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hongwei28
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January 31, 2019 6:46 pm  

PHOENIX — As the second half of the season commences [url= http://www.authenticsatlantafalcons.com/cheap-ito-smith-jersey]Ito Smith Color Rush Jersey[/url] , both Arizona and San Francisco have reasons to feel confident as they prepare for the third game of a three-game weekend series Sunday.

Both are nearing full health, and the NL West remains wide open as the Diamondbacks, Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers are within 3 1/2 games of each other entering July.

Arizona survived a 2-15 stretch in May and is playing as well as it did in the early going, when it did not lose any of its first 12 series. The Giants have won nine of 11 after going 18-10 in June, their first winning month since June, 2016.

“I know that we got off to a great start and hit a little downturn and fought back,” Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said when asked about his takeaways from the first half.

“The obvious thing is, we are playing very good baseball now. We’ve grown and learned and become stronger and tougher because of the situation we walked through in May. They have never pointed their finger at anything or any anyone in an particular situation or moment.

“When it didn’t go well, they were accountable. They played united baseball. We’re right in the middle of a story that we continue to want to tell the way we are telling it.”

Arizona right-hander Zack Godley will oppose Giants left-hander Derek Holland in the final game of the series at Chase Field on Sunday afternoon. The Giants begin a three-game series in Colorado on Monday while the Diamondbacks will host a three-game series against St. Louis.

“Considering everything that is happened, we are right in the thick of things, which is where you want to be,” San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said.

“If you would have told me what we have to deal with – three starters out, (Joe) Panik out, (Evan) Longoria out. Sure [url= http://www.officialducks.com/authentic-adidas-cam-fowler-jersey]Adidas Cam Fowler Jersey[/url] , no question you take it. I think it is going to be tight in September. Hopefully we’re right there. That’s our plan.”

Right-handers Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija could made their next starts in the majors after prolonged absences due to injury, and Cueto would be particularly welcome. He was 3-0 with an 0.84 ERA in five starts while holding opponents to a .150 batting average before going on the disabled list because of shoulder soreness in the first week of May.

In the interim, Dereck Rodriguez and Andrew Suarez have pitched well. The Giants also have received only five starts from Madison Bumgarner, who opened the season on the disabled list before returning in early June.

Arizona outfielders A.J. Pollock and Steven Souza Jr. also are nearing a return from the disabled list after missing considerable time. The Diamondbacks also lost starters Taijuan Walker and Robbie Ray for 58 days before returning.

Pollock and Souza Jr. are on rehab assignments for Triple-A Reno, and Pollock is likely to return before the All-Star break. Pollock was slashing .293/.349/.620 with 10 doubles, 11 homers and nine stolen bases in 43 games before suffering a fractured thumb trying to make a diving catch in center field in the ninth inning of a 7-2 loss to Milwaukee on May 14.

“You think about what the (injury) losses are,” Lovullo said “It’s been a very interesting season. I think the most resilient teams are the ones that understand and accept what’s happening day by day, whether it is good or bad, and move on to the next day as quickly as possible.

“We are a resilient group. We can turn the page quickly, no matter what the results are.”

Godley, 9-5 with a 4.58 ERA, is one victory short of NL leaders Max Scherzer, Jon Lester and Aaron Nola, in part because he has received 4.63 runs of support in his 16 starts. His 1.52 WHIP is 44th and last among qualified NL starters [url= http://www.officialducks.com/authentic-adidas-andrew-cogliano-jersey]Adidas Andrew Cogliano Jersey[/url] , and he has made seven quality starts.

Godley is 1-1 with a 6.10 ERA in two starts against the Giants this season and is 2-2 with a 6.97 ERA in six career appearances, four starts, against them. Godley has pitched his best at home this season, going 4-1 with a 2.89 ERA in six starts.

Holland (5-7, 4.24) is coming off arguably his best outing of the season, although he did not receive a decision in a 3-2 victory over Colorado. Holland gave up one run on six hits in a season-high 6 2/3 innings while striking out a season high eight. It was his longest appearance since he went eight innings against Seattle on May 21, 2017.

He is 0-1 in two starts against the Diamondbacks, both with Texas. Holland is 3-5 with a 3.94 ERA in nine road starts this season. He has never pitched in Chase Field.

After snapping the longest losing streak of his career in his previous start, Marcus Stroman went straight back to struggling.

Todd Frazier hit a two-run homer, Brandon Nimmo reached base three times and the New York Mets beat Marcus Stroman and the Toronto Blue Jays 6-3 on Wednesday night.

Stroman (1-6) lost six straight decisions before beating Detroit last Friday but couldn’t build on that performance. He allowed six runs and six hits in 4 2/3 innings, raising his ERA from 6.02 to 6.50.

”I just didn’t have a feel for anything from pitch one,” Stroman said.

Frazier gave the Mets the lead with a drive to center field off the right-hander in a five-run fifth.

Now in his fifth season, Stroman was expected to be a steadying presence in Toronto’s rotation. Instead, he has dealt with a sore shoulder that sidelined him for more than a month [url= http://www.officialducks.com/authentic-adidas-corey-perry-jersey]Adidas Corey Perry Jersey[/url] , and been hit hard when healthy enough to pitch.

Mets manager Mickey Callaway, a former pitcher and pitching coach, said location is at the root of Stroman’s rough stretch.

”Everything is just up a little bit from what I’ve seen in the past,” Callaway said. ”I think, from a pitching coach’s perspective, for him to have his good sinker and his good slider, he’s got to make sure he gets the ball down. That’s kind of how he lived in the past and what his success was all about, getting guys to chase below the zone.”

Former teammate Jose Bautista flied out in his first two at-bats against Stroman but delivered an RBI single in the fifth.

”His stuff was moving, he just wasn’t locating as well as I’ve seen him do in the past from the outfield,” Bautista said.

Stroman, from Long Island, had never faced the Mets before.

Seth Lugo (3-3) pitched three innings of relief for the win. Jeurys Familia closed for his 16th save in 20 opportunities.

Wilmer Flores had two hits and Kevin Plawecki scored twice for the Mets, who had lost 11 of 13.

Toronto’s Kendrys Morales hit a solo home run in the second but the Mets answered on Nimmo’s RBI single in the third. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. restored Toronto’s lead with a two-out RBI single in the fourth before Stroman unraveled in the fifth.

Flores led off with a single and scored on Frazier’s 10th home run. Bautista and Asdrubal Cabrera chased Stroman with consecutive RBI singles, and Michael Conforto capped the outburst with a run-scoring single off reliever Luis Santos.

Making his second major league career start [url= http://www.officialducks.com/authentic-adidas-ryan-getzlaf-jersey]Adidas Ryan Getzlaf Jersey[/url] , New York right-hander Corey Oswalt allowed two runs and five hits in four innings.

”That’s a good leap forward for him,” Callaway said. ”He looked a lot better.”

LOOK OUT BELOW

Mets relievers Tyler Bashlor, Jerry Blevins and Robert Gsellman, and outfielder Kevin Kaczmarksi, ascended Toronto’s CN Tower earlier in the day for the Edge Walk attraction, which lets visitors circle the exterior of the observation deck. The tower’s official Twitter account posted a photo of the quartet.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mets: RHP Noah Syndergaard (right index finger) will make a rehab start for Class A Brooklyn on Sunday. … C Devin Mesoraco passed concussion tests again but was not in the starting lineup. Mesoraco was hit in the head in back-to-back innings Tuesday, once by a ball and once by a bat. … RHP Zack Wheeler will get an extra day of rest before his next start. Wheeler will be pushed back to Monday, when the Mets play a doubleheader against Philadelphia.

Blue Jays: An MRI on RHP Marco Estrada revealed a mild strain in his left gluteal muscle. Estrada left Tuesday’s start after just 12 pitches. It was not yet known whether he’ll be placed on the disabled list. … RHP Preston Guilmet was designated for assignment and LHP Tim Mayza was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo. Toronto selected Santos and RHP Rhiner Cruz from Triple-A. … RHP Seunghwan Oh was available after missing Tuesday’s game because of flu-like symptoms.

UP NEXT

Mets: RHP Jacob deGrom (5-4) pitches Friday night at home against Tampa Bay. The right-hander leads the majors with a 1.84 ERA but has lost four of his past five starts despite not allowing more than three earned runs in any of them. Tampa Bay is expected to open with right-handed reliever Ryne Stanek (1-2, 1.98).

Blue Jays: RHP Sam Gaviglio (2-2, 3.97) goes Friday night in the opener of a three-game series against the Yankees. Gaviglio is 0-2 with a 4.78 ERA in six outings since winning his first start for Toronto. RHP Sonny Gray (5-6, 5.44) starts for New York.

 


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