Best: Minor variations aside, the Diamondbacks have only really had two uniforms. The current one and the old one. The current one is not what I’d consider the Platonic ideal of baseball style, but as you’ll see in a second, I believe it to be the superior look.
Worst: Incorporating teal, purple, black, pinstripes and vests, the original Diamondbacks’ outfits were the perfect storm of marketing douchebaggery. I said something about the Pirates and A’s yesterday, but what the Dbacks wore between 1998 and 2006 are almost certainly the worst thing every worn by a Major League team. Horrifyingly bad with no redeeming factors whatsoever, save maybe the fact that, once every five days, you got to see Randy Johnson in his prime pitching in them. Otherwise I almost want to vomit they’re so terrible.
Assessment: The Diamondbacks should hire all of the hard-copy photo doctoring experts who managed to survive the Stalin regime and get them to subtly alter all pictures of the 2001 championship season so that no historical evidence exists of that awful, awful look. Once that’s done, maybe they can improve upon what they’re currently wearing. I like the little rattlesnake D and the color scheme, but perhaps they can unblock and unbunch the letters a bit.
The magic number to clinch a wild card spot is still 1, but the Mets have at least secured a wild card tie after defeating the Phillies 5-1 on Friday night.
Jay Bruce powered the offensive drive, going 3-for-4 with a pair of RBI singles and his 33rd home run of the season, ripped from an Alec Asher fastball in the seventh inning. On the mound, right-hander Robert Gsellman limited the Phillies to seven hits and one run over six frames, striking out seven batters in his eighth appearance of the year. Behind him, a cadre of Mets relievers turned out three scoreless innings to preserve the lead and anchor the Mets in the wild card standings.
The Cardinals aren’t out of the race quite yet, and can still force a tiebreaker with the Mets if they manage to win the remainder of their games this weekend and the Mets lose the rest of theirs. Any other scenario will ensure the Mets’ exclusive rights to a wild card spot next week. While a wild card clinch is unlikely to happen tonight, with St. Louis leading Pittsburgh 7-0 through 7.5 innings and just entering a rain delay, it remains a distinct possibility over these next two days.
In a season that boasts the likes of Max Scherzer (he of the 20-strikeout masterpiece) and Clayton Kershaw (he of nine separate games with at least 10 strikeouts), there hasn’t been anyone who’s done exactly what Carlos Rodon did this week.
During Friday’s series opener against the Twins, Rodon retired seven consecutive batters via strikeout. His streak — and the beginnings of a perfect game, if you can call it that after just 2 ⅓ frames — ended on a Logan Schafer double that found right field well before Rodon managed to put up two strikes. With seven consecutive strikeouts, Rodon became the first American League pitcher to strike out seven batters to start a game since right-hander Joe Cowley did it for the Sox back in 1986. Had Schafer whiffed on a couple more fastballs, Rodon would have tied Mets’ starter Jacob deGrom for most strikeouts to start a game in major league history.
Not only did Rodon manage to quell the first seven batters in Minnesota’s lineup, but he extended his strikeout streak to 10 consecutive batters dating back through his last start against the Cleveland Indians. Per MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger, the last major league pitcher to do so was reliever Eric Gagne, who accomplished the feat for the 2003 Dodgers during his first and only Cy Young Award-winning season.
Any way you slice it, this is an impressive look: