Diamondbacks overcome Braves roadblock as Suarez, Perdomo continue to heat up

Jul 10, 2024, 11:42 PM

Eugenio Suárez...

Eugenio Suárez #28 of the Arizona Diamondbacks gives a thumbs up to Alek Thomas #5 after hitting a two run home run against the Atlanta Braves during the second inning at Chase Field on July 10, 2024 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

(Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — The Arizona Diamondbacks overcame another late push by the Braves to snap their five-game losing streak against Atlanta this season, 7-5 Wednesday at Chase Field.

Eugenio Suarez drove in three runs on two hits, including a mammoth two-run home run, as he continues to perk up offensively.

Geraldo Perdomo recorded three hits, two runs and a key insurance RBI, while Ketel Marte also homered as the offense put a couple lackluster days behind it.

The Braves would not go away, tying the game with a Marcell Ozuna two-run shot off Ryan Thompson in the eighth inning. The D-backs answered right back against Braves reliever Joe Jimenez, taking the lead on a Christian Walker bases-loaded walk.

Paul Sewald came in for the save and recorded a 1-2-3 ninth inning, ending a streak of three straight blown saves. Perdomo made a diving snag at shortstop to aid his pitcher.

“This is a good gut check win,” manager Torey Lovullo said.

“It’s really important when we’re facing those guys, Dodgers, Padres, it’s always a good fight,” Perdomo said. “Winning that game, it’s very important for us.”

Eugenio Suarez, Geraldo Perdomo picking it up

Suarez worked a full count and blasted a curveball on the outside edge 452 feet to deep left field, a game-tying homer off Braves starter Charlie Morton. The ball landed on the second deck, as Suarez’s pregame work hitting curveballs off the pitching machine panned out. It marked the third-furthest projected home run hit by a Diamondbacks player this season. Christian Walker has a 464-footer and Marte a 461-footer.

Marte’s eyes must have lit up when he saw a 2-0 sinker coming right down Broadway. His home run sailed 444 feet. That’s four feet shy of 900 feet worth of homers.

Suarez is having a very good couple of weeks, providing depth to the lineup after he had struggled to get the train moving through the first half of the season.

Since Arizona’s last homestand against Minnesota and Oakland began, Suarez is 14-for-47 (.298) with four doubles, a triple and two home runs. He also has 15 strikeouts, that is part of the package, but the power punch has been more evident.

He learned early in his career the importance of keeping his head up, and the 32-year-old veteran has maintained his role as a positive force in the clubhouse amid what was a .575 OPS season through the middle of June.

“It’s something I’ve been working hard on all my years, I already have experience and I always think about that is something that is important to me,” Suarez said. “Stay calm every day. Believe in myself, believe in what I can do, work hard, don’t chase results. … enjoy the game, because this is a game, and sometimes it’s frustrating but I always smile and think positive. That helps me. And I pray a lot.”

It is only a two-week sample size, but Suarez has experience turning it on in the second halves of seasons, and this would be a significant development for the Diamondbacks if it proves sustainable.

“He is a proven offensive commodity,” Lovullo said. “You’re always curious about what the next year will bring. The Aprils and Mays traditionally have not been the best months for him, the late July, August, September swings have been his best months. He’s been very true to that that form.

“We know that he can turn the game around on one swing of the bat. I just wanted to be patient through this process with him. We talked to him about a few things, about maybe ramping up the intensity of his pregame work and just practicing a little bit different. He accepted that. We talked about sitting down in a couple very crucial situations. He accepted not starting every day. Those are hard things to swallow when you’ve done the things he’s done in this game. So I’m very thankful for that.”

Perdomo, meanwhile, has a five-game hitting streak going as he continues to progress further from meniscus surgery that knocked him off the field for two months.

The switch-hitter is batting .341 over the last 11 games. He is not 100% where he would like to be offensively, though, as there remains residual effects of missing extended time with a knee injury.

Part of that, he explained, involves being more stable with his right knee while hitting left-handed. Perdomo, throughout his MLB career and especially last season, has been better hitting from the left side. That has flipped this year as he feels more comfortable against lefties while working on getting back to 100% against righties.

Paul Sewald saves

Sewald kept an even keel after ending what he called a bad week at work, although cameras showed perhaps a slight sigh of relief after the final out.

“I didn’t make the first three a bigger deal than they were, and I’m not going to make this one a bigger deal than it is,” Sewald said. “It’s just one. I hope I get another chance tomorrow.”

Sewald started the year with 11 straight saves before the three outings went awry, including the series opener against Atlanta.

When asked if D-backs giving him an insurance run was helpful, Sewald said he had no doubts he would throw a zero anyway on Wednesday.

“One run, two runs, three runs, 12 runs, I was going out there to post a zero either way,” Sewald said.

The Diamondbacks have a chance to get back to .500 on Thursday.

Brandon Pfaadt will start for Arizona against Atlanta’s Max Fried.

D-backs catcher Gabriel Moreno is “penciled” into the lineup after missing Wednesday’s game with back discomfort.

First pitch is at 6:40 p.m. on 98.7 and the Arizona Sports app.  

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