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D-backs, Rockies coming off bad losses to begin series

Sportsnaut
Jul 3, 2022; Denver, Colorado, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks third baseman Josh Rojas (10) and Colorado Rockies catcher Elias Diaz (35) talks during a review in the sixth inning at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Arizona Diamondbacks and visiting Colorado Rockies both will be trying to bounce back from tough setbacks when they open a four-game series on Thursday night in Phoenix.

The Diamondbacks blew a 4-0 lead while succumbing 7-5 to the visiting San Francisco Giants on Wednesday, while the Rockies allowed runs on a wild pitch and infield single en route to a 2-1 loss at Los Angeles. The Dodgers’ winning run crossed in the bottom of the ninth.

Colorado scored just six runs while being swept in three games by the Dodgers.

Arizona was looking for a sweep of the Giants but sabotaged that opportunity by allowing two runs in the eighth and three in the ninth on Wednesday.

“A lot went right for a large portion of this game. It’s just things unwound in the eighth and ninth inning,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said afterward. “They matched up against us and we got clipped. That happens in this game.”

The teams just saw each other last weekend in Denver when the Rockies took two of three games.

Colorado scored 17 runs in its two victories, including a 6-5 win on Sunday when C.J. Cron belted two three-run homers.

Cron homered against the Dodgers the following day to reach the 20-homer mark for the fourth time in his career. He leads Colorado in homers and RBIs (65).

Cron has belted 48 homers in 1 1/2 seasons with the Rockies, and he said that some tinkering with his stance and relying more on his hands has allowed him to attack the ball better.

“If you just look at my stance now, not many people hit like that,” Cron told MLB.com. “So, it’s obviously different. But I wasn’t afraid to be different up there. I think I kind of just thought to myself, ‘What am I best at?’ And I kind of just tinkered from there.”

Cron is batting .348 with two homers, two doubles and nine RBIs against Arizona this season.

The teams have split the six meetings. The Diamondbacks are 5-4 over their past nine games overall after Wednesday’s loss.

Still, optimism has been high recently. The team’s 37 wins at the 82-game mark are much better than last season when Arizona was a horrific 22-60.

“I think we’re playing the game, having fun and we’re getting along better,” center fielder Ketel Marte told reporters through a translator. “We are more together and that is what we wanted.”

Left-hander Dallas Keuchel (2-6, 8.27 ERA overall) will be making his third start since joining the Diamondbacks.

The first two outings didn’t go well as he gave up 11 runs (10 earned), 12 hits and six walks in just 9 1/3 innings.

Keuchel, 34, received a no-decision against the Detroit Tigers in his Arizona debut on June 26 and then lost to the Rockies last Saturday in Denver. He gave up seven runs (six earned) and six hits in five innings against the Rockies.

Keuchel was regularly torched in eight starts for the Chicago White Sox earlier this season, going 2-5 with a 7.88. He gave up 49 hits and 20 walks in just 32 innings before being released.

Keuchel is 1-1 with a 6.94 ERA in two career starts against Colorado. Kris Bryant is 4-for-6 against Keuchel, while Cron is just 6-for-29.

Left-hander Austin Gomber (4-7, 6.53) will be on the mound for the Rockies.

Gomber, 28, defeated the Diamondbacks when he was matched against Keuchel last Saturday. He gave up four runs and six hits over 5 2/3 innings in Denver.

He is 2-0 with a 4.67 ERA in four career appearances (three starts) against Arizona. Marte is 4-for-6 with two homers and one double off Gomber, while Josh Rojas is 4-for-5.

–Field Level Media