This was almost the ultimate disaster in a season chockfull of them.
On the same day that Brandon Webb had season-killing surgery, the Arizona Diamondbacks were in New York's Citi Field, putting the hurt on the host in an attempt to win three out of four from the struggling Metropolitans. The spacious new ballpark, known for neutralizing the league's power-hitting elite, couldn't hold the D-Backs, especially Mark Reynolds, who celebrated his 26th year of birth by tattooing two dongs (31, 32) off of Nelson Figueroa (0-2). The just-recalled-from-Triple-A-Buffalo hurler didn't make it out of the second inning, giving up six runs on 10 knocks in his 1 2/3 innings of work.
With Dan Haren (11-6) on the mound, the game should have been over. But this is baseball, and on the same night that the Detroit Tigers rallied from a 5-0 first-inning deficit to beat the Baltimore Orioles on a walk-off homer, the scrappy Mets clawed back into the game. New York added a run in the third, three in the fifth, and then cut Arizona's lead to one in the sixth on Daniel Murphy's deep drive. (Haren lasted seven innings, giving up all five earned runs on eight hits while only fanning three.)
From there, the D-Backs' bullpen nailed this one down. (No, for real. They actually did.) Jon Rauch worked out of a self-created jam in the eighth and Chad Qualls picked up his 20th save with a perfect ninth, and Arizona took the series from the Mets.
Next up for the 47-59 Diamondbacks is a three-game donnybrook with the 45-60 Pittsburgh Pirates, a squad that Arizona smoked just more than a week ago at Chase Field. The D-Backs took three out of four from the chronically pathetic Pirates, with the last two wins coming by shutout (7-0 and 9-0).
Tonight, Pittsburgh - who is coming off of a four-game series split with the equally poopy Washington Nationals - will send Zach Duke (9-9, 3.26 ERA) to the hill to face Arizona's Yusmeiro Petit (1-5, 6.75 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 4:05 p.m. TV: Fox Sports Arizona. Radio: KTAR-620 AM. More info at www.dbacks.com.
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