PHOENIX, Ariz. – The Arizona Diamondbacks needed an urgent win at home on Saturday against the San Francisco Giants to pull out of their current tailspin, but after a hot offensive start, their bats went cold again, and they could not overcome another subpar outing by starting pitching to stop their losing streak from hitting six in a row in a 7-4 loss.
Manager Torey Lovullo named Zack Godley as the starter of this game on Friday after a lengthy evaluation. It was an understandably difficult decision as Godley struggled this season as a starter but proved to be productive out of the bullpen as a long reliever. Five of his last seven outings in relief have been scoreless, going 2-0 with a save and a 3.44 ERA.
But it didn’t take long for things to turn on Godley. After a quick first inning, he gave up a leadoff single to Kevin Pillar, followed by an RBI double to Alex Dickerson and an RBI single to Brandon Crawford.
He seemed to get back on track to start the third, but after getting the first two outs in the inning, he gave up a pair of singles followed by another two-RBI double to Dickerson and another RBI single to Crawford.
Dickerson has been an absolute problem for the D-backs in this series. The left fielder has five hits and nine RBI so far in these two games for the Giants. His production was the difference in this one.
Godley went four innings, allowing nine hits and five earned runs with no strikeouts and two walks. He managed to have a clean fourth inning, but the pitch count ended his night and he was pinch-hit for by notorious pinch hitter Zack Greinke.
“I couldn’t put guys away,” said Godley on his outing. “I got ahead of guys, threw the ball where I wanted, all the way up until the point where I got guys 0-2 and 1-2 and I just couldn’t put guys away.”
After the big first inning, the D-backs once again saw the offense fall flat. They went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position after that inning, with their only other run scoring on a Crawford error in the third.
David Peralta did everything he could on his Freight Train bobblehead night to make the win possible. The right fielder went 2-3 with a single, a double, two walks, and a run scored. He is the 12th player in franchise history to record multiple hits on his bobblehead giveaway night.
Rookie Domingo Leyba was called up on Saturday and made his major league debut in this game, pinch-hitting for relief pitcher Stefan Crichton in the sixth inning. He started his career by beating the shift on a liner to left field.
“I don’t know what we’re going to do,” said Lovullo on the state of the starting rotation and where they go from here with two spots to figure out. “But we’re going to sit down and continue to talk about it and see what our best option is five days from now.”
“We’re definitely in a tough spot, but I know that there’s a group of guys in there that believe in one another, that will keep fighting together until this thing gets going on the other side.”
Arizona will attempt to circumvent being swept at home in their second consecutive series in game three.
The D-backs have only won four series at Chase Field this season, and they have not won a single series against a division rival. They will look to avoid the sweep on Sunday with Merrill Kelly on the mound. First pitch is scheduled for 1:10 p.m. with pregame coverage beginning 40 minutes earlier on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station.
Kelly is 7-7 in 15 starts this season with a 3.99 ERA. In his four starts this month, Kelly is 3-1 with a 2.22 ERA and an opponent batting average of .194.