Home Cooking Suits the DiamondbacksPosted by Jeff Summers on Jul 19, 2010 in 2010 Regular Season | 1 comment
The 2010 Arizona Diamondbacks have been a confusing team to understand. There will be days where they look as though they had never seen a baseball before stumbling and bumbling throughout the game. The next night they come out and play like a team that was four games away from the World Series in 2007.
I guess that is what is most frustrating. If they played poorly every night you could at least point to the fact that the roster did not have the players necessary to win at this level but just as soon as you suggest that, they play a game like they did tonight against the New York Mets.
Going into this game the Diamondbacks had lost four consecutive games and had not won since the All-Star break. In the three games in San Diego they were not in one of those games. Granted at times they led and the score suggested they were competitive but realistically the Padres out played them in nearly every category.
Then against a strong New York Mets teams the Diamondbacks hitters patiently waited for a good pitch to hit and in the process scored four runs in the first inning and requiring Mets starter Mike Pelfrey through an astounding 51 pitches.
The hitting did not stop there. Throughout the night the Diamondbacks got to Mets pitchers putting together timely hits that moved runners around the base paths in route to a 13-2 beating of a team that has historically had success against them.
With the win the Diamondbacks record is still an anemic 35-58. Looking closer you find that Arizona is a respectable 22-25 at home. This of course means they are 13-33 on the road. Let me give you a moment to re-read that last statement.
The Diamondbacks have won a measly 13 games away from Chase Field this year. In all of baseball there are only two teams with a worse road record – the Baltimore Orioles and the Pittsburgh Pirates.
It should be noted that the Orioles and the Pirates are also the only two teams with worse overall records than the Diamondbacks and in both cases it is mere percentage points lower than Arizona.
Struggling on the road is not a new situation for the Diamondbacks. Over their 13-year history the team has only had four seasons where they had a winning record away from Chase Field – 1999 (48-33), 2001 (44-37), 2002 (43-38), and 2005 (41-40).
What is a surprise is how one-sided the road record is this year. Their 0.283 winning percentage on the road is second worst in franchise history after the disastrous 2004 season where the team lost 111 games with 59 of those loses coming away from then Bank One Ballpark.
Ask any of the coaches or players for an explanation of why this team plays so poorly on the road and they are at a loss to explain it. So while a lot of effort is being placed on fixing the bullpen or cutting down on strikeouts there may be another issue that needs attention.
This team seems to lose its focus when on the road and as a result drops a lot of games that they should be winning. As much fun as it is to see the Diamondbacks win at home, to be successful they need to develop a road warrior attitude. At this point I am not even sure Mad Max could bring them out of this apocalypse.