PHOENIX – No lead is safe, no deficit too large to overcome for the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Down 6-0 after just two innings, the D-backs rallied to beat the Atlanta Braves, 9-8, to win the rubber match of the three-game series in front of an announced crowd of 17,717 at Chase Field on Wednesday afternoon.
With three runs in the seventh, the D-backs completed the comeback with Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s sacrifice fly to bring home the go-ahead run.
Five players had multi-hit games, led by Yasmany Tomas who went 3-for-5.
A.J. Pollock, David Peralta, Chris Owings and Saltalamacchia each had two hits. Peralta drove in two with Tomas, Pollock, Owings, Saltalamacchi, Cliff Pennington and pinch-hitter Aaron Hill each adding an RBI.
Pollock homered in the fifth.
The D-backs plated nine runs—their most since May 12—without a single hit or RBI from Paul Goldschmidt, who went hitless in three at-bats and walked twice.
Andrew Chafin (4-0) earned the win, Brad Zielger the save, his second in as many games.
The comeback let stater Rubby De La Rosa off the hook.
He allowed a run in the first and six more in the second, each time with two outs in the inning.
De La Rosa, who has surrendered at least four runs in three straight starts, managed to go five innings in which he tied his career-high with eight strikeouts.
The D-backs won their eighth series of the season, improving them to 25-27.
Small ball resulted in the D-backs first run of the game. With one out in the second inning, Owings and Saltalamacchia hit back-to-back singles, moved up 90 feet on a passed ball and then Owings scored on Pennington’s groundout to first. For Pennington, it was his fourth RBI of the season in just his 11th start.
Available to pinch-hit but not play in the field the past two games because of a bruised left middle finger he suffered at Milwaukee, Peralta responded with a two-out, two-run double off the left field wall in the third inning, cutting the D-backs’ deficit in half, 6-3. Peralta, who has now hit safely in all seven career games against the Braves, plated Goldschmidt who had walked, and Tomas, who recorded his own double (his eighth of the season).
Aside from Goldschmidt, Pollock may be swinging the hottest bat for the D-backs. In the fifth inning, he drove a 1-2 pitch over the fence in left field for his second home run in as many games, a first in his big league career. The homer, his seventh of the season, made it 7-4 Braves. Pollock finished 2-for-4 and has now hit safely in 13 of his last 15 games at a .452 clip (25-for-62) with five doubles, two triples, four home runs, eight RBI and 11 walks.
Hammered for three runs the night before, J.C. Ramirez rebounded with a scoreless sixth inning in which he recorded two strikeouts. Ramirez had been credited with blown saves in each of his past two appearances.
Though he gave up consecutive singles to begin the seventh inning, Chafin settled down to strand runners on the corners with a strikeout of Christian Bethancourt to record his sixth straight scoreless appearance.
Addison Reed pitched an excellent shutdown inning. He completed a 1-2-3 eighth with a strikeout and two groundouts, needing only 13 pitches. Reed has now held opponents scoreless in eight of his last nine games.
Tomas had his fifth multi-hit game of the season. After doubling in the third, he singled in both the fifth and seventh innings. The former, he beat the throw from third for his 11th infield hit of the season; the later drove in the D-backs’ sixth run. Tomas has hit safely in 15 of his last 17 games at a .373 clip (28-for-75) with six doubles, one home run and 13 RBI.
Yes, De La Rosa struck out the side in the first inning, but between strikeouts he allowed an infield single and double down the left field line, the latter of which was hit by Nick Markakis and scored Cameron Maybin for the first run of the game. Maybin had initially been called out, but after a 2:49 instant replay view it was determined he had beaten the throw from Pennington.
Two more strikeouts for De La Rosa came in the second inning, but again, they were sandwiched around more Braves players crossing home plate. With two outs, Maybin lined a 1-2 pitch into right field for a two-run single. Freddie Freeman followed with a three-run home run, again on a 1-2 offering, deep into the seats in right to make it 6-0 Atlanta. For Freeman, it was his fourth homer during what is now a seven-game hitting streak and 12-game hitting streak against the D-backs.
Uh, make that five home runs. Freeman greeted De La Rosa with a two-out solo shot in the fourth inning. It was a 2-0 pitch that Freeman placed into the seats in left field, giving the Braves a 7-3 advantage and him his first multi-homer game of the season and the sixth of his career. Freeman leads Atlanta with 10 home runs and 33 RBI.
A horrible throwing error by Braves reliever Brandon Cunniff allowed the D-backs to add an insurance run in the eighth inning. With one out, Cunniff fielded a comebacker and had Nick Ahmed caught between second and third. His throw, however, sailed over the glove of Chris Johnson at third base, allowing Ahmed to score easily to make it a 9-7 ballgame. It was Atlanta’s one and only error of the series.
STAT OF THE GAME
6: The six-run deficit the D-backs overcame tied a club record
HE SAID IT
“The guys just kept fighting and battling. It just shows what we’ve thought all along, that they’re tough guys and nothing is going to get them down, they’re going to keep playing, and that’s one of the mantras I’ve given them all year is just play nine innings hard.” – manager Chip Hale
Goldschmidt walked twice, the second time intentionally in the eighth inning, his 13th such base on balls this season
D-backs, who improved to 2-17 when trailing after six innings this season, last overcame a six-run deficit on June 8, 2012 against the A’s in which they trailed 6-0 in the middle of the second inning and won 9-8
The seven-game homestand continues with a visit by the New York Mets.
Jeremy Hellickson is the scheduled starter and will be opposed by fellow right-hander Matt Harvey in the opener of the four-game series on Thursday, June 4.
First pitch is scheduled for 6:40 with pregame coverage beginning 30 minutes earlier on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM.
Hellickson (3-3) is on a personal two-game winning streak, having beaten the Cubs and Brewers in each of his past two outings in which he’s allowed five earned runs over 12.2 innings for 3.55 ERA with two walks and seven strikeouts.
Hellickson is 0-1 lifetime against the Mets, losing a 9-6 decision while with Tampa Bay in 2012.
Harvey, meanwhile, won his first five decisions to open the season, but since then has gone 0-3 in his previous five. He’s coming off back-to-back defeats, including a 4-3 loss to the Marlins after allowing four runs on six hits plus a walk and 11 strikeouts in eight innings.
Harvey, who missed all of 2014 after undergoing Tommy John surgery, is 1-1 in two career starts against the D-backs.
A year ago, the D-backs dropped four of the six meetings with the Mets, including a three-game sweep at Chase Field in April.