Arizona Diamondbacks clinch playoff berth, will host NL Wild Card game

For the first time in six years, the Arizona Diamondbacks are back in the MLB playoffs. Arizona clinched a Wild Card berth on Sunday, and will host the National League Wild Card game.

As the Diamondbacks (90-66) were playing the Miami Marlins, they clinched a playoff spot on Sunday, thanks to losses by both the Milwaukee Brewers (82-74) and St. Louis Cardinals (81-74).

That gave Arizona 90 wins, assuring at least a tie for the top Wild Card spot with the Rockies. Since Arizona beat Colorado in 11 of its 19 matchups in 2017, the Diamondbacks will host the Wild Card game.

The National League Wild Card game will be played at Chase Field in Phoenix on Wednesday, Oct. 4, and will be televised by TBS.

It has been a remarkable bounce-back season for the Diamondbacks, who lost 93 games in 2016 and cleaned house in the front office and dugout, bringing in general manager Mike Hazen and manager Torey Lovullo.

The pitching staff has been a great strength for Arizona in 2017, led at the top of the rotation by Zack Greinke (17-6, 3.18 ERA, 211 strikeouts) and Robbie Ray (14-5, 2.95 ERA, 212 strikeouts). The Diamondbacks had a 5.09 ERA in 2016, dead last in the National League, but this year their 3.68 mark ranks second in the circuit.

First baseman Paul Goldschmidt is one of the leading candidates for MVP, hitting .307/.413/.583 with 36 home runs, and he has been joined by midseason trade acquisition J.D. Martinez to form arguably the best 1-2 punch in the National League. Since he was traded by the Tigers to Arizona in July, Martinez has hit .292/.363/.742 with a whopping 27 home runs in 56 games, and has 43 long balls on the season.