Since the last roundup, the D-backs have gone 4-3, with a split against the Dodgers and a series win against the Rockies. Arizona dropped in the ESPN Power Rankings, but only one spot. Pretty good week, right?
Wrong. Winning 2 games against the Dodgers was just good enough to push their NL West title to Thursday, when LA fought back from a 6-3 deficit to win 7-6. As written here on Friday, despite a request from the Arizona organization that the Dodgers not come back out to the field after moving their celebration to the visitors’ clubhouse, the team ran out, scaled the wall, and threw themselves a pool party (as the D-backs lifeguards looked on).
Opinions differed throughout the sport on Friday — some criticizing the Dodgers, some criticizing those who criticized the Dodgers. Personally, I do think it was a little disrespectful, and I doubt very much that the thought was spontaneous for all of the Dodgers involved. I don’t really think the pool party was thrown specifically to offend, but I do think it happened specifically in spite of how Arizona players and fans might feel. It’s a good thing for Arizona to be noticed by the nation overall, though, and the Australia games get a little extra oomph from the whole fiasco. Maybe the D-backs will play next season with a chip on their shoulders.
From around the internets:
- Nick Piecoro’s recap of the pool ordeal includes some quotes from Kirk Gibson and Kevin Towers.
- Dan Bickley thought the Dodgers showed that they’re idiots.
- ESPN’s Buster Olney suggested that the pool celebration was just a celebration.
- At SweetSpot, David Schoenfield suggested we all lighten up. I agree that on-field flair and shenanigans are part of what makes major league baseball entertaining; but maybe griping about it also makes it entertaining?
- Jim McLennan kicked off a discussion of the pool fiasco at AZ Snake Pit.
- Thomas Lynch of Venom Strikes also detailed how “petty” D-backs were upset about the pool party. At the same site, Christian Moffett insists that what the Dodgers did was “respecting the D’backs in the most disrespectful and nit-picky way,” as they technically celebrated in the pool, not on the field. If we’re getting technical, they did use the field to get to the pool…
- At SB Nation, Grant Brisbee weighed whether the Dodgers broke any unwritten rules.
There were even a few things written in the last week that weren’t about the pool fiasco, if you’re into that sort of thing:
- Nick Piecoro wrote about Trevor Cahill, his command struggles, and his tendency toward giving up the big inning. Interesting read, and I’d hazard that if Cahill did take that step forward next year, the team would only need one or two other things to break in its favor to go from middle of the road to playoff contender.
- Piecoro also broke down the Tyler Skaggs situation from the team’s perspective. An important read for D-backs fans.
- Sequencing Matters: Which D-backs Pitches are Fooling Hitters?
- Which D-backs Pitches Work Well Together?
- Taijuan Walker’s Hot Spring Has a New Look
- Zack Greinke’s Velocity is Trending in a Predictable Direction, Sadly
- Statcast and a New Era for Evaluation
- 2017 Spring Preview: A Wide Open Bullpen
- How the Diamondbacks Landed in Baseball’s Toughest Situation and Don’t Have a Clear Way Out
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FanGraphs Stats Glossary
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Previously on The Pool Shot, the guys explained some of their favorite advanced stats. Hitting, including wRC+, HHAV and batted ball; pitching (38:00), including FIP, xFIP and SIERA; and baserunning and defense, including UBR, UZR and DRS (58:00).