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Porter on Diamondbacks’ struggles: ‘I think there’s definite frustration’

Chicago Cubs shortstop Addison Russell, right, flips the ball in the air after tagging out Arizona Diamondbacks' Paul Goldschmidt, left, trying to steal second base for the final out during the ninth inning of a baseball game, Monday, Sept. 17, 2018, in Phoenix. The Cubs defeated the Diamondbacks 5-1. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

It’s been a rough end-of-season stretch for the Arizona Diamondbacks (78-74), who’ve dropped 16 of their last 22 games. The last six games have been disappointing for the D-backs, as they’ve dropped five of those, including two at home.

Over this stretch, Arizona has allowed an average of 6.8 runs per game while tacking on just 2.8 runs of their own. Standing six games behind the Dodgers and 4.5 behind Colorado for runner-up, the D-backs cannot afford to keep losing for much longer.

Arizona assistant general manager Jared Porter has witnessed his team’s frustration firsthand over the course of their rough patch.

“I don’t know if I would use the word ‘angry.’ I think there’s definite frustration,” Porter said on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s Doug and Wolf. “We feel like we do have a talented club and unfortunately we’ve gone through a real tough stretch here…”

Just weeks ago, Arizona stood within two games from the top of the division. The tides of the NL West shifted when the Dodgers took three-of-four games from the D-backs in their most recent series to begin September. This was a major part of Los Angeles’ late resurgence to the top of the standings, as they’ve won 17 of their last 24 games.

“A small pocket shouldn’t sink a team. Going into that series, we weren’t playing our best baseball,” Porter said. “It’s tough because I think that possibly could’ve given us a jolt possibly, so you could say, well, if that’s the case, why can’t it have the opposite (effect)?”

Above all, a lack of consistency has been the downfall of the D-backs. Contributors throughout the dugout, including both players and staff, need be on-point to salvage their year. With only 10 games remaining in the regular season slate, the D-backs need to elevate their play to have a chance at sneaking back into playoff contention.

“Our bullpen is incredibly accountable for a rough stretch,” Porter said. “They’ve been in more one-run games, tie games than any team I can remember. It’s a lot of stress to put on a bullpen. It’s hit them at the wrong time, a couple of our key guys have been tired.”

Arizona will host the Chicago Cubs for the third outing of their nine-game homestand tonight. The D-backs have been outscored by a margin of 14-2 through the first two meetings of the series and will look to end the dry spell before a pivotal series against Colorado begins on Friday. First pitch is at 6:40 p.m. on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station.

Doug & Wolf

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