ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

D-backs drop 5th straight with loss to Tigers: ‘These are grinding times’

Jun 25, 2022, 11:40 PM
Detroit Tigers' Javier Baez (28) is caught stealing by Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zach D...

Detroit Tigers' Javier Baez (28) is caught stealing by Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zach Davies (27) during the first inning of a baseball game, Saturday, June 25, 2022, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

(AP Photo/Matt York)

PHOENIX — The Arizona Diamondbacks took a blow in the sixth inning of Saturday’s ballgame against the Detroit Tigers and did not get up.

The score was tied 3-3 before Tigers rookie Kody Clemens sent his first career big-league home run into the right-field stands off reliever Joe Mantiply.

Detroit took a 6-3 lead, and the D-backs never got the game-tying run to the plate.

Arizona fell for its fifth straight loss and one that led manager Torey Lovullo to say he’s as frustrated as he’s been this year.

“We’re in a grinding moment right now,” Lovullo said. “So I want these guys to absorb what happened today, understand why it happened and come out tomorrow and execute and get it done. That’s all we can do.”

The first four innings were not the cleanest for the D-backs, especially defensively, but Arizona seemed to break through offensively in the fourth.

Left fielder David Peralta ran into a hanging slider and shot it 411 feet into the seats in right. The two-run moonshot looked as if it traveled as high as it went far, and Peralta watched it fly over the wall before taking off.

Right fielder Daulton Varsho, who was 5 for his last 33, slammed an RBI double to right-center two batters later to score second baseman Buddy Kennedy. Varsho’s laser had an exit velocity of 109 miles per hour.

The lead didn’t last long, though, as two runs scored the following half inning on an error by Kennedy. Tigers center fielder Riley Greene hit a broken bat grounder to the second baseman who committed the second error of the night for the D-backs.

Starter Zach Davies managed to keep the game drawn despite the defensive woes behind him, allowing two earned runs in five frames.

Davies was taken out at 75 pitches, and Lovullo said he changed speeds well and dotted the outer edge.

“A little bit shaky with command, there were times where I felt good about it and there were times where I was missing over the plate a little bit but for the most part not too much damage,” Davies said.

“I think it was just an opportunity they were able to get the bullpen guys in, I’m competitive and I always want to be out there, but at the same time, I don’t manage the team.”

He came out earlier than usual for Mantiply due to matchups and since the bullpen was well rested, Lovullo said.

Mantiply had a 17-game scoreless streak entering Saturday before Clemens, the son of Roger Clemens, hit the first home run by a left-handed bat against the reliever in his major-league career (96 appearances).

Kennedy tried to get the D-backs back in scoring position with a rope to center fielder, but Greene laid out for a full-extension diving catch.

That turned out to be Arizona’s last best chance to score, helped by another Greene sliding catch in the seventh to rob third baseman Josh Rojas.

The D-backs have scored two runs in the seventh inning or later over their last eight games, a departure from the relentless offense seen in May.

“Frustrated is a good word,” first baseman Christian Walker, who went 0-for-2 with two walks, said postgame.

“We’re aware of how capable we are and how good we can be. And when that doesn’t show up, and you string together a couple of those nights in a row, it can be frustrating. Fortunately, baseball is a very long season and we could start a winning streak tomorrow.”

The D-backs managed only five hits and left three runners in scoring position on Saturday night.

UP NEXT

The D-backs will look to avoid a second straight sweep Sunday at 1:10 p.m.

Dallas Keuchel will make his D-backs debut, as Lovullo said the veteran lefty will start. Keuchel, the 2015 American League MVP, signed a minor league deal with Arizona on June 7.

“We’ve been having a lot of discussions, we had some internal options and we feel like he deserves an opportunity.”

Catch the action on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station.

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