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Diamondbacks roll over Rockies with 8th-inning comeback

Merrill Kelly #29 of the Arizona Diamondbacks high fives Daulton Varsho #12 after scoring against the Colorado Rockies during the second inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on May 02, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — After a blowout loss to the Colorado Rockies the night before, the Arizona Diamondbacks came back to defeat their NL West rival 8-4 Sunday and win the series.

Tied at 4-4 in the bottom of the eighth, the D-backs unleashed a flurry of offense to rally. Catcher Stephen Vogt stepped up to the plate and hit a two-RBI triple that ultimately sealed the victory and had the dugout going wild.

“To slide into third and see all your teammates right there, that really is a dream you have as a kid to hit a triple right in front of your teammates in the third base dugout,” Vogt said via Zoom postgame. “A really cool moment.”

RBI-doubles by Josh Rojas and Daulton Varsho in the next two at-bats added insurance to Arizona’s lead.

“That’s just the bend-don’t-break, resilient attitude that these guys have and they’ve been doing it all year long,” Lovullo said postgame via Zoom. “It’s one of the amazing qualities that they carry.

“There’s a ton of energy no matter what the circumstances are. We’ve just got to get that engine started with a quality moment and good things will take place.”

The D-backs were first to get on the board thanks to a Nick Heath double in the second inning that scored Varsho. However, the Rockies were swift to take the lead in the top of the third.

Down 2-1 in the fifth inning, the D-backs’ bats came alive to score three runs and take a lead they wouldn’t give up until the eighth.

First baseman Pavin Smith knocked in a two-run homer off Colorado’s Chi Chi Gonzalez to get things going for the D-backs in the fifth. Third baseman Eduardo Escobar followed up Smith’s homer with a double that scored Josh VanMeter, who was walked in his at-bat.

Smith, now in his second year with Arizona, has recorded at least one hit in each of his last four games and is batting .273 — the third-best average among all Diamondbacks.

“He’s in a very good hitting position where he’s impacting the baseball,” Lovullo said pregame of Smith’s recent success.”Not totally surprised by his success. We all felt like he was this caliber of player, but it’s fun for us to watch him have a good time and have this success…”

Merrill Kelly held strong in his sixth start of the season. The right-hander allowed two runs on seven hits while striking out six across 5.2 innings of work.

Kelly said his goal with each outing is to keep building on top of his past starts and pave a way to success.

“Today I felt really good,” he said via Zoom postgame. “Ball was coming out well, I was being aggressive. … Other than that, just trying to build each and every start.”

The victory also marked win No. 300 for Lovullo, who celebrated the achievement by jumping in on the team’s TikTok dance.

Lovullo is the fourth manager in franchise history to reach the mark.

“I didn’t even really know, to tell you the truth, until Stefan Crichton congratulated me in the line after the game on my 300th win,” the manager said. “It was a special moment and their reaction, it made me emotional. … For them to reach back and all start to congratulate me, it was moving and I’ll never forget it.

“But it’s not just a 300th win for me, it’s a 300th win for this organization over the past several years since I got here in ’17.”

UP NEXT

The D-backs head to Miami to take on the Marlins in a three-game series starting Tuesday.

First pitch is at 3:40 p.m. Listen live on ESPN 620 AM.


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