It’s Like Déjà vu

The Arizona Diamondbacks winning on Opening Day is always a great way to start out the season. They followed that up with a great performance last night from Dan Haren who made his Diamondbacks debut. And while he struggled a little in the fourth inning there were enough signs that pointed positively that as a Diamondbacks fan you had to feel good about the trade made on December 14, 2007 that brought Haren to the Diamondbacks from Oakland and brought Chris Burke and Chad Qualls from Houston. Were it not for the ninth inning stumble by Brandon Lyon the Diamondbacks would have found themselves 2-0 and atop the National League Western Division. Even with the loss they found themselves just one-half game out of the lead. So as I went to bed last night I was still bummed at losing the game but overall in a pretty good mood.

This morning I awoke remembering that today was a getaway day in Cincinnati which meant morning baseball. There’s nothing quite like first pitch over a bowl of cereal to make a guy thankful he is alive. This game would have special significance. Not because the team needed to redeem themselves for the previous night but because it was the season debut of Doug Davis and I think everyone is curious how he will do just a few short days after learning he had been diagnosed with thyroid cancer. It seemed quite appropriate that the weather in Cincinnati was cloudy with a chance of rain. That pretty much summed up the mood after last night’s game. Davis took the mound and from the off-set didn’t seem to have his best stuff. He gave up two doubles in the first inning allowing Ken Griffey Jr. to score. After a rare error by gold glove second baseman Orlando Hudson Brandon Phillips scored giving the Reds a 2-0 lead. The second and third innings did not go much better for Davis as he allowed another run in the second when he gave up a home run to Jeff Keppinger. When Bob Melvin removed Davis from the game during the bottom of the fourth inning he had given up 4 hits resulting in 3 runs (2 of them earned) while walking 6. I’m sure that was not the kind of outing Doug Davis had envisioned when he started the season. For most teams and on most days you would say a three run deficit is not insurmountable. But the Diamondbacks are not most teams and this was not most days. Today the Diamondbacks showed why they were the worst hitting team in 2007. They were able to accumulate one single hit, a home run by right fielder Justin Upton. Their only other run of the day came after relief pitcher David Weathers walked the bases loaded before allowing a sacrifice fly by pinch hitter Alex Romero. So on a rain-soaked field the Diamondbacks saw their record drop to 1-2 for the season and 0-2 in one-run games. It is only three games into the season but it is already beginning to feel like déjà vu. The offense seems frighteningly familiar to what we saw last season. The young hitters are inconsistent and the team has struggled these three games trying to find a rhythm that they can sustain. Hopefully it was first series jitters or the cold weather that caused this. The problem is that the road from here gets a lot tougher. The team leaves for Colorado for the home opener for the Rockies at Coors Field. After three tough games at the humidor-ium it is back to Chase Field for the Diamondbacks home opener against the newly retooled Los Angeles Dodgers who find themselves sitting atop the NL West standings followed by three more games against their chief rival the Colorado Rockies this time at Chase Field. This series with the Cincinnati Reds is one that the Diamondbacks should have won. I know that the season is 162 games long but it’s my theory that games in April and May are a lot easier to win than games in August and September. Let’s hope the bats come alive this weekend.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *