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Arizona Diamondbacks: Waiting for Reality

Glenn DarbySenior Analyst IApril 17, 2008

The Arizona Diamondbacks keep on waiting...

Just 15 games into the season, with less than 10 percent of the season completed, the Diamondbacks appear to be the team to beat in the National League.

When you can actually recall every loss and explain what went wrong during that game, you know you are in a pretty good position.

 

April 2: Cincinnati Reds, 5-6 loss.

Brandon "Cowardly" Lyon came in after a brilliant Danny Harren start and was rocked.  His three hits and three earned runs on a home run combination was not the sign that Jose Valverde’s detractors had been looking for.

But thankfully, Lyon has settled down and is becoming more reliable.

 

April 3: Cincinnati Reds, 2-3 loss.

This game wrapped up the only series loss for the Diamondbacks this year.

A stud rookie pitcher named Johnny Cuerto came in and struck out 10 hard-swinging Diamondbacks.  Arizona's inability to take pitches hurts them whenever they face hard-throwing pitchers, and this showed in Cincinnati.

Despite that, Justin Upton’s home run was a good sign for the kid who hit only five all of last season.

 

April 13: Colorado Rockies, 5-13 loss.

In a painful roll reversal for the Diamondbacks, the Rockies jumped all over "replacement" pitcher Edgar Gonzalez. The story from the dugout was that he was sick and was dizzy when they removed him in the third.

I would have been dizzy too if I had to watch that many balls going past me.  The rough start was only exacerbated by poor performances from the bullpen against a powerful Rockies lineup.

 

April 14: San Francisco Giants, 4-5 loss.

Diamondbacks losses seem to come in pairs in 2008, but thankfully the losing streaks end there.

In what should have been a 4-0 game, the Diamondbacks' defense had been left at the airport with their luggage.  Stephen Drew and Mark Reynolds made costly errors that cost Randy Johnson three runs and Chad "Biggie" Qualls two. 

Reynolds’ defense is becoming a liability, so he could move to first when Tracy comes back and Jackson needs a day off.

 

There you go. Those are all the Diamondbacks’ losses so far on the season.

Closer problems, hitting problems, starter problems, defense problems.  Each issue has only showed up once. This is hopefully a sign of continued improvement.  

That being said, Jake Peavy has yet to step onto Chase Field, where those glaring hitting issues may appear. 

The Diamondbacks haven't played on turf or "hard" grass yet, which could creating more fielding blunders.

Lyon will need to stand up to powerful hitters more often as the year goes on.

Finally, the Doug Davis situation still has at least five more weeks until it can get resolved, meaning that Edgar Gonzalez, Jailen Peguero, Yusmeiro Petit, or someone else is going to need to figure out how to pitch every fifth day and do it at the same caliber as Webb, Haren, Johnson, and Owings.

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