Astros and Mets series huge for the Diamondbacks

Aug 8, 2011, 5:21 PM | Updated: 6:40 pm

The Arizona Diamondbacks had an opportunity to gain ground on the division leading Giants over the weekend as San Francisco lost 3-of-4 to the Philadelphia Phillies. Instead the D-backs fell short losing their weekend series to the Dodgers and remaining a half game back of the NL West lead.

With the Giants still in the division lead and a 10-game east coast road trip on the horizon, the Diamondbacks have a lot of work to do at home this week.

“You do not gain ground having games in Philadelphia, in Atlanta and a Thursday night game in which you’re then going to turn around and travel all night across the country with the Nationals doing you no favors,” Sports 620 KTAR’s Doug Franz said Monday on Doug and Wolf. “You are about to get destroyed. This homestand has to be the definitive answer to make sure you’re still in it after you have that road trip.”

Making a statement during this seven-game homestand should be made easier by the fact that the lowly Houston Astros and New York Mets are the teams coming to Chase Field. If the D-backs struggle like they did with Los Angeles things could get ugly fast for one of baseball’s best stories so far.

“Look at the Pirates,” Franz said. “The Pirates were the same way. Everybody loved them. They were only a game out of first. It was all wonderful. And what did they have? A road trip to Philly and to Atlanta and they haven’t won game since.”

While the task in front of the Diamondbacks may look daunting, Franz’s co-host Ron Wolfley sees things a little differently.

“This homestand is huge for the D-backs,” Wolf said. “No denying that. But I don’t know I’m going to say if in-fact the Diamondbacks don’t run the table in this homestand they’re going to be out of it after that 10-game east coast trip. I don’t know that the Giants are going to be able to run away.”

Regardless of if the Diamondbacks run the table against the Mets and Astros this homestand, it is abundantly clear just what the next seven games could mean for the organization’s playoff hopes.

The hallmark of a good team is beating the opponents you are suppose to. While they struggled to defeat the Dodgers, a team that is 9.5 games below them in the standings, the D-backs must prove this week that it was the exception and not the rule.

Losing to the Astros and Mets could not only see them fall in the standings but damage their confidence heading into one of the toughest road trips of the year.

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Astros and Mets series huge for the Diamondbacks