Welington Castillo and Diamondbacks rally past Mets, 2-1

PHOENIX – Friday night was a night to forget for catcher Welington Castillo. He struck out four times in his debut with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Fortunately, Arizona won 7-2, so he didn’t hurt the team that much with all the K’s.

On Saturday night, Castillo made amends for his rough start by hitting a two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh inning off New York Mets starter Bartolo Colon. It proved to be the game-winner, as the Diamondbacks squeezed by the Mets, 2-1, in front of 30,265 at Chase Field.

It was Castillo’s first home run with Arizona, and his first since April 21 against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Castillo was a member of the Chicago Cubs at the time.

“Bartolo Colon is a guy that throws a lot of sinkers, so he’s a ground ball guy, because he keeps the ball down. I (saw) on that one that he lifted that a little bit up and to me that was the pitch to hit, and I hit it out,” Castillo said.

When he got a hold of Colon’s pitch, Castillo initially thought it wasn’t enough to go out, but in fact it was more than enough to sail over the wall out in left field.

“It was really good to hit it out and get the win,” Castillo said.

Pitcher Chase Anderson was tuned up pretty good in his last two starts against the St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers. He gave up a total of 20 hits and eight runs in those two starts, both of which were non-decisions.

Anderson would have yet another start without a decision – his ninth of the season – against New York. In 5.2 innings, Anderson gave up eight hits, one earned run, one walk and six strikeouts.

Of course Anderson would love to pitch in games and win, instead of seeing zeroes in the win column all the time.

“If we win as a team, that’s all that matters,” Anderson said. “We want to come out and win the series tomorrow, (and) put the team in good position to win games; that’s my job.”

“I control what I control. Those guys are doing their best to get runs and get hits. It’s just one of those years,” Anderson said.

Anderson was impressed with how Castillo worked behind the plate. It helped him a lot knowing the man behind the mask had his back the entire time he was firing baseballs at him.

“We talked about it yesterday about how we wanted to attack hitters,” Anderson said. “Today before the game, he (Castillo) had a good feel for what the pitch is, and that’s the changeup. He didn’t shy away from calling it anytime I needed him to, so we were pretty much on the same page the whole night, and that’s obviously nice for a guy that’s just coming in here learning a bunch of new pitchers, and comes up with a big hit. It was a good day for him.”

Brad Ziegler took over for Addison Reed in the ninth inning, and shut the door on New York, earning his sixth save of the season.

“As long as we’re getting wins, I don’t care if I’m finishing or not,” Ziegler said. “It felt good to get a couple wins here against a really good team.”

There were a lot of other sub-stories that came out of this game: 1.) The ejection of Arizona manager Chip Hale, and 2.) Jake Lamb’s return to the lineup.

Arizona first baseman Paul Goldschmidt struck out looking to end the sixth inning, but he didn’t particularly care for the third strike call from home plate umpire Mark Rippenger, so he said his peace to Rippenger and went back to the dugout. Hale proceeded to shoot out of the dugout, up to Rippenger, and he continued the discussion. One thing led to another, and Hale was ejected for excessive arguing. It was Hale’s first ejection since becoming Arizona’s manager.

“When Goldy (Goldschmidt) argues, I know it’s not the right call, because he really knows the strike zone. I know how hard it is to umpire,” Hale said. “I don’t like to get thrown out, and I don’t like to argue balls and strikes because I know how hard it is to do.”

“He (Goldschmidt) was not gonna get thrown out,” Hale said. “If I see that something like that’s gonna happen with any of the guys, not just Goldy, I’m always gonna try to save our guys from getting thrown out.”

Lamb came off the 15-day disabled list on Saturday, and it seemed like he never left the hot corner. With two on and one out in the top of the ninth, pinch hitter John Mayberry Jr. hit a sharp grounder to Lamb, which he cleanly fielded. Lamb then stepped on third base to get Eric Campbell out, then he fired a missile to Goldschmidt, which got there just before Mayberry Jr. hit the base.

A thrilling finish to say the least for Lamb and the Diamondbacks.

The Diamondbacks turned four double plays on the night, but there was none bigger than that one.

“Usually it just comes natural, but like first play back to end the game, (I) panicked a little bit, (but) it was fine.” Lamb said. “It was a little different coming off the bench, and being out there in front of so many people. It was a bunch of fun, we got the win, so that’s all that matters.”

Arizona can take three of four from New York with a win on Sunday afternoon. Game time is 1:10 p.m., with Josh Collmenter scheduled to get the start. In eight games (three starts) vs. New York, Collmenter is 2-2 with a 4.50 ERA (14 ER in 28.0 IP). In his three starts vs. the Mets, Collmenter is 2-1 with 5.63 ERA (10 ER in 16.0 IP).

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