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What we learned as Snell struggles again in Giants’ loss to D-backs

In Sports
April 20, 2024

What we learned as Snell struggles again in Giants’ loss to D-backs originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO — On paper, the matchup on Friday night was one of the more interesting ones of the season.

Blake Snell and Jordan Montgomery were two of the Boras Four, standout veterans who had to wait until deep into the spring to sign under-market deals. Snell was making his third start for his new team on Friday, while Montgomery was making his debut for the Arizona Diamondbacks about three weeks after shockingly agreeing to just a one-year deal.

It was a fun one on paper. Between the lines, it was a complete mismatch.

Snell gave up five runs and the Giants kept spinning from there, losing 17-1. A night after a game that Bob Melvin called their best of the year, they played their worst.

Snell was knocked out in the fifth and replaced by right-hander Landen Roupp, who was charged with four runs of his own. The Diamondbacks kept pushing, with Blaze Alexander (no relation) capping a six-run eighth with a grand slam into the arcade section.

The Giants have been outscored 25-2 in Snell’s two starts at Oracle Park. They still have not won three consecutive games this season. If you’re still in the mood, here are three more things to know …

Not Celebrating The Milestone

With his first out on Friday, Snell reached 1,000 innings in the big leagues, although he certainly wasn’t in any mood to celebrate by the end of his night. The first few innings were more positive than his first two starts, but he again walked away with an ugly line.

After throwing 150 pitches to get through seven innings in his first two starts, Snell was much more efficient on Friday, especially the first time through the order. He was at 35 pitches through three innings and had just one three-ball count, but the Diamondbacks made him work in the fourth.

They scored just one run in the frame but made Snell throw 25 pitches. He wouldn’t make it out of the fifth. Through three starts, Snell has allowed 15 earned runs on 18 hits. The nine hits he gave up were his most since June 16, 2021, a start that came at Coors Field.

Light Tower Power

The Giants had to wait until the fourth inning of their eighth home game of the year, but they finally got to use their new lights. (At least on purpose … they accidentally set them off on Nick Ahmed‘s double on Thursday night.)

Jorge Soler hit a no-doubter, blasting a sinker 410 feet right down the left field line. As Soler rounded the bases, the lights flickered. The Giants are using the new effect for home runs and Camilo Doval entrances, but Soler’s homer was their first this season at Oracle Park, and they have not handed a lead to Doval in their first five home games.

The homer was Soler’s fourth of the season, tying him with Matt Chapman and Michael Conforto for the team lead.

Time For Regrets

There are a lot of executives around the league who should wake up with some regrets on Saturday morning.

Montgomery was waiting for a long-term deal all offseason, but despite a recent history of reliably eating innings and a World Series run in 2023, he had to wait until the final hours of the spring to find a new home.

Montgomery went a more traditional route to get built up, throwing twice in Triple-A before Friday’s game. He was outstanding in his debut, allowing just four hits and walking none in six innings.

The Diamondbacks rode the Zac Gallen-Merrill Kelly duo to the World Series last year and their rotation is even better this season. Montgomery will eventually be joined by fellow lefty Eduardo Rodriguez, who currently is sidelined by shoulder soreness.

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