Last night's Arizona Diamondbacks loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers was all about streaks.
Following the 3-1 win, the NL West-leading Blue Bombers have amassed 12 straight victories at Chavez Ravine for the season. Conversely, the D-Backs have lost three in a row, equaling their worst losing streak this year. (They also were dealt their first sweep of 2009, albeit in a two-game series.) Worst of all, pitcher Max Scherzer (0-3, 3.38 ERA) has yet to notch a single victory in his entire career in the bigs, despite a dozen trips to the mound.
Going into the game, it seemed a sadistic prospect pitting Scherzer, arguably the greenest arm on Arizona's roster, against such league-leading hitmen as Manny Ramirez and Andre Ethier. And it didn't take long for the pitcher to get punished.
After needing seven pitches to get a K against Rafael Furcal, Scherzer watched former D-Back Orlando Hudson turn a 95-mph fastball into a line-drive double, then chose to intentionally walk ManRam (who's .348 batting average is fourth-best in the National League). Ethier then drove in Hudson with an RBI single before getting plated himself soon afterward, thanks to a fielding error by shortstop Josh Wilson. (Ramirez scored after a James Loney groundout.)
Oddly enough, Arizona's only run of the game also was the result of an error when a wild pitch by Dodgers starter Jeff Weaver in the third inning permitted Scherzer to reach home. It wasn't nearly enough, as the Snake Squad continued its penchant for deplorable offense and a pitiful on-base percentage (.275). Even though Scherzer lasted through the sixth inning without any additional scoring by the Dodgers, we're wondering: If Dan Haren's known as "Hard Luck," Scherzer's nickname should be "No Luck."
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Speaking of the unlucky, Arizona's next stop is PETCO Park in San Diego for a two-game series against the Padres, a team that's experiencing a downward spiral. After rocketing to an impressive 9-3 to begin 2009, the Friars quickly fell back to Earth by dropping the next 12 out of 15 games. They would've gotten swept by the Colorado Rockies this week, but managed to eek out a 2-1 win last night in 10 innings that stopped a six-game skid.
Will the D-Backs capitalize on San Diego's (mostly) losing ways? The Sin City oddsmakers don't think so, but tune into Fox Sports Arizona or KTAR-AM 620 tonight at 7:05 to find out. Jon Garland (2-1, 4.94 ERA) will match up with the Padres' Jake Peavy (2-3, 4.58 ERA). Thursday's contest has Dan Haren bringing his 3-3 record and 1.47 ERA (currently the third-best behind Kansas City's Zack Greinke and Mets lefty Johan Santana) against the Padres' Chris Young (2-1, 4.81). First pitch is at 12:40 p.m.
For more info, hit up www.dbacks.com.