D-backs manager Gibson: Dodgers clinching at Chase Field 'not something I want to see'
On the same date two years later, the Diamondbacks -- who once led the NL West by 9.5 games -- will host the team on the verge of clinching the division, the Los Angeles Dodgers, who carry a 10.5 game division lead into the four-game series.
As would be expected, manager Kirk Gibson is wholly uninterested in seeing the Dodgers celebrating a division title at Chase Field.
"It's not something that I want to see," he said before Monday's series-opener. "I don't think anybody would want to see that."
Without a series win against the Dodgers, Gibson's club will have to see that.
Though they've gone 8-7 against the Dodgers so far this season, the Diamondbacks have won just one of their last six games against the division foe, who will send its best pitchers to the mound in the four-game series.
Hyun-Jin Ryu (13-6, 3.07 ERA) will take the ball Monday for the Dodgers, while Zack Greinke (14-3, 2.74 ERA), Clayton Kershaw (14-9, 1.94 ERA) and Ricky Nolasco (8-2, 2.63 ERA) are listed as the probables for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
The Diamondbacks will look to Trevor Cahill (6-10, 4.22 ERA) to prolong the seeming inevitability of a Dodgers' division title Monday, while Patrick Corbin (14-6, 2.92 ERA), Brandon McCarthy (4-9, 4.58 ERA) and Wade Miley (10-10, 3.70 ERA) are expected to attempt to do the same in games two, three and four of the series.
Gibson's consistently intense, winning attitude hasn't waned.
"I think that we try to win every night we go out there," he said, reiterating something of a platitude -- not just among baseball folk generally, but specifically to his demeanor.
"Regardless who you're playing, you feel a lot better when you win."
The former Dodgers star did, however, recognize the possibility of having to face such a sight at home and the probability of seeing it over the next week or so.
"If they earn it, they earn it, though," he said.
"You have to tip your cap to them. They've had an exceptional second half."
That last part is an understatement. Exceptional doesn't quite do the Dodgers' second half justice. Historic is more appropriate.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Dodgers recorded the best 48-game stretch since 1942 earlier this season, going 41-7 from June 22 to August 16. Prior to the start of the run, the Dodgers stood 9.5 games behind the Diamondbacks in the NL West at 30-42. They entered Monday 13 games above .500.
"Exceptional" was just about the only compliment Gibson was willing to give his opponents, keeping his praises well-measured, infusing disbelief and forewarning in his comments about Los Angeles.
"Their journey, should they clinch, has just begun," Gibson said. "(There are) a lot tougher things to come for those guys.
"It'll be very challenging for them."
- Dose of Venom: Anderson dominates, Diamondbacks finish home stand with win over Rockies
- Anderson, Hill, big 7th inning lift Diamondbacks over Rockies: By The Numbers
- Dose of Venom: Matzek, Rockies silence Diamondbacks
- Nuno's strong outing squandered as Rockies shut out Diamondbacks: By The Numbers
- Dose of Venom: Jake Lamb's late grand slam propels Diamondbacks past Rockies
- Augie Ojeda, former Arizona Diamondback - Friday August 29Doug and Wolf chat with former Diamondback Augie Ojeda.
- Travis Lee, former D-backs first baseman - Thursday August 28Travis Lee shares some stories and memories from playing with the D-backs.
- Derrick Hall, D-backs President and CEO - Thursday August 28Derrick Hall discusses the home plate rule in the new instant replay system.
- Tim Kurkjian, ESPN MLB insider - Wednesday August 27ESPN baseball analyst Tim Kurkjian believes Matt Williams is good for the Nationals.
- Kirk Gibson, D-backs manager - Tuesday August 26D-backs manager Kirk Gibson discusses possible changes to a six-man rotation.
- Reggie Sanders - former Diamondbacks outfielder - Tuesday August 26Reggie Sanders discusses the Diamondbacks' alumni game coming up this Saturday.
- Derrick Hall, D-backs President & CEO - Thursday August 21Derrick Hall gives his thoughts on the new MLB commissioner.