As the 2012 season continues to wind down, believe it or not, there are some bright spots for the Arizona Diamondbacks. The baseball world got a glimpse of some outstanding young D-Back arms including Rookie of the Year candidate Wade Miley. Jason Kubel was quite the pickup by General Manager Kevin Towers, leading the team in several offensive categories for most of the season. However, the one guy who has sort of flown under the radar but has been having a solid year with hopefully many more to come is First Baseman Paul Goldschmidt.
Arizona’s eighth round pick in the 2009 draft, Goldschmidt found his way to the Majors in 2011 after hitting 83 home runs and knocking in 264 runs in three stops at the Minor League level. His 156 at-bats in 2011 barely qualified him as a rookie or else the Diamondbacks would have had two guys in the running for the ROY. Although his stats this season are not jaw-dropping, his 18 home runs and 69 RBI’s with a .289 bating average are good numbers for a team that has been inconsistent at the plate all season. He has also been an excellent base runner as his 15 stolen bases lead the club in that category. Arizona has been very happy with the progress Goldschmidt has shown this season. At the end of Spring Training, he was not considered to be the rock-solid every day 1B as early on, Lyle Overbay saw a decent amount of playing time. However by mid-May, it was obvious that Goldschmidt would be manning the position for the entire season. It has been a wise move as Goldy, about to turn 25, has been one of the few offensive forces for the Diamondbacks.
With the possible departure of Justin Upton, Goldschmidt may also be looked at as one of the team leaders of 2013. Nick Piecoro of azcentral.com wrote in his blog about the dust-up between John McDonald and Pablo Sandoval in this past Wednesday’s game with the Giants. As the benches emptied, Piecoro noted that Goldschmidt was the first D-Back player to join the fray. If you saw the footage of this, you could see Goldschmidt speeding all the away from the dugout getting himself right in the middle of commotion. Although not eligible for free agency until 2018, perhaps Arizona should think about locking him up through his early free agent years. Paul Goldschmidt quickly appears to be growing into a star in Major League Baseball.
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