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News » Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2009-05-02


Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2009-05-02


Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2009-05-02
Yes, the Diamondbacks miss perennial Cy Young contender right-hander Brandon Webb, who will not be back until June, and their bullpen has been shaky at times.

But the main culprit for their just-completed 9-13 April was on the other side of the ball. The D-backs ranked 13th in the National League in runs (84) and OPS (.703) the first month of the season. They were last in the majors in batting average (.231), on-base percentage (.308) and hitting with runners in scoring position (.204).

"Offense. Last year we had a terrific April, offensively," manager Bob Melvin said when asked about the difference from April 2008, when the D-backs were 20-8 and held a five-game lead in the NL West.

The D-backs hit .272 in March/April last year, when they led the league in doubles (64) and triples (10) and were second in runs (161) and home runs (33).

The D-backs' offense cooled down after that, however, and they became the first team in the expansion era to not win their division after holding a lead of five games or better entering May.

The four-headed outfield is off to a slow start this year, although Justin Upton (.254) has shown recent signs of breaking out in an eight-game hitting streak he extended Friday. Chris Young was tied for second in the NL with nine doubles but hit only .198 in April. Conor Jackson was tied for the team high with 12 RBIs but hit only .203. Eric Byrnes hit .173.

Second baseman Felipe Lopez, hitting .318 with eight doubles and three homers, was the only regular who hit over .270 in April.

DIAMONDBACKS 5, BREWERS 2: 1B Tony Clark broke a 1-for-20 slump with a pinch-hit, two-run double with two outs in a four-run eighth inning as the D-backs won for the fourth time in six games. OF Justin Upton extended his hitting streak to eight games with a two-out infield single that drove in the tying run before Clark doubled. Upton also walked with the bases loaded to drive in the game's first run in the sixth inning.


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: May 2, 2009

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