ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

D-backs’ Zac Gallen quotes Kobe Bryant after LA success: ‘Job’s not finished’

Oct 10, 2023, 6:15 AM

Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Zac Gallen stayed on the attack in a 4-2 victory Monday against the Los Angeles Dodgers that put the D-backs on the brink of eliminating their NL West rival with one more win in the NLDS.

Though he will be on ice for the next few days, his comments after the Diamondbacks went ahead 2-0 on the Dodgers with the series heading to Phoenix said enough to set the tone with Game 3 on deck Wednesday.

It just so happened that Gallen quoted the late Los Angeles Lakers great Kobe Bryant in Los Angeles.

“Job’s not finished, really. It’s the quote Kobe was talking about,” Gallen said, referring to Bryant’s refusal to enjoy a 2-0 lead during the 2009 NBA Finals against the Orlando Magic. “What’s there to be happy about, really?

“I think it’s a good spot for us to be in playing with a little confidence. I don’t think it’s any secret we’ve come in here (at Dodger Stadium) and struggled. So I think it was good for us just mentally (for) ourselves to come in here and set the tone, have a little faith in ourselves.”

Arizona has been the aggressor in the series, jumping ahead early on and holding leads after chasing the Dodgers’ starting pitchers, Clayton Kershaw and Bobby Miller.

Gallen followed a strong start by Merrill Kelly in Game 1 by going 5.1 frames, allowing two earned runs and keeping Los Angeles guessing with his pitch mix and location. That was made no more obvious than an in-the-zone knuckle curve to strike out Freddie Freeman in a nervy fifth frame to get out of a stressful situation with Dodgers baserunners on first and third.

That flashed Gallen’s mentality of staying ahead and keeping on the attack in his start.

His attitude didn’t change postgame. He wants his Diamondbacks to remain alert and ahead of Los Angeles.

“I grew up, I was a Jordan guy … and I think Kobe was the closest to it just in terms of the mentality,” Gallen said. “Yeah, I mean that clip, I think it’s the Finals in ’09 … just yeah, what’s there to be happy about?

“I think it’s something everybody can learn from really. We have to still continue to play with a chip on our shoulder.”

Arizona Diamondbacks

Bobby Witt Jr....

Arizona Sports

Diamondbacks struggle to contain red-hot Bobby Witt Jr. in loss to Royals

The Diamondbacks ran into the hottest hitter in baseball on Monday, and Royals shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. finished a single shy of a cycle. 

5 hours ago

Manager Torey Lovullo...

Alex Weiner

Diamondbacks’ Torey Lovullo ejected as tensions rise vs. Royals

Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo was ejected from Monday's ballgame at the Royals after tensions rose following a pair of hit-by-pitches.

6 hours ago

Colorado Rockies v Arizona Diamondbacks...

Alex Weiner

Reports: Diamondbacks sign draft picks Ivan Luciano, Tytus Cissell

The Arizona Diamondbacks took the next step adding a large segment of their 2024 draft class to the organization.

9 hours ago

Yilber Diaz...

Aaron Schmidt

Diamondbacks-Royals preview: Pitching probables, key players

The Arizona Diamondbacks look to keep their momentum as they open a three-game series against an improved Kansas City Royals team on Monday.

14 hours ago

Arizona Diamondbacks designated hitter Ketel Marte reacts to striking out during the eighth inning ...

Associated Press

Nico Hoerner’s bases-loaded walk in the 10th gives the Cubs a victory over the D-backs

Nico Hoerner walked with the bases loaded in the 10th to give the Chicago Cubs a 2-1 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday.

1 day ago

Corbin Carroll #7 of the Arizona Diamondbacks rounds the bases after hitting a two-run home run in ...

Associated Press

Homers by Carroll, Thomas lead D-backs to victory over Cubs

Corbin Carroll hit a two-run homer and Alek Thomas had a solo shot in Arizona’s three-run fifth inning to help the D-backs beat the Cubs for their sixth win in seven games.

2 days ago

D-backs’ Zac Gallen quotes Kobe Bryant after LA success: ‘Job’s not finished’