PHOENIX – Arizona Diamondbacks ace Zack Greinke has been outstanding the first half of this season, but an uncommon disastrous seventh inning mixed with a lack of the offense we saw from this team on their recent road trip led to a 6-4 loss on Wednesday against the Colorado Rockies.
Greinke entered the game leading the National League in quality starts at 13 and second in wins, walks per 9.0 innings pitched, baserunners per 9.0 innings pitched and WHIP. He started the game hot, allowing only two hits and no runs through his first three innings pitched.
The D-backs were able to manufacture run support for Greinke in the second inning when Eduardo Escobar walked and later scored on an error by Rockies second baseman Ryan McMahon.
Christian Walker singled and also scored a run in the inning after a Carson Kelly sac fly and a fielder’s choice by Greinke brought him home. Unfortunately, the team couldn’t generate much more offense than that against Jon Gray and the Rockies.
Colorado evened the score in the fourth inning when Daniel Murphy blasted a center-cut fastball from Greinke to the pool for a two-run homer, his sixth of the season.
They then ended Greinke’s night in the seventh inning when a McMahon two-RBI double drove in Nolan Arenando and Murphy. The Rockies added one more run by way of their four singles in the inning.
Greinke did it all, including trying to turn a well-hit single into a double in the fifth inning.
He went seven innings, allowing 11 hits, five earned runs and no walks with two strikeouts in his third loss of the season.
“As far as Zack goes, he was in and out of the zone with all of his pitches. He was basically cruising,” said manager Torey Lovullo after the game. “Until that one portion of the seventh inning, I think he was very, very pitch efficient.”
“You know, you gotta keep pounding away at things. We’re grinding against this team,” he added. “They’re a good team, but they’ve beat us seven games in a row. I’m taking that kind of personal.”
The D-backs were able to add one more run in the bottom of the seventh that started with Tim Locastro reaching when he was hit by a pitch, his 12th of the year in 93 plate appearances, and scoring on a David Peralta RBI single. Locastro’s 12 HBP prior to the All-Star Game is a club record.
The late-inning comeback effort was minimal, even with Kevin Cron dropping a pinch-hit solo shot to straight away center field in the bottom of the ninth, and Arizona loses their third game in a row and seventh in a row to the Rockies.
Robbie Ray will take the mound for the D-backs as they look to avoid getting swept in the finale of this series on Thursday. Ray is 5-4 in 15 starts this season with a 3.83 ERA and 106 strikeouts. First pitch is scheduled for 12:40 p.m. on ESPN 620 AM.
In 14 career starts against the Rockies, Ray is 4-5 with a 5.57 ERA and an opponent batting average of .298.