Wild Weekend For Diamondbacks: Lose Two Of Three To Dodgers; Young An All Star; Willis Released
After manager A.J. Hinch and General Manager Josh Byrnes were given the boot Thursday night, former Dodger Kirk Gibson was named interim manager -- just as the Dodgers were arriving in town for a weekend series.
The series can be summed up in three simple words: good, bad and ugly.
Come to think of it, that pretty much describes the Snakes season so far this year.
Friday's game, Gibson's managerial debut, was all smiles and roses as the D-Backs' offense pounded out 13 hits while defeating the Dodgers 12-5.
Chris Young, batting in the lead-off spot, was 3-5 with five RBIs and ignited a boost to the offense. Players, coaches and fans around the league have obviously taken notice of Young's productive season as he was named to the National League All-Star team on Sunday.
Edwin Jackson, in his first game since his no-hitter, wasn't incredibly sharp as he worked through six innings. But with the D-Backs offense providing a bevy of run support, he didn't need to be.
After the game an exhausted Gibson delivered a short but sweet post-game talk to his team: "Fuck yeah," Gibson told the team.
For the series' next two games, however, the phrase should have been "WTF?"
In game two against LA, every single aspect of the D-Backs game was awful, most notably the defense which committed six errors, a new franchise-record. Shortstop Tony Abreu had three while Rusty Ryal had a pair at first base and Mark Reynolds had a wild throw from the hot corner.
The offense was lacking as well, only scoring once as the Dodgers won 14-1.
Starter Rodrigo Lopez pitched 3.2 innings and gave up 9 total runs. Only two were earned however, thanks to the ugly Little League fielding camp that was going on behind him.
Lopez also issued a three-pitch walk. Apparently the coaches and players were tuned out of the game by the second inning.
Dontrelle Willis, making his debut from the bullpen, was hit for three runs in only an inning of work. The new regime of Gibson and GM Jerry Dipoto, obviously unimpressed with the decision to acquire the lefty, released him on Sunday, a month after Hinch and Byrnes gave it a desperate shot.
The D-Backs stagnant offense continued in the series finale on Sunday as the team struck out 16 times, a season worst mark in a 3-1 loss.
Dan Haren, one of the lone bright spots on the team, was strong again, pitching seven innings while only giving up one run.
But with the game tied at one heading into the eighth, the D-Backs bullpen showed up and performed as predicted: terribly
Aaron Heilman, the D-Backs best reliever this season, made a mistake on an inside fastball to LA's Matt Kemp, who belted the pitch for a two-run home run.
While Friday's game showed Gibson the potential the Snakes have, the final two games of the weekend were a tough reminder of the present.
Gibson's fire and passion should hopefully help this team play better baseball in the final few months.