Diamondbacks late-inning pitching woes continue

Jul 4, 2016, 11:05 PM | Updated: Jul 5, 2016, 8:39 am
Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Archie Bradley throws in the first inning during a baseball game again...

Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Archie Bradley throws in the first inning during a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Monday, July 4, 2016, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

Offensive disappearing acts, defensive blunders, bad pitching and injuries have all done enough to mar the Arizona Diamondbacks’ 2016 season.

But of late, the trend has been less about random poor luck.

Over the course of losing eight of their last nine games, the Diamondbacks have allowed 23 earned runs in the last three innings, which calculates out to an ERA of 7.66. Monday night was no different for Chip Hale’s team, which saw starter Archie Bradley allow two earned runs through five innings before falling apart to allow three runs in the sixth.

The result after D-backs reliever Daniel Hudson gave up three earned runs in the eight was an 8-4 home loss, continuing the disappointing trend.

“It has happened in the middle of the game, where either our starter is on the third time around or our middle reliever is just not getting the job done,” Hale said to the media afterward. “But we’re just walking the lead-off hitter — it just spells doom. We did it tonight after we scored the run to go ahead (3-2 in the fifth), and then Archie went out to walk the lead-off guy.

“Those are just not recipes to win,” he added. “We have to tighten it up. We’re just not playing winning baseball right now. That’s what it comes down to.”

Bradley closed the game with six innings pitched, allowing five runs, walking three and giving up two home runs.

“Just frustrating again,” he told the media. “Had good innings, had bad innings. Just have to work to put a complete game together. You take a look … I’m just putting myself in bad situations and just keep continuing to do it.

“I got to find a way, whether it’s make different pitches, make different selections.”

Bradley isn’t alone.

Starters Shelby Miller and Robbie Ray, not to mention three of the D-backs’ most trustworthy relievers this year — Brad Ziegler, Daniel Hudson and Jake Barrett — have found trouble during Arizona’s recent homestand.

“It has to be consistent,” Hale said. “(Bradley) has to become a winning pitcher. Sort of a theme with a lot of our guys right now — their stuff’s good, they have some really impressive innings. They have to give us six, seven of those.”

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