With 33 wins at Chase Field this year, the Arizona Diamondbacks have already matched their home victory total from last season.
But poor field conditions might have played a role in costing the D-backs win No. 34 on Sunday.
With the D-backs and visiting Reds tied in the top of the sixth inning, right fielder David Peralta slipped while trying to field what should have been the third and final out of the inning. Instead, Peralta slipped (twice) on the field's natural grass, allowing the Reds to take a 2-1 lead and leading to speculation that Peralta's slip was due in part to the condition of the outfield.
The Reds would eventually win by that 2-1 score, dropping the D-backs to a record of 53-36 heading into the All-Star break.
If the score holds, the Chase Field grass could be responsible for the D-backs' loss. pic.twitter.com/jeKnXejZAM
— Shane Dale (@ShaneDaleABC15) July 9, 2017
"This time of year is always a challenge due to the extreme heat and increase in humidity coupled with the need to close the roof each day in time to cool the ballpark. Our grounds crew continues to work hard to maintain the best possible field conditions," a D-backs team spokesperson said in a statement Sunday afternoon.
After the game, neither Peralta nor D-backs manager Torey Lovullo blamed the less-than-ideal field conditions on the sixth-inning mishap, and both men had praise for the Chase Field grounds crew.
"I just slipped a little bit and lost my balance, and then I was trying to get up and couldn't do it, couldn't make the play," Peralta said. "It's not easy to take care of that field. I mean, it's 120 outside. I know the grounds crew, they're doing an unbelievable job to set up the field for us every day the best they can. So, I mean, it is what it is."
D-backs outfielder David Peralta explains what happened on the play in which he slipped on the Chase Field grass and allowed a run to score. pic.twitter.com/pdvHEBA7i9
— ABC15 Sports (@abc15sports) July 10, 2017
Lovullo said it looked like Peralta may have simply "spun his wheels" on the play.
"I do know one thing: This grounds crew works extremely hard day and night to make this field as good as it possibly can," he said. "We're obviously challenged with some conditions from time to time and we all can understand."
RE: the Peralta play, D-backs manager Torey Lovullo praised the Chase Field grounds crew, said they're doing their best in a hot climate. pic.twitter.com/3cn3IOEQYN
— Shane Dale (@ShaneDaleABC15) July 10, 2017
The D-backs and Maricopa County are at odds as to who's responsible for repairing pipes that burst and led to flooding at Chase Field two weeks ago. But in a statement, the D-backs made it clear that field maintenance is the team's responsibility.