ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

Game 3 of NLDS vs. Dodgers couldn’t be more different for Diamondbacks 6 years later

Oct 10, 2023, 6:45 PM | Updated: Oct 11, 2023, 9:54 am

Torey Lovullo, Arizona Diamondbacks...

Manager Torey Lovullo #17 of the Arizona Diamondbacks during a break in the action in the National League Wild Card game against the Colorado Rockies at Chase Field on October 4, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — The Arizona Diamondbacks have been here before, albeit under far different circumstances.

The 2017 National League Divisional Series shifted to Phoenix for Game 3 against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Arizona was down 2-0 in the series, having surrendered 17 runs in L.A.

In Game 3, the D-backs never led, limited to just three hits and didn’t walk to put a bow on a series that felt like a mere formality.

Things have changed.

The snakes come back to Chase Field this go-around up 15-4 in runs, even better than the Dodgers’ plus-7 run differential through two games in 2017. Their home fans not only have just belief. It’s almost an expectation now for Arizona to finish taking care of its business. They will enter the ball park on Wednesday ready to party, as their team’s manager would like it.

That man, Torey Lovullo, knows how they can get, and it’s undeniably going to play a factor in Game 3.

Five days prior to 2017’s Game 3, one of the most electric atmospheres in Valley sports history was hosted by the D-backs in an unforgettable 11-8 win over the Colorado Rockies in the win-or-go-home wild card round.

We don’t have enough time to go over all the moments in that game. Tommy Pham’s four hits in Game 1 on Saturday made him just the third D-back to achieve that feat, and one of them was Jake Lamb in that very 2017 contest. Most didn’t even notice the terrific four-single day the third baseman had that night.

Current face of the franchise and rookie outfielder Corbin Carroll has been told by people around the organization the crowd that night is one of a few examples about how loud Chase Field can get. Ever since he was drafted in 2019, he has been reassured to expect a rowdy environment for big games.

Now he gets his first one as a home player.

“There was some great crowds in L.A., great crowds in Milwaukee but to do it front of home fans is a lot cooler,” Carroll said Tuesday.

Lovullo was asked what comes to mind first when someone brings the 2017 fixture up to him.

“A sold-out stadium, an energy that I don’t necessarily feel here every night and I think we played one of our finest games that day,” Lovullo said Tuesday.

“I think this team, we just went into a very hostile territory and it was extremely loud against us but it’ll be a little bit different. This crowd is going to be behind us and we want to play our best baseball for them,” Lovullo added.

The manager cited Paul Goldschmidt’s homer in the first inning as a significant moment, saying “that eruption was probably one of the two or three loudest eruptions I have ever felt on the stadium floor.”

Among all the triples and other momentum swings, it’s a terrific play to bring up for Wednesday because it was the first real strike of the night.

That explosion of noise set the tone for the rest of the night.

In a series defined thus far by the D-backs striking first, it is pivotal they do it for the third straight game to get the crowd roaring in a similar fashion. The fans will be ready for those moments. Let’s see how many this team gives us on Wednesday.

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