Sedona Red Recap: D-backs’ bullpen comes up big in Mother’s Day win over Padres
May 10, 2015, 5:58 PM | Updated: 5:58 pm
The Arizona Diamondbacks knew they were going to need help from the bullpen Sunday.
Rainstorms and a doubleheader in Colorado early last week threw the rotation out of whack a little, meaning there wasn’t really one specific scheduled pitcher for the club to lean on.
So, instead, they leaned on five.
Daniel Hudson, J.C. Ramirez, Oliver Perez, Evan Marshall and Addison Reed combined to allow just one run as the Diamondbacks picked up a 2-1 win over San Diego in front of 24,881 fans at Chase Field on Mother’s Day afternoon.
The victory salvaged a series split with the Padres and pulled Arizona within a game and a half of San Diego for second in the NL West.
Making his first start since 2012, Hudson delivered 3.1 scoreless innings, scattering two hits and striking out five. From there, the bullpen took over.
Ramirez came up big in relief, just hours after being recalled from Reno and arriving in the Valley. He was credited with the win, but Hudson’s return was the story early on.
The 6-foot-3 righty had made just 12 appearances (all in relief) since tearing his ulnar collateral ligament in June 2012. Manager Chip Hale indicated before the game that Hudson would be on a pitch count, and he made the most of the 56 pitches he threw. He was nearly perfect through the first three innings, allowing just one single that got by shortstop Nick Ahmed in the second. And when the right-hander started to wear down in the fourth, Ramirez was able to step right in and close out the inning without letting any runs cross the plate.
Aaron Hill and A.J. Pollock provided all the offense Arizona needed. Hill took the first Andrew Cashner pitch he saw over the left field wall to give the Diamondbacks a 1-0 lead in the second. Pollock followed suit in the third, lining an 0-1 pitch just over the outstretched arm of Justin Upton and into the left field seats. For each player, it was his third homerun of the season.
There was some confusion in the fourth, when Wil Myers walked with one out, then advanced on an Upton single to right. Myers seemed to lose sight of the ball as he was heading to second though, nearly doubled back to first, then tried to sprint around second — running into Ahmed in the process. Originally, Myers was awarded third base on the play, but the umpires conferred and sent him back to second. At that point, Padres’ manager Bud Black was unhappy and let everyone on the field know it.
Ramirez (1-0) then stepped in to make his Diamondbacks debut with just one out and the bases loaded. And he got the job done, striking out Jedd Gyorko and inducing a ground out from Alexi Amarista. Ramirez picked up a win in his first major league appearance since 2013, while Cashner (1-6) took the loss for San Diego.
The Diamondbacks figured they’d rely on the bullpen quite a bit today, but they needed someone to step in and deliver a few strong innings to begin the game. Hudson did just that, looking a lot more like the starter fans knew back in 2011. He was almost untouchable early on, and his performance seemed to lift the whole team.
The fourth inning had the potential to be a turning point in the game, with Hudson starting to wear down and the confusion over where to put Myers after an Upton hit. Following Hudson’s walk to Will Venable to load the bases, Ramirez came in worked out of a huge jam to keep the Padres scoreless.
Hill made a great diving stop on Cashner’s fifth inning grounder, though he wasn’t quite able to throw him out at first.
David Peralta showed off his impressive throwing arm in left yet again in the sixth, fielding an Austin Hedges single with runners on first and second and firing home to prevent Gyorko from advancing past third and tying the game. That kept the score 2-1 in favor of Arizona, and Cashner then grounded into a fielder’s choice to end the inning.
Paul Goldschmidt has been one of the best hitters in all of baseball this season, but he uncharacteristically hit into a double play with runners on first and third in the sixth to kill a potentially big inning for Arizona.
Tuffy Gosewisch led off the eighth with a double and later advanced to third on an Ahmed sacrifice, but nobody could bring him home with one out.
STAT OF THE GAME
2: The lowest run total scored by the Diamondbacks in a win so far this season (previous low was four). And, ironically, it came on a day when they had to lean on a variety of pitchers, rather than one established starter.
HE SAID IT
“Knowing that you don’t really have a true starter, of our five, pitching … they knew they had to dig deep and made some great defensive plays. That play in the ninth — Pollock catching that ball on the run — was a fantastic catch. So, I’m really, really proud of them.” – Hale on his team’s defense
Arizona is now 5-2 in the last seven series finales.
Hill has now reached base in nine consecutive games. He’s hit all three of his home runs in that stretch.
One day after tying a career high with four walks, Goldschmidt saw his streak of reaching base in 21 straight games against San Diego snapped.
Prior to Sunday, Ramirez hadn’t pitched in the majors since 2013 with Philadelphia. He was recalled from Reno and said he arrived in Phoenix around 9:30 a.m. — roughly three and a half hours before the first pitch.
Arizona is now 13-0 when leading after eight innings.
The Diamondbacks welcome red-hot Bryce Harper and the surging Washington Nationals to town for a three-game set that starts Monday night. First pitch is at 6:40 p.m., with pregame coverage beginning on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM at 6 p.m.
The Nats have won seven of eight, and will throw Max Scherzer (2-3) in the opener. Scherzer was originally drafted No. 11 overall by Arizona in 2006, and made 37 starts for the club in 2008 and 2009. He pitched for Detroit from 2010 to 2014 — winning the AL Cy Young Award in 2013 — before joining Washington’s rotation this year.
Meanwhile, Arizona will counter with Josh Collmenter (3-3). The 6-foot-4 righty ran into some trouble in his last start, allowing five earned runs over seven innings in Colorado. He picked up the win anyway, though, his third in his last four outings. And he was brilliant in two of his three previous starts, going eight innings without an earned run against the Rockies on April 29 and tossing a complete-game shutout in San Francisco on April 17.
Harper has been the talk of the baseball world lately, going 10-for-16 with six home runs, eight runs scored and 13 RBI over his last four games. This will be the only time the Nationals visit Chase Field this season.
The two teams will meet for a four-game series in Washington in early August.