Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Rally Caps Offseason Outlook - Arizona Diamondbacks

Pos Player Salary

C Miguel Montero $10,000,000
2008 $66,202,712
1B Paul Goldschmidt $500,000
2009 $73,516,667
2B Aaron Hill $5,500,000
2010 $75,484,833
3B Chris Johnson $2,200,000
2011 $56,489,833
SS Cliff Pennington $2,100,000
2012 $75,417,833
LF Jason Kubel $7,500,000
Average $69,422,375.60
CF Adam Eaton $500,000
2013 $76,116,333
RF Justin Upton $9,958,000
Budget -$6,693,957

C Wil Nieves $800,000

IF Ryan Wheeler $500,000

OF Willie Bloomquist $1,900,000

OF Gerardo Parra $2,100,000

Util John McDonald $1,500,000

SP Ian Kennedy $4,200,000

SP Trevor Cahill $5,700,000

SP Wade Miley $500,000

SP Trevor Bauer $1,183,333

SP Tyler Skaggs $500,000

CP J.J. Putz $6,500,000

SU David Hernandez $1,375,000

SU Heath Bell $10,000,000

MRP Brad Ziegler $2,400,000

MRP Matt Albers $1,700,000

MRP Bryan Shaw $500,000

LRP Josh Collmenter $500,000

The Diamondbacks are one of the few teams that don't have a lot of work to do this offseason. They already  made their big move when they pulled off the three team trade that sent Chris Young to Oakland and Cliff Pennington and Heath Bell to Arizona. In Pennington, the DBacks received a defensive shortstop with a fair amount of contact hitting ability. He joins an infield of Miguel Montero, Paul Goldschmidt, Aaron Hill, and Chris Johnson that all have good power for their positions. With Jason Kubel, Adam Eaton, and Justin Upton, the DBacks bring back a team that struggle with strikeouts, but have the ability to put up a big inning.

Arizona has a bit of depth on the bench as Wil Nieves is a serviceable backup catcher who hit pretty well last year in a season split between Colorado and Arizona. Obviously playing in two hitters' parks helped his numbers, but returning to the confines of Chase Field continues that relationship. The team also has Ryan Wheeler, Willie Bloomquist, Gerardo Parra, and John McDonald. This represents a good mix of slap hitters off the bench and defensive subsitutions. If they can afford to improve anywhere, though, their depth on the bench would be a great place to start. They have a lot of defensive ability, but could really use a more reliable pinch-hitting option.

The pitching rotation for Arizona is solid. Ian Kennedy is primed to bounce back from a subpar 2012 and is followed in the rotation by Trevor Cahill. Cahill quietly had a solid season and is still only 24 years old. The team also looks to feature a crop of talented young pitchers in Wade Miley, Trevor Bauer, and Tyler Skaggs. Skaggs and Bauer struggled a bit in short stints with the major league team, but strong minor league numbers point to a bright future for the two arms. Miley looks to follow up on a rookie campaign that almost earned him the rookie of the year award.

With the aforementioned three team trade, the Diamondbacks bullpen is anchored by David Hernandez, J.J. Putz, and Heath Bell. They also have a former closer in Brad Ziegler. Matt Albers and Bryan Shaw round out the short relief game, while Josh Collmenter is available as a swingman. The DBacks had a top ten bullpen last season. The addition of Bell can help the team improve on an already strong unit.

With a payroll of $76 million on the books so far, the DBacks are about one million over last year's payroll and $6.5 million over their five year average. Realistically, they can't afford to sign free agents on anything more than low risk deal or minor league contracts. They have the option of trading Collmenter, Skaggs, or Bauer to try to bring back an inferior arm and an offensive option for their bench, but that cuts into their starting pitching depth while providing only a minimal improvement.

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