Arizona Diamondbacks: Creating a hold on the NL West

Zack Godley allowed six runs, five earned, and absorbed his first loss of the season Sunday. (Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images)
Zack Godley allowed six runs, five earned, and absorbed his first loss of the season Sunday. (Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images) /

Their 11-4 beginning to the season ties for the best start to any season in Arizona Diamondbacks history.

In Dodger Stadium on Sunday, the streak was broken, but a message delivered. Despite having their 11-game winning streak snapped against the Dodgers, the Arizona Diamondbacks laid a foundation likely to inspire and guide through the maze of a protracted baseball season.

After Clayton Kershaw picked up his first win of the season and Arizona starter Zack Godley stumbled, the Diamondbacks completed their first road trip of the season by winning six of the nine games on the journey. That leaves the club with an 11-4 mark out of the gate, and ties for the best start in franchise history.

That was set in 2000 and equaled in 2008. Plus, their effort here in the early stage of the season remains among the best in the game. Only the Boston Red Sox, New York Mets and Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have fewer losses. Coming into their next game Tuesday night in Chase Field to open a six-game homestand, the Diamondbacks have an opportunity to beat up on the 6-9 Giants and 7-10 Padres.

All of which puts the Arizona Diamondbacks in a solid spot to open the season. Coming into their next game, they hold a three-game lead on the Colorado Rockies in the NL West division.

The 6-3 record of the initial road trip of the season did not escape manager Torey Lovullo, who reflected on the success after dropping the road finale, 7-2 in Dodger Stadium.

"“To come on a trip like this and go to St. Louis to their opening weekend, and then you’ve got to travel into San Francisco and here and we go 6-3, I think we would all have been satisfied if you had told us before the start of the season that we would do that,” Lovullo told “But still it hurts. This was a game we wanted to win."

If the Los Angeles Dodgers were able to salvage the final game of the series and break that 11-game losing streak to the Arizona Diamondbacks — accomplished by Zack Godley who faltered. Yielding an uncharacteristic six walks, Zack Godley lasted only four innings and tossed 93 pitches, 41 alone in the third inning. After surrendering six runs, five earned, his ERA ballooned to 3.00. Godley started Sunday’s game with a blistering 0.64 ERA.

Afterward, Zack Godley told that control was an issue.

"“I was struggling with my command out there,” Godley said. “It just wasn’t going for strikes. Some days you’ve got it, some days you don’t. Today, unfortunately, I did not. I tried to do my best to eat as many innings as I could for the team, but ultimately, I just didn’t have my best stuff today and they took advantage of it.”"

Of the two runs scored in Sunday in Dodger Stadium, one was on Paul Goldschmidt’s fourth homer of the season, and that came against Kershaw in the seventh inning. Over the final six games of the trip, Paul Goldschmidt raised his batting from .100 to a current .241 and went 10-for-24 with four bombs in that span.

Roster move

More from Call to the Pen

Following an early departure after two innings Saturday against the Dodgers, right-hander Taijuan Walker complained of soreness in his right arm. Scheduled for an MRI on Monday, the Arizona Diamondbacks took no chances and placed Walker on the 10-day disabled list with right forearm inflammation.

to replace Walker on the 25-man roster, the Arizona Diamondbacks recalled reliever Silvino Bracho from Triple-A Reno. In the 7-2 loss to the Dodgers Sunday, Bracho pitched three innings and that represented the longest stretch in his career. Previously, he threw two innings on five previous occasions.

On the homestand 

The Arizona Diamondbacks resume their schedule on Tuesday night in Chase Field and face the Giants in the opener of a three-game set. Lefty Patrick Corbin gets the start for Arizona.

Coming into this start, Corbin is 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA. In his last outing on April 10 at San Francisco, Corbin did not factor in the decision. In 18 previous starts against the Giants, the native of Clay, N. Y. is 5-7 and a 3.42 ERA. Veteran Johnny Cuero, coming off the disabled list with a sprained left ankle, receives the assignment for the Giants. Coming into this start, Cueto is 11-3 lifetime against Arizona in 15 starts.

Next: Lovullo apologizes to Molina & we're not buying it

The series continues with night games Wednesday and Thursday against the San Francisco Giants, and then the San Diego Padres move into the desert for a three-game, weekend set.