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Diamondbacks start game with back-to-back-to-back homers

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For the second time in less than three years, the Diamondbacks began a game with three consecutive home runs. Monday’s Phillies-Diamondbacks game in Philadelphia was delayed about a half hour due to rain, but the D-Backs were still ready.

Jarrod Dyson opened the game, swinging at a first-pitch fastball from Jerad Eickhoff, yanking it over the fence in right field. Ketel Marte then lived a 2-2 curve out to right field for another home run to make it 2-0. David Peralta worked a full count, then drilled a slider over the center field fence for dinger No. 3.

A team has begun a game with three consecutive home runs just six times since 1914, according to MLB.com’s Sarah Langs. Incredibly, the D-Backs have done it twice — most recently in 2017. They victimized Nationals starter Max Scherzer for a trio of round-trippers on July 21, 2017 in Arizona.

The ball is apparently flying in Philly on Monday night, though. In the bottom half of the first Jean Segura hit a fly ball that just barely escaped the fence in left field for a solo home run. According to Statcast, it had an exit velocity of just 91.4 MPH, a launch angle of a whopping 40 degrees, and an expected batting average of .010. All that means is that Segura’s fly ball is a routine out an overwhelming majority of the time. The pitch he it out, by the way, was 92.6 MPH, which made me wonder: how often has the exit velocity of a homer been less than the velocity of the pitch?

Phillies COVID testing reports no new positives

Phillies COVID testing
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Phillies COVID testing results revealed no new positives for the fourth straight day, the team announced this morning. As a result, they will resume their schedule tonight against the Yankees.

It’ll be the first game for the Phillies since last Sunday’s game against the Marlins. The Miami outbreak prompted the Phillies’ season to be shut down, but the lack of positive tests beyond team staff that had more direct contact with the visiting Marlins is an encouraging sign. The Phillies COVID testing strongly suggests that cross-team infection from on-the-field activity is not a significant problem. This could bode well for, say, the Brewers, who have been idled a few days due to the outbreak emerging on their would-be opponents this past weekend, the St. Louis Cardinals.

All of this, of course, puts the Phillies well behind their usual schedule. They’ve played just three games and have had minimal baseball activity in the past eight days. Whether that shows up in the performances of Jake Arrieta and Aaron Nola, tonight and tomorrow night’s starters, respectively, will be worth watching.

All in all, though, the Phillies COVID testing results are good news. And folks, we could use some good news right now.

UPDATE: The Marlins are negative too: