PHOENIX – The Arizona Diamondbacks have emerged from April as one of the hottest teams in baseball. With the 7-2 win over the Colorado Rockies on Friday, the D-backs have won 9 of their last 11 games and are two wins over .500.
“Guys were locked in and focused and committed, and it showed up today,” manager Torey Lovullo said.
Pitcher Madison Bumgarner looked to follow up his seven-inning no-hitter masterpiece and continue the success from his last two starts, during which he allowed one run and two hits on 12 strikeouts over 12 innings.
Any hopes of repeating a no-hitter were dashed almost immediately when Trevor Story hit a two-out double in the first inning. He scored on a base hit by the next batter, first baseman CJ Cron.
After this, the 31-year old lefty settled in. He reached 93 mph with his fastball and was throwing it with accuracy as he served up four donuts on the scoreboard after the first.
Bumgarner seemed to be more effective as the night progressed, which included striking out the side in the fifth inning.
But his night suddenly ended on that high note after five innings. Bumgarner finished his evening with one earned run on four hits and one walk to go with six strikeouts.
“I was pretty happy with the way it went,” Bumgarner said. “Going into it, I was a little bit nervous about how I was going to be. I’ve been kinda beat up and a lot of the guys in the clubhouse have been to.”
“When we had the 5-1 lead, we thought it was a good time to try to not completely tax myself and just looking down the road for future stuff more than anything really. I think I would have been fine to pitch another inning or two, but I’m glad it worked out the way it did.”
Lovullo said Bumgarner felt “under the weather,” which was a contributing factor to him being pulled after 81 pitches.
“There was no potential for him to miss the start,” he said. “He and I had a conversation there, and I felt like he emptied his tank there in that fifth inning and gave us what he could and he got to that point and I just felt like it was time to maneuver and go into the bullpen.”
Bumgarner even did work at the dish, registering the team’s first hit in the third with a leadoff single that was the hardest hit ball of the game.
It kicked off a big inning for the D-backs offensively.
With Bumgarner on base, second baseman Josh Vanmeter reached on base on a fielder’s choice and scored on an RBI double from first baseman Asdrubal Cabrera.
Then the merry-go-round started for the D-backs. Cabrera scored on an RBI single off the bat of outfielder David Peralta, who got home after a pair of singles from catcher Carson Kelly and third baseman Eduardo Escobar.
Kelly later scored on a throwing error by Rockies third baseman Josh Fuentes. In total, Colorado had four errors on the night.
Kelly extended his streak of reaching base safely to 15 games — a career best — and Peralta has now hit safely in 11 of his last 12. Josh Rojas chimed in with a 2-run homer in the eighth inning, his second consecutive game with a big fly.
It seemed like everyone contributed offensively, but Cabrera had the biggest night going 2-for-2 with two walks, a single, a double, a run scored and two RBIs.
“It was a good day all the way around,” Lovullo said. “Anytime you win a baseball game the way we did today, there was so many things that took place inside of our game that added up to some big moments.”
The D-backs will have Zac Gallen on the hill Saturday in game three of this four-game series vs the Rockies. First pitch is scheduled for 5:10 p.m. with pregame coverage beginning 40 minutes earlier on 98.7 FM, Arizona’s Sports Station.
Gallen was dominant in his last start against the Braves, allowing just one hit, two walks, and no runs in a seven-inning complete game shutout. Gallen is 1-0 in four career starts against Colorado with a 1.96 ERA.