RF Corbin Carroll:
If you don't know him already, Corbin Carroll has turned himself into a household name and a rookie-of-the-year frontrunner for Arizona this season. He has slashed .285/.362/.868 on the season with 25 home runs and 54 stolen bases and is coming into the series with a .308 batting average over his past 30 games. Since Carroll came into the league, Burnes has had his number, holding him to one single in nine at-bats with three strikeouts.
Carroll struggles big-time against cutters, hitting .159 on the season against them, and his expected batting average against these pitches is only .216. His next worst pitch to hit is a curveball, which is Burnes' second-most used pitch, with a .224 xBA on the season against it. Expect Burnes to attack Carroll heavily with his cutter, and Burnes should the upper hand in this matchup.
2B Ketel Marte:
Ketel Marte has been the household name from Diamondbacks teams in the recent past, and for good reason. Over seven seasons with the Diamondbacks dating back to 2017, Marte is averaging a .830 OPS, has 104 home runs, and made the NL All-Star Team in 2019. This season has been no different, as he has slashed .276/.358/.844 with 25 home runs. 82 RBI, and 9 triples. Ketel Marte has been okay against Burnes in his career, with three hits in 11 at-bats, but all three of his hits are singles. He has struck out only once against Burnes and has walked one time.
This season, Marte is struggling to hit cutters consistently but has slugged a bit against it, posting a .226 batting average but slugging .403. Marte struggles against changeups and sliders, which Burnes both uses, whiffing 30.4% and 29.4% against these pitches, respectively. If Burnes is able to get ahead in the count and command his cutter against Marte, he should have success in this matchup.
LF Tommy Pham:
As the Diamondbacks were in a position to contend at the deadline this year, they went and traded for the bat of Tommy Pham to give them a big right-handed bat in their lineup. Pham was hitting to the tune of a .820 OPS in his early-season success with the Mets but hasn't been nearly as good with Arizona. He has seen this OPS drop over 100 points after moving west, as his .719 mark with the Diamondbacks shows a bit of struggle.
Pham has a small sample size against Burnes, only seeing him for five plate appearances in his career, and grabbing a single and a walk in these times up. Pham also struggles with cutters, but his expected stats show a bit of a different story. While he is only hitting .207 with a .414 SLG against these pitches, his xBA sits at .249 and xSLG at .439. Where Burnes can get to him is by using his changeup, as Pham has had a history of problems with this pitch. This season, Pham is hitting .143 with a 40.9% whiff rate and a 33.3 strikeout rate on changeups. Pham also struggles at hitting cutters, striking out 34.1% of the time he has seen this pitch.
1B Christian Walker:
Christain Walker has been the big bat in Arizona's lineup the past couple of years, hitting 69 home runs over his last two seasons, and an OPS over .820 in this two-year span. While he hits home runs at a very high rate, he also strikes out often, with 131 K's in 2022 and 127 this year. Walker is struggling coming into this series, hitting only .208 with five home runs in his past 30 games.
Walker's three hits against Burnes are two singles and a double, and he has struck out and walked once each. One tough note about Christian Walker is that he hits cutters very well. He has a .286 batting average and a .667 SLG against cutters this season, which makes for a tough matchup against Burnes.
Burnes' best bet against Walker is to stick to a slider and curveball-heavy arsenal, as the xBA's both sit under .235 for these pitches. Walker also strikes out at 33.3% against cutters but doesn't have any other glaring weaknesses in how he attacks individual pitches.