Some well-timed dominance from their pitchers has given the Arizona Diamondbacks a much-needed cushion in the NL West race.
Arizona (76-59) has been extremely stingy since losing a season-high six in a row, allowing a total of six runs over its seven consecutive victories. The pitching staff has allowed two runs or fewer in each game of the streak, tying Milwaukee for the longest such run of pitching excellence this season.
Now, the Diamondbacks have a chance to win eight in a row for the first time since April 4-12, 2008, and to match the club-record of 11 straight home wins, which they accomplished June 7-July 9, 2003.
Five of the eight victories in the 2008 streak came at the expense of the Rockies, who also ended that run with a 13-5 win at Chase Field.
The current pitching-fueled streak has allowed the Diamondbacks to turn what was a one-game lead over San Francisco into a five-game advantage.
Miley (1-1, 4.50 ERA) will try to produce another strong outing for his team after earning his first major league victory, 8-1 over Washington on Thursday. Following a rough debut, the 24-year-old left-hander yielded five hits and four walks over six scoreless innings.
Probable Colorado starter Aaron Cook(notes) (3-7, 5.47) didn’t make too many good pitches against Houston on Wednesday, giving up six runs and 11 hits over five innings, but escaped without a decision as the Rockies went on to win 7-6.
Cook was a little better against Arizona on July 22, allowing four runs over six innings of an 8-4 victory - his first in his last seven matchups in this series.
The right-handed sinkerballer is 6-4 with a 5.26 ERA in 21 career starts against the Diamondbacks, giving up three runs or more in each of the last 18.
Montero, batting .379 during an eight-game hitting streak, is 4 for 11 in his career versus Cook.
Arizona has won 12 of 16 against Colorado entering Tuesday’s matchup.