Lamb's HR helps D-backs surpass 2018 win total

September 28th, 2019

PHOENIX -- No Paul Goldschmidt? No A.J. Pollock? No Patrick Corbin?

No problem for the D-backs, who saw some of their marquee players leave via trade or free agency during the offseason and still found a way to exceed last year’s win total.

With a come-from-behind, 6-3 win over the Padres on Friday night at Chase Field, the D-backs raised their record to 83-77. Last year they were 82-80.

“We have obviously changed some faces around here,” D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. “But it hasn’t impacted their passion and desire to go out and win and do things right.”

The D-backs were in the thick of the NL Wild Card race until a six-game losing streak earlier this month, which included an embarrassing four-game sweep against the Mets in New York, all but doomed their chances.

Still, they continued to play hard and win games.

This past week, they took two of three from the playoff-bound Cardinals, including one contest in which they tied the game in the bottom of the ninth inning, then again in the 13th before finally winning it in 19 innings.

They got a few hours of sleep and came back for a day game the next afternoon and won again.

“Because that’s the way we set out to play ever since spring,” outfielder said. “You set your goals to make it to the playoffs, but if you don’t, it doesn’t mean you just tank it like that. That’s one thing that we showed -- we ain’t just tanking it. We’re still going to play hard. We’re still going to try to finish on a winning note, even if we don’t get into the playoffs.”

On Friday, the D-backs fell behind, 3-2, thanks to a home run by Manny Machado and some timely hitting by the Padres. In the eighth, though, the Arizona offense was finally able to get going with a four-run rally against reliever Luis Perdomo.

capped the inning with a pinch-hit three-run homer. It was bright spot in what has been a frustrating and disappointing season for Lamb, who missed time due to injury and struggled to find his stroke at the plate afterward.

“He works as hard as anybody to produce good outcomes,” Lovullo said. “He hasn’t had a lot of luck or good outcomes like that, so I know he’s going to sleep well tonight.”

While he likes his team’s effort and fight, Lovullo also made it clear that the organization is not satisfied with how the year turned out.

“I want us to understand [next year] that our goal is to win the National League West,” Lovullo said.

In the meantime, they’ll just keep playing hard.