Diamondbacks stave off elimination with 8-1 victory

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The Diamondbacks jumped all over Brewers starter Shaun Marcum and won 8-1 Tuesday to extend the NLDS to a Game 4.

Pitching with Arizona down 2-0 in the series, Josh Collmenter shut down the Brewers for the third time this year. He pitched 14 scoreless innings against Milwaukee during the regular season, and he allowed just one run and two hits in seven innings tonight.

Arizona’s offense, which was limited to five runs in the first two games, got on the board right away, scoring two runs on hits from Miguel Montero and Paul Goldschmidt in the first. Montero added another RBI in the third, and Goldschmidt delivered the big blast of the night, knocking Marcum out of the game with a grand slam in the fifth.

It was Goldschmidt’s second homer in two games after he sat in favor of Lyle Overbay in the opener.

Game 4 of the NLDS will be played Wednesday in Arizona, with lefties Randy Wolf and Joe Saunders scheduled to start. Wolf lost both of his starts against the Diamondbacks this season, amassing a 6.08 ERA in the process. Saunders allowed two runs over seven innings in a no-decision in his lone start versus the Brewers.

Notes

– Rickie Weeks shielded Willie Bloomquist from second base on a first-inning steal attempt, but didn’t get the call from umpire Jeff Kellogg. It proved crucial, as the Diamondbacks went on to score two runs with two outs in the frame.

– Goldschmidt’s slam was the third by a rookie in postseason history. The previous two were hit by Yankees: Gil McDougald in the 1951 World Series and Ricky Ledee in the 1999 ALCS.

– Regardless of how many more games the Diamondbacks play this year, it should be a lock now that Goldschmidt won’t be on the bench in any of them. He’s hit 10 homers in 164 at-bats between the regular season and the playoffs, and he’s driven in six of Arizona’s 13 runs in the series.

Report: Orioles expected to replace Buck Showalter

Buck Showalter
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Orioles manager Buck Showalter is not expected to retain his position with the club beyond the 2018 season, according to multiple reports from Jon Heyman of Fancred and Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports. Nothing appears to be finalized just yet, however, and the Orioles have yet to address rumors of Showalter’s impending departure or news of a possible contract extension for general manager Dan Duquette.

Even so, it’s been a year of near-unprecedented disaster for the 62-year-old skipper, who helped lead the team to a 44-108 record prior to the outcome of Friday’s series opener against the Yankees. With the Orioles’ 108th loss — a 4-6 heartbreaker against the Blue Jays on Tuesday — they tied the 1937 St. Louis Browns for the second-most losses in a single season, eclipsed only by the 43-111 record of the 1939 Browns. As they have just 10 games remaining in the regular season, this year’s team has no chance of climbing out of last place in the AL East and may well finish with the worst record in the AL to boot.

While the Orioles’ missteps don’t bode well for Showalter’s future in Baltimore, he’s brought far more good than harm to the organization over the last eight and a half years. He assumed the managerial position from interim manager Juan Samuel in the middle of the team’s 2010 season and guided the club to five winning seasons and three postseason appearances in 2012, 2014, and 2016. Entering the 2018 season, his record sits at 666 wins and 677 losses, the winningest mark by any of the team’s skippers since Earl Weaver wrapped his 17-season run with the team in 1986. Whether the Orioles believe Showalter is capable of recovering from two consecutive losing seasons and returning the team to their former days of glory (and the occasional division title) remains to be seen, of course, though there’s plenty to recommend him as they prepare to advance a full-scale rebuild over the offseason.