Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Ian Kennedy fell into a major hole against the San Francisco Giants on Monday evening at Chase Field, having given up a total of three runs in the first two innings. However, that's not what cost the D-Backs the game.
Nope, Kennedy was able to overcome his shaky start and emerge from said predicament, especially after Arizona's hitters rocketed four homers into the seats during the fourth inning. And even after Captain Redbeard unleashed a wild pitch in the following frame, allowing the Jints to tie it at 4-4, a victory was still within his team's grasp. (Remember, they're 6-0 in extra innings this season.)
In fact, the blame for D-backs's 6-4 loss last night probably lies with manager Kirk Gibson, who really should've pulled Brad Ziegler before the reliever blew it in the eighth.
In that fateful inning, Ziegler -- who, like most of Arizona's bullpen, is weary from overuse during the flurry of close games the Snakes have been playing in lately -- loaded the bases after a Nick Noonan double and back-to-back walks to Gregor Blanco and Brandon Crawford.
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One Brandon Belt swat up the middle and the Giants had the win, nullifying the spectacular fourth where Arizona's Eric Chavez, Jason Kubel (a two-run jack to boot, his first dinger since returning from the DL), and Martín Prado all got homers off San Francisco's Matt Cain.
Diamondbacks radio broadcasters Greg Schulte and Tom Candiotti speculated that Gibson didn't have much of choice due to his overtaxed bullpen but could've conceivably yanked Ziegler in favor of fellow reliever David Hernandez either before or after the twin base-on-balls situation.
There's no rest for the weary, however, as Arizona will face the Giants again tonight at Chase Field. Trevor Cahill (1-3, 3.00 ERA) goes for his second win versus Madison Bumgarner (3-0, 1.87). First pitch is at 6:40 p.m. TV: Fox Sports Arizona. Radio: KTAR 620 AM. More info: www.dbacks.com.