs. He went 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI on Friday, raising his average to .313 with a pair of runs and three RBI in his first four games with Arizona.
– When Diamondback starters last at least 6.0 innings in a game, they are 34-12 this year.
– The three earned runs Corbin allowed tonight matches the total he had given up in his previous 29.1 innings of work against the Giants at Chase Field.
– Brad Boxberger made things needlessly interesting in the ninth, putting two runners on and bringing the tying run to the plate before getting Gorkys Hernandez to ground out to third.
STAT OF THE GAME
200: Career home runs for Paul Goldschmidt, in 1,043 career games.
HE SAID IT
“That’s a really good thing if you [a pitcher] get to hit in the first. I fell behind 0-2, wasn’t really sure, just tried to put the bat on the ball and hope for a good thing to happen.” – Patrick Corbin, on his two-run single in the first inning.
– Buster Posey left the game after singling in the third. The Giants pulled him to watch for concussion symptoms.
These two clubs will meet again at Chase Field on Saturday, for the third game in this four-game series. First pitch is set for 5:10 p.m., with pregame coverage beginning at 4:30 p.m. on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station.
Clay Buchholz (4-1) gets the start for the Diamondbacks, looking for his fourth straight win. He hasn’t dropped a decision since May 26 in Oakland, and he’s picked up victories in each of his last three starts. That includes his most recent outing on July 29, when he struck out seven and allowed three runs over 5.2 innings in a 5-4 victory over the Padres.
The 33-year old righty has faced the Giants once already this year, scattering two runs over 6.0 innings in a no-decision back on July 6. He’s only gone up against San Francisco twice in his entire career, though, sporting a 2.57 ERA.
The Giants will counter with Andrew Suarez (4-6), who will be making just his 19th career start. He picked up a win in his last appearance, despite surrendering four runs over 6.0 innings against the Brewers on July 29.
Two of his 18 Major League starts have come against Arizona. He’s 1-1 with a 3.97 ERA and 1.15 WHIP over 11.1 innings in those contests.