D-backs manager Lovullo lost sleep over decision to stick with Godley

Apr 12, 2019, 6:50 PM
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)...
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said he lost sleep Thursday night over a decision that ultimately played a big part in the team’s loss to the San Diego Padres hours earlier.

He kept starting pitcher Zack Godley in the game a bit too long in his estimation. Godley was rocked for five runs in the sixth inning after allowing just one run in the first five. The D-backs ultimately lost the game, 7-6.

Situations like that likely won’t arise as often in the future, according to Lovullo.

The manager wants to be more mindful of when he’s pulling his starters not only for his own personal sleep benefits, but for a team that has already run into similar situations a couple of times this season.

“I believe in starting pitchers. I think they have to carry the workload and they have over the last couple of years and put us in a good situations,” Lovullo said before Friday’s game. “However, I need to be a little more situationally aware of what’s happening and the pace in which it’s happening because I can’t let situations get away from our starting pitchers like that.”

It’s a difficult balance for Lovullo.

Take Godley’s outing as an example. He walked Wil Myers to start the sixth, then gave up back-to-back singles to Eric Hosmer and Manny Machado before Hunter Renfroe reached on a fielder’s choice.

Even so, Godley had the chance to get out of the inning allowing only just one run, but gave up a sacrifice fly to Fernando Tatis Jr. before the big hit of the inning, a 3-run home run from Austin Hedges.

“I lost a little sleep over that, I’m not going to lie,” Lovullo said of his decision to stick with Godley. “Hindsight is always 20/20 and I know the results.

“I definitely would have changed what I would have done but you live and learn and I think I’ll pay attention to certain things at certain times with certain guys and a certain pitch count.”

Godley and Robbie Ray have been the pitchers who have fallen victim to late-inning faults so far this season.

It could mean a quicker hook for them in high leverage situations later in games, which could put more stress on a bullpen that has seen its share of struggles so far.

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