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Everything you need to know about tonight's D-Backs wild card ga - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

Everything you need to know about tonight's D-Backs wild card game

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ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS (93-69) vs. COLORADO ROCKIES (87-75)

Wednesday, October 4, 2017  Chase Field Phoenix, Ariz.  5:08 p.m. AZT

TBS ESPN Radio  Arizona Sports Station 98.7 FM  KHOV 105.1 FM

National League Wild Card Game  Home Record: 52-29  Road Record: 41-40

RHP Zack Greinke (17-7, 3.20) vs. RHP Jon Gray (10-4, 3.67)

WILD CARE GAME FESTIVITIES: D-backs pregame festivities will include the ceremonial first pitch by NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Kurt Warner, the national anthem performed by Jesse McGuire and a 90’ x 180’ American flag in the shape of the United States, held by uniformed Military members, Phoenix Police and Fire personnel…fans are encouraged to arrive early for a street festival starting at 3:00 p.m. along 4th Street and Jackson.

HERE’S THE STORY…

The D-backs have made the postseason 6 times in 20 years (30.0 pct.), the second-best pct. in baseball history, trailing only the Yankees (46.9; 53-for-113) [source: Elias Sports Bureau].

Arizona has won all 5 "win-or-go home" playoff games @ Chase Field: 2001 NLDS Game 5 vs. St. Louis, 2011 World Series Games 6-7 vs. New York and 2011 NLDS Games 3-4 vs. Milwaukee.

Zack Greinke, who is making his 10th postseason start, was 13-1 with a 2.87 ERA in 18 starts @ Chase Field this season.

AT THE HELM

Torey Lovullo guided the D-backs to a second-place finish in the NL West in his first season as manager.

His 93 wins were the most by an Arizona manager in his first 162 games, 1 more than Bob Brenly’s 92 in 2001.

IMPROVEMENT IN THE WIN COLUMN

The D-backs’ 93 wins were 24 more than their total of 69 in 2016…the 24-win difference from last season was the second largest in the Majors, behind the Twins (26), and fourth-best increase in a single-season in franchise history.

The largest improvement in club history was 35 games from 1998-99, followed by 29 from 2010-11 and 26 from 2004-05.

EXPERIENCE WANTED!

Nine of Arizona's 25-man postseason roster have playoff experience, totaling 127 games:

q D-BACKS POSTSEASON EXPERIENCE (GM): Daniel Descalso (44), Gregór Blanco (37), Fernando Rodney (12), Jeff Mathis (10), Zack Greinke (9), Paul Goldschmidt (5), David Hernandez (4), Chris Iannetta (3) and J.D. Martinez (3).

Three D-backs have participated in a previous Wild Card contest: Gregór Blanco (2014 - San Francisco vs. Pittsburgh), Daniel Descalso (2012 - St. Louis vs. Atlanta) and Fernando Rodney (2013 - Tampa Bay vs. Cleveland).

Torey Lovullo served as bench coach for the Red Sox during 19 postseason games in 2013 and '16.

THE REGULAR SEASON DOES MATTER IN THE WILD CARD GAME

Tonight marks the fourth time 2 teams from the same division will meet in the Wild Card Game with the team that won the regular-season series winning each of the previous 3 tilts:

q  2013 - NL: Pirates were 11-8 vs. Reds; won 6-2

q  2015 - NL: Cubs were 11-8 vs. Pirates; won 4-0

q  2016 - AL: Blue Jays were 10-9 vs. Orioles; won 5-2 (11 innings)

ALL STREAKS MUST END…RIGHT?!

Clubs that have hosted the NL Wild Card Game have not scored since 2013, being shut out in the last 3 games, and have not scored in their last 28 innings.

BATTLE FOR SRF SUPREMACY

The D-backs and Rockies, who both hold their Spring Training at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, will meet for the 22nd time this year, including a pair of Cactus League contests (D-backs were 11-8 during the regular season and 0-2 in the spring).

SO WE MEET AGAIN - IN THE POSTSEASON

Arizona and Colorado are meeting for the second time in the playoffs…the Rockies swept the D-backs in the 2007 NLCS (4-0).

CONQUERING THE ROCKIES

Paul Goldschmidt led all players with 15 RBI vs. Colorado this season, while J.D. Martinez ranked second with a .478 average:

   PLAYER, TEAM              RBI        PLAYER, TEAM            AVG

     Paul Goldschmidt, ARI. 15            Tommy Pham, STL........ .500

     Brandon Crawford, SF...... 14            J.D. Martinez, ARI..... .478

     Joe Panik, SF.......................... 13            Joe Panik, SF..................... .436

     Brandon Drury, ARI..... 11            Eugenio Suarez, CIN..... .400

     3 other players tied at .... 11            Dansby Swanson, ATL. .400

J.D. Martinez has at least 1 hit and 1 RBI in all 6 games vs. Colorado this season, and is batting .457 (21-for-46) with 5 doubles, 4 homers, 12 RBI and a 1.326 OPS in his last 12.

A DIFFERENT DIFFERENTIAL

The D-backs led the Majors with a +291 run differential increase from 2016…Arizona was a -138 in 2016 and a +153 this season.

Top run differentials in MLB from 2016-17:

            CLUB            2016          2017            DIFF

                        D-backs....... -138......... +153......... +291

                        Yankees......... -22......... +198......... +220

                        Twins.................. -167.................. +27.............. +194

                        Astros.................. +23............... +196.............. +173

                        Indians............. +101............... +254.............. +153

HOME SWEET HOME

The D-backs went 52-29 (.642) at Chase Field, the second-best home winning pct. in MLB, behind the Dodgers (.704; 57-24).

q BEST HOME WIN PCT. IN MLB: .704 - Dodgers (57-24); .642 - D-backs (52-29); .630 - Yankees (51-30); .605 - Indians (49-32).

Arizona’s 52 home wins tied for the second most in club history (also: 1999)…the club record was 55 wins in 2002.

PROTECTING THIS HOUSE

The D-backs’ 52 home wins were 19 more than 2016 (33), while overall their Chase Field numbers improved across the board.

A look at the D-backs' home numbers from 2016-17:

YEAR      W-L   ERA   AVG  R/G    2B    HR   BB  SB  OBP  SLG OPS

2017   52-29   3.79   .274    5.6   187   122  300    61  .350 .492 .842

2016     33-48    5.54    .237     5.1    149    113   228    65   .328  .467 .794

The D-backs’ offense set club records at home with 457 runs scored, a .842 OPS, 122 home runs and 187 doubles.

WHO DOESN’T LIKE TATERS?

Arizona’s 220 home runs were a single-season, franchise record, surpassing the 216 in 1999.

The D-backs also hit a club-record 122 home runs at Chase Field and 107 after the All-Star break.

10x10

Arizona tied a NL record (fourth time) by featuring 10 players with 10+ home runs (Daniel Descalso, Brandon Drury, Paul Goldschmidt, Chris Herrmann, Chris Iannetta, Jake Lamb, J.D. Martinez, Chris Owings, David Peralta and A.J. Pollock).

The 1999 and 2000 Reds also accomplished the feat, along with the 2017 Mets.

J.D. = JUST DINGERS

J.D. Martinez, who was acquired from the Tigers on July 18, hit .302 (70-for-232) with 29 home runs and 65 RBI in 62 games with the D-backs…stats with D-backs and Tigers this season:

TEAM    AVG     G    AB     R     H   HR   RBI   BB   OBP   SLG   OPS

ARI         .302    62    232     47     70     29      65    24   .366  .741 1.107

DET         .305     57     200     38      61      16       39     29    .388   .630 1.018

  Martinez was named NL Player of the Month for Sept./Oct., and earned Player of the Week honors 4 times (2 with DET/2 with ARI), the first player since the award began in 1973 (1975 for AL) to claim 4 weekly awards in a single season.

  Additional Martinez notes:

q 29 home runs since July 19 (first game with D-backs) ranked second in the Majors to Giancarlo Stanton (30).

q 16 home runs in September tied for the most in NL history for the month with Ralph Kiner/PIT (1949), 1 shy of the Major League-record of 17 homers by Albert Belle/CLE (1995) and Babe Ruth/NYY (1927).

ON THE MEDAL STAND

Arizona finished in the Top 2 in the NL in both ERA (3.66) and strikeouts (1,482) for the third time in club history (also: 1999 [3.77 ERA/1,198 K] and 2001 [3.87 ERA/1,297 K]).

NEW D-BACKS ERA RECORD

The D-backs’ 3.66 ERA was a franchise best, 0.11 better than the previous mark of 3.77 in 1999, and 1.43 lower than 2016 (5.09).

Arizona’s 1.43 difference in ERA from 2016 to 2017 was the best in baseball, ahead of Cleveland (0.54) and Minnesota (0.49).

A comparison of the D-backs’ pitchers in the last 2 seasons:

YEAR    ERA   QS        IP      H      R    ER   HR   BB    SO AVG WHIP

2017   3.66    82 1441.0 1309   659  586  171  516 1482 .240   1.26

2016     5.09     62  1451.1 1563    890   821   202   603 1318 .275   1.49

1…2…3 STRIKES YOU’RE OUT

Arizona established a club record with 1,482 strikeouts, 164 more than its previous record (1,318 in 2016).

THANK YOU FANS

Arizona’s 2017 attendance total was 98,159 more than its total in 2016, the fifth-best increase in the Majors:

            CLUB                2016              2017           DIFF

                  Braves........... 2,020,914........... 2,505,252...... 484,338

                  Indians.......... 1,516,524........... 2,048,138...... 456,471

                  Rockies......... 2,500,859........... 2,953,650...... 351,126

                  Brewers........ 2,315,244........... 2,558,722...... 243,478

                  D-backs... 2,036,216...... 2,134,375...... 98,159

d-backs wild card roster

PITCHERS: Archie Bradley (R), Andrew Chafin (L), Patrick Corbin (L), Jorge De La Rosa (L), Zack Godley (R), Zack Greinke (R), David Hernandez (R), Robbie Ray (L), Fernando Rodney (R), Jimmie Sherfy (R).

CATCHERS: Chris Herrmann, Chris Iannetta, Jeff Mathis.

INFIELDERS: Daniel Descalso, Brandon Drury, Paul Goldschmidt, Jake Lamb, Ketel Marte, Kristopher Negrón, Adam Rosales.

OUTFIELDERS: Grégor Blanco, Rey Fuentes, J.D. Martinez, David Peralta, A.J. Pollock.

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