Diamondbacks need to beat the bad
Arizona splits with the Cubs in Phoenix while L.A. sweeps them at Wrigley. The Mets leave Chase Field with a series victory and go to L.A. to get swept by the Dodgers.
Comparing Arizona is the Dodgers is futile, I realize. They are in the midst of one of the most historic runs of regular season dominance. Remember the Dodgers-D-backs brawl? After that series, L.A. left for Pittsburgh. They lost the series. The Dodgers haven't lost a series since.
If the D-backs won series against Chicago and New York but split with the Rays and lost this recent series with Baltimore, I get it. The Rays and Orioles are excellent teams. There's no shame in losing to those clubs. I haven't figured out, however, how grinders lose to the weak and beat the strong.
Yes, you're wondering why am I writing this after three exciting, unbelievable walk-offs against Baltimore. The answer is, that's exactly why I'm writing this.
If you're truly a grinder, the weak will struggle against you. They should succumb to your grind-it-out at-bats and the unrelenting style. It's the Orioles and Rays who should beat you with their talent. Sure, your "grinder mentality" will steal a game in the series but the margin of error is too slim to win on a consistent basis against teams more talented than you.
I'm complimenting the players and staring them down, but I am not standing on the fence. The last three days show how good Arizona is. The results against the weak teams this year show that "grinder" is an over-used sales term. A grinder would not lower their focus with a rookie on the mound pitching for a below .500 team, but that's what has happened way too often this year.
Anytime a divisional opponent tears up baseball for as long as the Dodgers have, you're probably not going to win your division. It's unfair to expect any team to match the Dodgers. It is fair to expect this team to quit losing to the Padres. When the season is over, we'll look at the Dodgers record against below .500 teams and compare it to the D-backs.
I suspect we'll find out who the true grinders are.
Doug Franz, Co-host of Doug & Wolf
- Tim Kurkjian, ESPN MLB insider - Wednesday April 23ESPN MLB insider Tim Kurkjian discusses what the D-backs need to do to turn things around.
- Kevin Towers, D-backs GM - Wednesday April 23What can be done to save the season?
- Kirk Gibson, D-backs manager - Tuesday April 22D-backs manager Kirk Gibson talks about the team's struggles.
- Bickley Blast - Monday April 21Dan goes off on the struggling D-backs.
- Tim Kurkjian, ESPN MLB Insider - Thursday April 17Tim Kurkjian talks about the Diamondbacks' tough start to the season.
- Bickley Blast - Thursday April 17Bickley blasts Kevin Towers' philosophy and the need for an analytics GM.
- Derrick Hall, D-backs President and CEO - Thursday April 17Is it too early to make a change?