Zack Greinke talks about the breaking ball the Padres’ Erick Aybar hit for a home run, his only blemish in a 1-0 loss in San Diego.
1 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo discusses the pitchers’ duel that ended in a 1-0 loss against the San Diego Padres.
2 of 48
Diamondbacks catcher Jeff Mathis talks about the pitch Erick Aybar hit for a homer off Zack Greinke, and about the effectiveness of Padres right-hander Jhoulys Chacin.
3 of 48
Shelby Miller won for the second time this season, beating the San Diego Padres on Tuesday night at Petco Park.
4 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo talked about Shelby Miller’s strong outing in an 11-2 win over the Padres.
5 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo after his team rallied to beat the Dodgers 3-2 on Monday night. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
6 of 48
Diamondbacks lefty Robbie Ray walked four batters early but settled in and struck out 10 in six innings against the Dodgers on Monday. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
7 of 48
azcentral sports’ Jay Dieffenbach and Dan Bickley discuss Zack Greinke’s slump and the Cardinals and Sun Devils continuing their preparations for the season.
8 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo talks about Fernando Rodney’s save, Taijuan Walker’s performance and his team’s win against the Dodgers on Sunday. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
9 of 48
Diamondbacks right-hander Taijuan Walker gave up just one run in five innings against the Dodgers on Sunday. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
10 of 48
Diamondbacks catcher Chris Iannetta talks about his home run against Dodgers lefty Rich Hill and the performance of teammate Taijuan Walker in Sunday’s win. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
11 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo explains why he used closer Fernando Rodney with his team trailing in the eighth inning on Saturday night. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
12 of 48
Diamondbacks left-hander Patrick Corbin gave up five runs (three earned) in six innings vs. the Dodgers in Arizona’s 8-4 loss to Los Angeles on Saturday night. Nick PIecoro/azcentral sports
13 of 48
Manager Torey Lovullo talks about Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw’s dominance vs. the Diamondbacks on Friday night.
14 of 48
Diamondbacks right-hander Zack Greinke gave up five runs in five innings against the Dodgers on Friday night, coming up short in his matchup against Clayton Kershaw.
15 of 48
Shot Clock: azcentral sports’ Mark Faller and Dan Bickley discuss the Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers series and the NBA playoffs.
16 of 48
Diamondbacks RHP Zack Greinke and Dodgers LHP Clayton Kershaw will combine to make more than $69 million this season.
17 of 48
Diamondbacks right-hander Shelby Miller took the blame for Wednesday night’s loss to the Giants.
18 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo talked about Shelby Miller’s outing and his hitters’ struggles with guys in scoring position.
19 of 48
Now that the Cubs have their rings, a look back the Diamondbacks’ World Series ring from 2001.
20 of 48
Diamondbacks center fielder A.J. Pollock talks about his play on Aaron Hill’s third-inning drive and Jake Lamb’s go-ahead, three-run triple.
21 of 48
Lefty Robbie Ray worked around five walks and was helped by his defense in the Diamondbacks’ win over the Giants on Tuesday night.
22 of 48
Diamondbacks right-hander Taijuan Walker said he made a mistake by trying to throw home on a strange play against the Giants in Monday’s loss in San Francisco. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
23 of 48
Arizona Diamondbacks’ Patrick Corbin talks about his personal performance so far this season after the team swept the series against the Indians, April 9, 2017. (Bob McManaman/azcentral sports)
24 of 48
Jay Dieffenbach and Dan Bickley disagree on the NBA MVP and share their thoughts on the D-Backs’ hot start.
25 of 48
Arizona Diamondbacks’ Torey Lovullo discusses the team’s win against the Indians, sweeping the series, April 9, 2017. (Bob McManaman/azcentral sports)
26 of 48
Breaking down the Diamondbacks’ fantastic start to the 2017 season.
27 of 48
Right-hander Zack Greinke gave up just one run in 6 2/3 innings against the Indians as the Diamondbacks rolled to another victory.
28 of 48
Arizona Diamondbacks’ Torey Lovullo talks about the team’s ups and downs in a win against the Indians, April 7, 2017. (Bob McManaman/azcentral sports)
29 of 48
D-Backs’ Shelby Miller talks about his 2017 season start in a win against the Cleveland Indians, April 7, 2017. (Bob McManaman/azcentral sports)
30 of 48
azcentral sports’ Mark Faller and Dan Bickley discuss the D-Backs’ start to the season as well as the retirement of Shane Doan.
31 of 48
Diamondbacks outfielder David Peralta discusses Thursday’s win over the Giants.
32 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo discusses his team’s 3-1 start to the season.
33 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo on using humidor for baseballs at Chase Field.
34 of 48
Starting pitcher Taijuan Walker discusses his first start in a Diamondbacks uniform on Wednesday against the Giants. Bob McManaman/azcentral sports
35 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo talks about his club’s 8-6 win over the Giants on Wednesday. Bob McManaman/azcentral sports
36 of 48
The Diamondbacks need a shortstop. Scott Bordow and Jay Dieffenbach discuss that and the Hamilton hazing scandal in the Shot Clock.
37 of 48
Diamondbacks shortstop Chris Owings talks about his error in the Giants’ five-run fifth inning.
38 of 48
Diamondbacks lefty Patrick Corbin talks about his outing vs. the Giants and his struggles to retire Hunter Pence.
39 of 48
The Arizona Diamondbacks dedicated Paul Goldschmidt Field in Goodyear on April 4, 2017. It’s the 39th “Diamonds Back” Field in Arizona. Video: Arizona Diamondbacks
40 of 48
Former Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals slugger had an emergency brain procedure to address a brain hemorrhage.
USA TODAY Sports
41 of 48
You can stream baseball online using MLB.TV, but the service does have restrictions.
Reviewed.com – Jeremy Stamas
42 of 48
Diamondbacks shortstop Chris Owings delivered the game-winning hit on Sunday vs. the Giants.
43 of 48
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo talks about the hug he gave walk-off hero Chris Owings and about his first win in his new job.
44 of 48
Diamondbacks right-hander Zack Greinke gave up two runs in five innings against the San Francisco Giants on Sunday at Chase Field.
45 of 48
Diamondbacks insider Nick Piecoro and Jay Dieffenbach talk about the upcoming baseball season. The lineup appears to be solid. What about the pitching staff? Video: Cheryl Evans/azcentral sports
46 of 48
USA TODAY Sports released its annual list of players to watch for in the upcoming season.
USA TODAY Sports
47 of 48
The Diamondbacks had their photos taken on Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2017 at Salt River Fields.
48 of 48
D-Backs’ Zack Greinke on his performance vs. Padres
Torey Lovullo on his team’s ‘frustrating’ loss vs. Padres
Jeff Mathis on D-Backs’ 1-0 loss to Padres
Shelby Miller on his win vs. Padres
Torey Lovullo on D-Backs’ win over Padres
Manager Torey Lovullo after D-Backs split series vs. Dodgers
Robbie Ray on his 10-strikeout game vs. Dodgers
Shot Clock: Time to worry about Zack Greinke?
Torey Lovullo on D-Backs’ win 3-1 win over Dodgers
Taijuan Walker tosses five strong innings vs. Dodgers
D-Backs’ Chris Iannetta on facing Rich Hill, catching Taijuan Walker
Torey Lovullo on usage of Fernando Rodney vs. Dodgers on Saturday
D-Backs lefty Patrick Corbin talks about his outing vs. Dodgers
Torey Lovullo after D-Backs’ 7-1 loss to the Dodgers
D-Backs’ Zack Greinke on his loss vs. Dodgers
Why series vs. Dodgers is big for D-Backs
Greinke-Kershaw matchup is incredibly expensive
Shelby Miller says loss vs. Giants is ‘definitely on me’
Manager Torey Lovullo on D-Backs’ rubber-match loss to Giants
Remembering the Diamondbacks’ championship rings
A.J. Pollock talks about his big catch in D-Backs’ win over Giants
Robbie Ray after tossing 6 2/3 shutout innings vs. Giants
Taijuan Walker discusses his errant throw vs. Giants
Diamondbacks’ Patrick Corbin describes personal performance
Shot Clock: NBA MVP and surprising D-Backs
Torey Lovullo on D-Backs’ sweep against the Indians
Diamondbacks’ hot start by the numbers
Zack Greinke after strong start vs. Indians
Torey Lovullo talks about the D-Backs’ win against the Indians
D-Backs’ Shelby Miller describes starting his 2017 season
Shot Clock: What D-Backs’ good start means
David Peralta on hot start: ‘We’re ready for anybody’
D-Backs manager Lovullo on starting year 3-1
D-Backs manager Lovullo on using humidor for baseballs
Taijuan Walker on his first D-Backs start
Torey Lovullo on D-Backs’ win over Giants
Shot Clock: Answer to D-Backs’ shortstop question?
Chris Owings talks about his fifth-inning error
Patrick Corbin after loss to Giants
Diamondbacks dedicate ‘Paul Goldschmidt Field’
Former Dodgers star Pedro Guerrero in critical condition
How to watch every baseball game in 2017
Chris Owings discusses his walk-off hit vs. Giants
Torey Lovullo on his emotional first win as D-Backs’ manager
Zack Greinke after his start vs. Giants on Opening Day
What is in store for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2017?
MLB’s 100 Names to Know for 2017
Behind the scenes at Diamondbacks Photo Day
SAN DIEGO – The curveball flipped out of Zack Greinke’s hand and arched downward, parabola-like, toward the lower, outside corner of the strike zone. Greinke hopped off the mound and nodded his approval toward the San Diego Padres’ Erick Aybar.
Greinke was impressed Aybar was able to lay off the pitch, but he figured if he followed it up with a similar one, he might get him to chase. The breaking ball he threw, however, wasn’t barely off the plate, like he wanted it. It was down the middle. And Aybar destroyed it.
Aybar’s eighth-inning solo homer was the only blemish for Greinke and the Diamondbacks in a game they would lose 1-0, a breezy, two-hour, 13-minute outcome that snapped a three-game win streak and set up a rubber match with the Padres on Thursday evening. If the Diamondbacks win, they’ll not only take the series, they’ll return home with a 5-5 mark on this 10-game trip.
“I definitely could have made a better pitch right there,” Greinke said. “It was a tough loss.”
BOX SCORE: Padres 1, Diamondbacks 0
As good as Greinke was, Padres right-hander Jhoulys Chacin was a touch better. With a mix of sinkers and sliders, Chacin was able to limit the Diamondbacks, the team he pitched for briefly in 2015, to just three hits in eight innings. Padres closer Brandon Maurer worked a scoreless ninth, putting the finishing touches on the Diamondbacks’ first shutout of the year, the nadir of an offensive trend that has been developing over the past 10 games.
Other than Tuesday night, when the Diamondbacks exploded for 11 runs while drawing nine walks and taking advantage of a mistake-prone Padres team, their offense has been largely dormant. They did not score more than four runs in any of the eight games prior to Tuesday, and over the past 10, they are hitting .211 as a team and averaging just 3.3 runs. Take away Tuesday night’s game and they’re averaging 2.4 runs in the other nine.
They managed only four hits on Wednesday night and had just three at-bats with a runner in scoring position. Two of those at-bats came in the ninth, after A.J. Pollock singled and stole second off Maurer. But Maurer got Paul Goldschmidt to bounce to third, then struck out Jake Lamb to end it, getting him to chase on a full-count change-up in the dirt.
“We felt comfortable knowing, once A.J. got on, that we were going to have the strength of our lineup coming up,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. “Maurer made some key pitches in key moments against some very good hitters so you have to give him some credit.”
It left the Aybar at-bat as the most important one of the night. Greinke threw him seven pitches, none of which were in the strike zone except for the final one, a slider that hung over the heart of the plate. Before that, with the count 2-2, Greinke went to his curveball, a pitch that appeared to barely miss the outside corner.
Greinke said he could tell it was off the plate, though that didn’t lessen his appreciation of Aybar’s ability to take it.
“As soon as I threw it, I said out loud, ‘Nice take,’” Greinke said. “Because I was like, ‘I can’t believe you took it.’ … It was a really tempting pitch. I was surprised he didn’t swing at it.”
Both he and catcher Jeff Mathis did not second-guess what Greinke threw next; they just think it was a matter of poor execution.
“I wanted it to be probably similar to the curveball the pitch before, where it was probably a ball but really close to tempt him into swinging,” Greinke said. “I thought if I threw it in that spot, if I threw it for, like, a ball, but not too far a ball, that he would swing. But I threw a bad one.”
Greinke, whose fastball velocity had been trending up since the start of the season, saw it dip back down to its spring training levels. He cracked 90 mph only a handful of times and averaged 88.8 mph, according to data available at BrooksBaseball.
But the outing was proof of how effective he can be even with a below-average fastball; he had nearly perfect location the entire night, with the exception of the pitch to Aybar. After giving up five runs in five innings against the Dodgers on Friday, Greinke finished with an eight-inning complete game, allowing just five hits and one walk.
“The command was really good, probably the best command I’ve had,” Grienke said. “That was a good thing.”
Reach Piecoro at (602) 444-8680 or nick.[email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @nickpiecoro.
Diamondbacks at Padres
When: 6:10 p.m.
Where: Petco Park, San Diego.
Pitchers: Diamondbacks LHP Patrick Corbin (1-2, 2.81) vs. Padres LHP Clayton Richard (1-2, 3.60).
TV/Radio: FSAZ/KMVP-FM (98.7), KHOV-FM (105.1).
Corbin was in trouble throughout much of his start last week at Dodger Stadium, but he managed to navigate his way through six innings, giving up five runs (three earned). … He has just seven strikeouts and seven walks in 16 innings. … Corbin logged 13 2/3 innings against the Padres last season, posting a 3.95 ERA with six walks and 14 strikeouts. … Richard tossed eight scoreless innings against the Dodgers in his first start of the season but has allowed four earned runs over six innings in each of the past two. … Richard, who split last season between the Cubs and Padres, faced the Diamondbacks three times and had solid results, posting a 3.24 ERA in 16 2/3 innings. … Richard has a three-pitch mix, with a fastball around 90 mph, a slider and a change-up.
Friday: At Chase Field, 6:40 p.m., Diamondbacks RHP Taijuan Walker (2-1, 3.94) vs. Dodgers LHP Alex Wood (1-0, 1.00).
Saturday: At Chase Field, 5:10 p.m., Diamondbacks LHP Robbie Ray (1-0, 1.96) vs. Dodgers RHP Kenta Maeda (1-1, 7.07).
Sunday: At Chase Field, 1:10 p.m., Diamondbacks RHP Shelby Miller (2-1,3.50) vs. Dodgers RHP Brandon McCarthy (2-0, 2.12).