The Diamondbacks’ youngsters continue to shine. As a pinch-hitter, Carlos Quentin belted a two-run double to center, Stephen Drew played another fine game at shortstop while Tony Pena — the other recent call-up — pitched two perfect innings in relief.
“I think I can go three,” said Pena, who had been a starter for most of his career.
Had Sunday’s 9-7 loss to the Rockies not got away in the ninth, Pena would have picked up his first big league win.
In addition, Drew hit safely in his seventh straight game. And Quentin has six RBIs in his first nine big league at bats.
Add in pitcher Enrique Gonzalez, last called up on June 6, and the D-Backs’ youngsters have had more impact than most anybody could have imagined.
In fact, Gonzalez may be the biggest surprise because coming into the season, “We never really looked at him in a starting role,” manager Bob Melvin said.
“With Drew and Quentin, you expected them to do well, though maybe not with this impact right away.”
More and more, Melvin thinks teams may look to make their big in-season moves from within rather than seeking veteran help in trades.
Luis Gonzalez hit a shot to right-center in the eighth.
He’d already doubled once, moving into 30th place all time.
But as he saw the ball roll to the fence, he never hesitated about heading for third base instead of holding up for more two-base milestones (he would have tied Frank Robinson at No. 29).
He made it. Afterward, he said, “If I would have pulled up, I would have deserved to have been booed.
“I’m sure I’ll hit another double by the end of the season,” he joked. “It never crossed my mind.”
TOP OF THE ORDER
Though he’s been hitting eighth in the order (seventh on Sunday), Drew figures to be hitting near the top of the order as his career progresses, Melvin said.
“ ‘Two’ is a good spot for Drew,” Melvin said.
And with his power, “He could hit ‘five.’ I don’t know if there’s a spot in the lineup you wouldn’t be able to use him.”
REST FOR THE WEARY
The D-Backs will use today’s off day to rest their entire rotation for an extra day.
This should be especially beneficial for Brandon Webb, who has pitched 154 innings so far.
“As many innings as he’s mounting, it’s nice to give him an extra day,” Melvin said.
Conor Jackson batted second for the first time, with Melvin saying he wanted to get the scuffling first baseman “a little change of scenery.” Orlando Hudson, meanwhile, hit sixth for the first time. With Chris Snyder starting at catcher, Drew hit seventh and Snyder was No. 8. . . .
Triple-A Tucson pounded Salt Lake 28-5 Sunday in Utah. The Sidewinders hit six homers. Brian Barden drove in six runs, and Robby Hammock and Chris Young drove in five each.