2021 Arizona Diamondbacks
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2021 Arizona Diamondbacks / Franchise: Arizona Diamondbacks / BR Team Page
Managed by Torey Lovullo
History, Comments, Contributions
The 2021 Arizona Diamondbacks were expected to be an uninteresting middling team when the season started, so it was a bit of a surprise when they started losing games by the bushel-load. On June 15th, they lost their 21st consecutive road game, one shy of the all-time record. It was a particularly excruciating loss, as they led the San Francisco Giants, 8-5, coming into the bottom of the 8th, when the roof caved in. Joe Mantiply allowed the first two batters to reach, but managed to get Mauricio Dubon to fly out and LaMonte Wade to hit into a force play. He was then replaced by Humberto Castellanos, who walked pinch-hitter Curt Casali to load the bases, and then gave up a grand slam to Mike Yastrzemski to put the Giants ahead, 9-6, after which the D-Backs went down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the inning. They tied the record the next day with a 13-7 loss to the Giants, matching the 1943 Philadelphia Athletics and the 1963 New York Mets. On June 17th, they took sole possession of the record with their 23rd straight road loss, again against the Giants, by a score of 10-3. However, they were hearing footsteps, as on the same day, the Baltimore Orioles lost the 19th straight game on the road.
The losing streak came at a particularly painful time, as in early June, General Manager Mike Hazen had to take a leave of absence when it was announced that his wife was suffering from an aggressive form of brain cancer. On June 10th, they fired both of their hitting coaches, Darnell Coles and Eric Hinske, replacing them with Rick Short and Drew Hedman. The D-Backs had lost 30 of their last 35 games at that point. With their road losing streak temporarily on hold because they were back at home, they extended their overall losing streak to 17 games before finally recording a win on June 21st when they defeated the Milwaukee Brewers, 5-1, behind the pitching of Merrill Kelly. Their last win had come on June 1st and the win was only their third in their last 34 games. It seemed unthinkable that the D-Backs had actually had a .500 record as late as May 5th, but had managed to fall 32 games below the break-even mark in less than two months. On June 25th, the Orioles ended their streak after 20 straight losses, but the D-Backs forged ahead, losing to the San Diego Padres, 11-5, to increase their record to 24. They finally ended the streak the next day, June 26th, with a 10-1 win over the Padres. But the win did not end their sufferings, as on July 10th, they were demolished by the Los Angeles Dodgers, 22-1, in one of the worst defeats in team history that featured 21 hits, 8 home runs and 2 grand slams.
Awards and Honors
- All-Star: Eduardo Escobar
- Associated Press: "Diamondbacks fire hitting coaches after losing 30 of 35 games", NBC Sports.com, June 11, 2021. 
- Steve Gilbert: "For 1st time since April, D-backs win on road: Arizona ends MLB-record 24-game away losing streak in San Diego", mlb.com, June 27, 2021.