Gallen backed by red-hot rookie Fletcher in win vs. Giants

May 14th, 2023

PHOENIX -- On Saturday night, handled the pitching, (once again) led the offense and the two of them along with Ketel Marte, Christian Walker, Josh Rojas and Jose Herrera took care of things defensively.

Add it all up and it resulted in a 7-2 win over the Giants at Chase Field, the D-backs' second straight win against them with the series finale set for Sunday.

Let’s break it down:

Gallen was really good despite what he said

If you listened to Gallen sum up his outing, you would think he gave up a bunch of runs.

“I felt like it was a grind,” Gallen said. “I didn’t have the greatest feel for my curveball. Just tried to make pitches. They scored a quick run, so just trying to keep us in the game, really.”

The Giants did get a run in the first against Gallen when Thairo Estrada led off the game reaching on a wild pitch after striking out and eventually came around to score.

But that was all the Giants mustered against Gallen until the eighth inning, when they finally chased him after Wilmer Flores drove home a run with double to left. In all, Gallen scattered five hits and walked two while striking out six in 7 2/3 innings.

Not many pitchers would describe that kind of performance as a grind, but Gallen is a perfectionist, never satisfied with any result.

“It was just a really impressive outing,” D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. “He was pounding the zone, reading swings -- cut fastball, breaking ball, changeup, he had a lot of things working for him.”

Fletcher is as hot as you can get

One day after he drove in four runs and hit his first Major League home run, Fletcher was at it again. His three-run triple in the sixth broke the game open and he gave the D-backs added insurance runs with a two-run homer in the eighth.

“I think it's just a testament of just what they've kind of preached here the last couple of years -- that we have these guys that are in Double-A, Triple-A that can really play,” Gallen said. “It's been a lot of fun to watch, really; they’re helping us win ballgames. It's been awesome.”

In 12 games since being promoted from Triple-A Reno, Fletcher is hitting .462, which is the best in franchise history for a player in his first 12 games, topping Mark Reynolds’ .442 mark in 2007. Fletcher’s 18 hits trail Reynolds by one and he’s tied for the most RBIs (13) with Reynolds and Alex Cabrera, who made his debut in 2000.

“I think it's just like a comfort with my teammates and the coaching staff and the training staff,” Fletcher said. “Everybody here has done such a good job welcoming me.”

Dom did it defensively as well

Fletcher set the tone defensively in the first inning when he raced back to catch J.D. Davis’ deep drive to right. The Giants managed a run on the play with Estrada tagging up from third, but the catch, which had a 40 percent catch probability per Statcast, resulted in a pair of outs with LaMonte Wade Jr. being doubled off first.

It was just one of a host of nice defensive plays, including a couple of diving stops by Marte, a strike-'em-out-throw-'em-out by Herrera, a diving play at first by Walker and a couple of line drives that almost knocked Rojas over at third base.

“A lot of it is a credit to the defense, really,” Gallen said. “I’m standing here talking about me grinding it out, just trying to make pitches for eight innings or whatever, but it was the defense, really. They made a lot of really good plays that kept the game really close and bailed me out of some spots for sure.”