Where do you even start with this game?
The Arizona Diamondbacks prevailed in the National League Wild Card Game on Wednesday night, holding off the Colorado Rockies 11-8 at Chase Field in Phoenix in a game that very much lived up to the name.
Arizona built a 6-0 lead early thanks to runs in each of the first three innings, including a three-run home run by perennial MVP candidate Paul Goldschmidt in the first. But despite the huge advantage, Zack Greinke couldn’t get out of the fourth inning.
The Rockies rallied for four runs to pull within two, then in the fifth inning Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo seized the urgency of a winner-take-all game, bringing in starter Robbie Ray for his first relief appearance in three years.
Ray got the D-backs into the seventh inning, though Colorado pulled to within a run. Archie Bradley, Arizona’s best reliever all season, finished off the seventh, then did something quite unusual.
Bradley, just 6-for-61 in his career at the plate, tripled home two runs to give the Diamondbacks some insurance runs. He is the first relief pitcher in history to hit a triple in a postseason game.
But since this is the Wild Card Game, after all, Bradley promptly gave those two runs right back when Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story homered to pull Colorado back within a run at 8-7. Bradley allowed four home runs during the regular season.
Perhaps the Rockies were on to something:
Arizona added another two-run triple in the eighth inning by A.J. Pollock, though he isn’t a pitcher so it wasn’t nearly as cool. That was one of four triples on the night for the Diamondbacks, the most triples hit in a game since the 1903 World Series!
We even got the Fernando Rodney experience to close out the game for Arizona, though it wasn’t nearly as eventful as it could have been.
The Diamondbacks move on to face the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League Division Series. If the next round is anything like the first two nights of the postseason, 2017 will be quite an October to remember.