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Series Preview: Diamondbacks at Pirates

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MLB: Chicago White Sox at Arizona Diamondbacks Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Yes, it appears the Diamondbacks are good.

Arizona dropped the final two games of its four-game series at Milwaukee, but it has lost just three games total since facing the Pirates on May 14 in Phoenix, winning 10 of 13 in that span.

The Pirates (23-28) lost two of three at home to the Mets, getting creamed in both losses.

Season Series (2-2)

May 11: Diamondbacks 2, Pirates 1

May 12: Diamondbacks 11, Pirates 4

May 13: Pirates 4, Diamondbacks 3

May 14: Pirates 6, Diamondbacks 4, 10 innings

Schedule

Monday, 4:05 p.m. - Randall Delgado (1-0, 3.82 ERA) vs. Trevor Williams (2-3, 5.93)

Tuesday, 7:05 p.m. - Robbie Ray (4-3, 3.45) vs. Ivan Nova (5-3, 2.83)

Wednesday, 12:35 p.m. - Zack Godley (1-1, 1.99) vs. Chad Kuhl (1-5, 6.29)

Diamondbacks

31-21 (31-21 Pythag, 4.96 RS/G, 3.98 RA/G)

Offense

The D-backs have regressed a bit, as AZ Snake Pit points out, but are still quite good. The position players as a group sit fifth in the majors with 9.0 fWAR. Jake Lamb has 14 dingers. Paul Goldschmidt has 11. It’s not that I ever forget Goldschmidt can run the bases well, too, but his 3.9 BaseRuns pop off the page. A.J. Pollock is on the 10-day disabled list with a strained groin, so it looks like more Gregor Blanco for the Snakes.

Pitching

Arizona’s starters are the majors’ best unit by fWAR, at 5.8. The Bucs get a bit of a reprieve, missing Zack Greinke and facing Randall Delgado, who is filling in for the DL’ed Taijuan Walker. Robbie Ray is striking out 29.8 percent of batters, but walking 11.7 percent. Zack Godley has had five strong starts this year, getting 66.2 percent groundouts. Fernando Rodney is a light at the end of the bullpen tunnel, but Andrew Chafin has been quite good, as has T.J. McFarland, but McFarland’s underlying numbers don’t back him as much.

Outlook

It doesn’t look good for the Pirates, coming off some bad losses with a really good team, albeit one they’ve been able to beat at times, coming in. The Bucs had a little opening in the schedule to make something happen against the Phillies, Braves and Mets, but went 5-5. We’ve seen Pirates’ teams whose success didn’t quite have the shape we expected, struggling against lesser lights and beating up on good competition. On the other hand, we’ve seen plenty of Pirates teams that just weren’t very good.

Poll

Who wins this series?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    Pirates sweep!
    (3 votes)
  • 31%
    Pirates, 2-1
    (26 votes)
  • 49%
    Diamondbacks, 2-1
    (41 votes)
  • 15%
    D-backs sweep. Sale the team.
    (13 votes)
83 votes total Vote Now