The number one hasn’t been kind to the Arizona Diamondbacks lately.
Having dropped six of their last seven, all by one run, quite frankly they were sick of the number one.
Saturday, the number one was finally kind to the Snakes.
In his first career start, D-Backs righty Josh Collmenter was brilliant, tossing six shutout innings and his offense gave him just enough support, scoring one run on just one hit.
That was enough to defeat the Dodgers 1-0, ending Arizona’s five game losing streak, giving the D-Backs their first win in a week.
Normally winning on one hit would be the storyline, but Saturday belonged to Collmenter.
Using his deceptive over-the-top delivery, the rookie kept the Dodgers at bay all afternoon long, allowing just two hits in his six shutout innings of work.
Collmenter was pulled on a pinch count after throwing 74 pitches.
The way he was pitching, he could have kept going, but the D-Backs were protecting their rookie right-hander.
The performance Collmenter turned in was just what Arizona and the struggling D-Backs rotation needed, badly.
After allowing a double to Dodgers’ pitcher Chad Billingsley in the 3rd, Collmenter retired the final nine batters he faced in order.
The D-Backs got their only run and hit in the second inning.
Stephen Drew collected that lone hit leading off the inning with a double to right. Billingsley then threw away a pickoff attempt, allowing Drew to scamper to third.
After a walk to Miguel Montero, Melvin Mora put Arizona up 1-0 with a sacrifice fly to right.
After that, the D-Backs had just one base runner the rest of the way and that was just a harmless walk to Drew in the 7th.
Luckily, Arizona got that one run against Billingsley, because if it didn’t, who knows how long this one would have lasted.
Collmenter gave way to Aaron Heilman for the 7th and the veteran worked a perfect frame.
That was the last easy inning for the D-Backs, as the Dodgers threatened in the 8th and 9th innings.
Though it wasn’t easy, the D-Backs bullpen got the job done, leaving the Dodgers frustrated.
In fact, it looked a lot like what has happened to Arizona on this road trip.
Connecting for his first extra base hit since April 6, James Loney led off the 8th with a double to right off D-Backs reliever David Hernandez.
Rod Barajas sacrificed pinch runner Tony Gwynn Jr. up to third, but Los Angeles couldn’t get the run in.
Hernandez struck out pinch hitter Dioner Navarro and got pinch hitter Jay Gibbons to fly out to escape the inning unscathed.
In the 9th, Jamey Carroll led off with a single off D-Backs closer J.J. Putz, but Aaron Miles couldn’t sacrifice him to second, instead striking out.
After a long at bat, Putz then walked Andre Ethier to put the tying run in scoring position and the winning run at first, with the dangerous Matt Kemp coming to the plate.
Putz got Kemp to ground into a 6-4-3 double play, ending the game and snapping the losing streak.
Putz picked up his 8th save of the season.
It was a gigantic win for Arizona, probably too big to put into words. Now the D-Backs have a good chance to end the road trip with a series win because they send their ace to the mound in the rubber match.
Ian Kennedy (3-1, 3.23 ERA) will try to secure that series win when he takes on Dodgers LHP Ted Lilly at 1:10PM Sunday afternoon.