ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

Grit Index: D-backs open homestand with a win

Aug 7, 2013, 5:57 AM | Updated: 3:16 pm

The Arizona Diamondbacks finally got their offense going on Tuesday night in a 6-1 win over the Rays in the first of a short two-game series. All around it was a solid game for the D-backs who have struggled to put complete games together on a consistent basis lately.

The Rays got on the board first with a solo shot by Evan Longoria in the top of the fourth inning but it didn’t take long for Arizona’s offense to bounce back.

Four of the Diamondbacks’ six runs came later in the fourth inning with an Eric Chavez RBI double and a three-run homer by Cody Ross.

The D-backs offense didn’t stop there, Chavez recorded another RBI double in the fifth and Martin Prado doubled in Adam Eaton in the sixth.

Overall the D-backs recorded eight hits and were 2-for-5 with runners in scoring position.

Starter Wade Miley was impressive once again. He allowed one run, struck out five and walked two in seven innings of work for his fifth win in his past six starts. He’s now 9-8 on the season. Heath Bell came into pitch a scoreless eighth and Brad Ziegler followed with a solid ninth.

As for Tampa Bay’s starter, that’s the second time in a less than a week that Arizona has beaten Jeremy Hellickson. He gave up five runs and five hits while walking in three. Hellickson is 10-5 on the year and Arizona handed him his first road loss since April 25.

The Good:

Outfielder Cody Ross is on a tear lately. He’s hitting .452 with three home runs and ten RBI in his last eight games. Tonight against the Rays he was 1-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored.

Lefty Wade Miley has also found his groove. He is 5-1 with a 1.54 ERA in his last seven starts. He’s allowed three earned runs or less in 12 straight starts since June 5th.

The Bad:

Despite the Diamondbacks finally earning a win and the Dodgers losing a game, they’re still five games out of first place in the National League West.

Noted:

-Reliever Heath Bell has recorded eleven straight scoreless outings

-Wil Nieves has hit safely in nine of his last ten games

-Eric Chavez 39 RBI eclipsed his total from 2012 which was 37 RBI in 113 games. He has a total of seven RBI in three games against the Rays this season.

He Said It:

“Well he’s just barreling the ball a lot better and you could see it coming on. I was just kind of tucking him between the two lefties so he got a lot of lefties and he’s always been successful against left handers. You just kind of get your confidence and he’s much calmer at the plate, he’s not jumping at the ball as much and he’s just barreling it. You can see the power come back, staying back better on the ball, he’s recognizing it better.” -Manger Kirk Gibson on why Cody Ross is red hot lately.

Up Next:

The Diamondbacks play the finale of this quick series against the visiting Rays on Wednesday night. Randall Delgado will make the start for Arizona with a 4-3 record and a 3.17 ERA. In his last start, he earned a 7-6 win over the Red Sox in Boston on August 2. He worked six innings and only allowed four earned runs. In the righty’s last seven starts, he’s 4-2 with a 2.76 ERA. Opposite Delgado will be righty Chris Archer for Tampa Bay. He’s 6-4 on the season with a 2.65 ERA and won AL Rookie of the Month honors in July. First pitch Wednesday is set for 6:40pm on Arizona Sports 620AM.

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