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D-backs SP Zac Gallen set to make 2021 debut Tuesday vs. Athletics

Zac Gallen (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

After struggling out the gate, the Arizona Diamondbacks found some traction with a series win over the Cincinnati Reds this past weekend.

Everything appeared to be working on both sides of the ball for the D-backs (4-6), something that hadn’t been evident to start 2021.

Their positive upswing continued ahead of Monday’s matchup against the Oakland Athletics with the news that starting pitcher Zac Gallen will get the nod Tuesday.

Before suffering a hairline stress fracture in his forearm this spring training, Gallen sported a 2.13 ERA and allowed three earned runs and four walks in 12.2 innings (four starts). He struck out 11 and had a 1.263 WHIP.

“I was gonna make sure I checked all the boxes with the medical team all the way up until a couple minutes ago,” Torey Lovullo said via Zoom. “Zac Gallen will be our starting pitcher tomorrow.

“I think it’s obvious what he means to this team and to this rotation,” the skipper added. “He is coming off an unbelievable 2020 where he continued to grow and learn and he took that on to the offseason. We saw the same things take place the start of spring training.

“We all know what he means to this ballclub. It’s a welcome addition, as was Nick Ahmed, as was Kole Calhoun. We’re a good baseball team that keeps getting with the return of all these injured players.”

Lovullo added the corresponding move has not yet been determined.

Last season, Gallen finished with a 3-2 record to go along with a 2.75 ERA and a 2.7 WAR. His nine quality starts over 12 games led the team. Fellow starter Merrill Kelly was the next closest with four.

Arizona’s rotation has combined for three quality starts and three wins so far in 2021. Not one starter has more than a single win.

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