PHOENIX -- The Arizona bullpen has been so good for so long this season that the occasional hiccups can surprise.Premier setup man Archie Bradley gave up six runs on three hits and three walks in the seventh inning while unable to hold a three-run lead in an 11-10 loss to
PHOENIX -- The Arizona bullpen has been so good for so long this season that the occasional hiccups can surprise.
Premier setup man Archie Bradley gave up six runs on three hits and three walks in the seventh inning while unable to hold a three-run lead in an 11-10 loss to the Rockies at Chase Field on Friday.
For Bradley, especially, unexpected is an understatement.
Bradley entered with an ERA under 2.00 and had allowed only 10 earned runs all season, never more than two in one game, until the Rockies strung together a series of good at-bats that culminated with pinch-hitter Raimel Tapia's two-out grand slam for an 11-8 lead.
Bradley set a Major League record with 26 holds before the All-Star break and even after consecutive two-out walks to Gerardo Parra and Tony Wolters forced in a run and brought Tapia to the plate in the seventh, manager Torey Lovullo said he never considered a pitching change.
"I didn't think twice about removing him from the game," Lovullo said. "He was going to stay out there. He's been our guy and will continue to be our guy. He's been lights-out. He's been our guy in those situations. If he gets off the mound giving up two runs and we were up by one run, he had still done his job.
"He is human, but he's an easy bet to get the worm to turn. It looked like he was having trouble locating his fastball, and I just kept feeling that every pitch was going to be that much closer to getting back to the form that we saw prior to the All-Star break."
A.J. Pollock had a career-high five hits, Ketel Marte had a career-high four RBIs and David Peralta had four hits as the D-backs scored more runs Friday than they had in the final five games combined before the All-Star break. They also showed heart, adding runs in the eighth and ninth and putting the tying run on third before Jonathan Jay took a called third strike to end it.
Bradley nearly wiggled out of the seventh inning, striking out Trevor Story and Ian Desmond on 97 mph fastballs around an RBI single to Carlos Gonzalez. But he walked Parra on a 3-1 pitch to load the bases and lost Wolters on a 3-2 fastball that strayed inside. The loss of command was especially unexpected. Bradley had walked only 11 batters in 45 2/3 innings this season, never more than two in a game. He had walked one in his last 13 games.
"Pretty crappy," Bradley said. "Just didn't have my stuff. Just didn't have command. I felt like I found it. Made some good pitches to Story. Some good pitches to Desmond. One pitch away from really only giving up one run and just couldn't make that final pitch I needed to tonight.
"Pretty frustrating, but the good news is, I did blow the first game after the Al-Star break last year and we made the playoffs. If that's a sign, we are going to be OK."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
D-backs baserunners twice aggressively advanced from first to third on singles.
Jake Lamb took third on Marte's single to right-center with two outs in the first inning and scored on a passed ball. The next batter grounded out. Steven Souza Jr. took third on Lamb's single in the third inning, and he was able to score when Desmond bobbled a routine grounder and had only one play, at first. The next batter grounded out again that inning.
Pollock was an equal opportunity attacker in his first career five-hit game. He turned around two 97 mph four-seam fastballs from German Marquez in his first two at-bats, then pulled an 81 mph curveball over the bag at third for an infield single. He doubled on a 94 mph two-seamer from Scott Oberg and smoothly placed an 81 mph slider from Adam Ottavino into left field for his final single in the eighth inning.
HE SAID IT
"That's why this game is so great. It's a game of inches. Charlie Blackmon picks that ball off the ground. If that ball gets by him, I feel strongly that we could have tied the game and had a runner at second base. It was a great jump. A great read and a great catch. And that's what great players do." -- Lovullo, on Blackmon's sliding catch in the ninth inning that turned into a sacrifice fly instead of a potential game-tying hit with runners on second and third in an 11-9 game
Zack Godley (11-6, 4.61 ERA) will take his 4-0 career record against the Rockies into the D-backs' 5:10 p.m. MT game on Saturday. Godley, who has won six of his last seven decisions, has given up more than two earned runs only once in his last eight starts. The Rockies will send Kyle Freeland (8-6, 3.11) to the hill.
Jack Magruder is a contributor to MLB.com based in Phoenix.