Diamondbacks Keep Playoff Push Alive

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Diamondbacks vs. Padres, 9:40 ET

This should absolutely be a pitching duel between the two NL West teams tonight. One guy is flying a bit under the radar – with the exception of the loyal Outkick readers. The other was a potential Cy Young candidate for the first portion of the year. Both are pitching well, and both are trying to end the season strong.

On the Diamondbacks side, we have Merrill Kelly throwing. There are only so many times you can write about how good a guy is. People are either going to accept it or it will never come through and sink in. Kelly has actually been a little bit better on the road than he has in home starts. It isn’t as though Kelly is unhittable, he does allow a couple of runs in a game typically. However, in two starts against San Diego, he has been awesome. He has allowed just one earned run in 10 innings on the season. One issue has been hits; he’s allowed 10 hits to the Padres. One was a solo home run, which obviously is the one run he allowed on the year to them, but still, nine other hits allowed isn’t great. He’s just been good at working himself out of trouble.

Joe Musgrove was a guy that I was watching very frequently most of the first half of the season and have since adjusted my stance on him. He was keeping opponents to a low total and their team total under in a lot of games. Even after a bit of a stumble, Musgrove has responded and rebounded from a few rough starts. On the season, he has 20 quality starts in his 24 starts. You just don’t really know when that one tough start is going to come into play. At home Musgrove has been slightly better, and against the Diamondbacks, he only has one start, a six-inning outing with two earned runs.

Both of these teams have playoff potential, even if the Diamondbacks potential is very small and unlikely. Still, the game means something to both of them. I wouldn’t be shocked about an under here – seven runs isn’t a ton, but could be with these two on the hill. (If I play that, I’ll tweet it, but it would just be a sprinkle anyway.) I like Arizona as live dogs in this game, but I prefer to take the first five innings because we can get a push potentially as well. I’m taking them through five innings at +135.

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Written by David Troy

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