For about six weeks, Spring Training proceeded as normal. Position battles took shape, practices were crisp and games were played. Then the Arizona Diamondbacks went to Australia and the routine that we are accustomed to year after year gets blown to bits. For five days, the D’backs were idle as they were allowed to get their bodies adjusted to a new time zone as well as embarked on a goodwill tour for baseball. Then, they played games for three straight days, the latter two actually counting for real. Since then it’s been nothing but silence on the diamond.
That all changes today as the Snakes finally get back on the field with a tilt against the Chicago Cubs at 1:10 PM MST. Brandon McCarthy will make his final Spring start and will oppose a guy who has been linked to Arizona many times over the past year, Jeff Samardzija. Tomorrow will be the final split squad of the year with a contest vs. the Cincinnati Reds at 12:05 and a 1:10 affair against the Cleveland Indians (final game at Salt River Fields). After that, the Cubs will come to Chase Field for games on Friday and Saturday. After a day off Sunday, the regular season resumes with a three game home series with the San Francisco Giants.
These games will be anything but meaningless. There are still a few positions with no resolutions including shortstop, fifth starter and backup catcher. The bottom line is that we finally get to see the Arizona Diamondbacks back on the field.