David Peralta is one of several youngsters making key contributions to the D’backs. Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Here we are, the day after the non-waiver trading deadline and the Arizona Diamondbacks have done some re-tooling. It started with the trades of Brandon McCarthy, Joe Thatcher and Tony Campana and ended with the deals of Gerardo Parra and Martin Prado. Not a complete overhaul, but enough key players are no longer in Sedona Red. So where does that leave the team now and how well are they set up for 2015?
Today, the team has an awful lot of young players dotted all over the 25-man roster. Three rookies (Nick Ahmed, David Peralta and Ender Inciarte) were in last night’s starting lineup. Vidal Nuno, in his second year although not too young at 27, is tonight’s starting pitcher. Rookie Chase Anderson has been one of the team’s best starting pitchers while fellow first year man Evan Marshall is an important guy in the bullpen. Chris Owings and A.J. Pollock will hopefully come off the disabled list soon. There will be September callups and among them could be Archie Bradley and Jake Lamb. In other words, there are a lot of young players getting their Major League feet wet which can only serve the team well in 2015 and beyond. I just mentioned ten names. If five or six of them become solid everyday players/pitchers, that would be an accomplishment.
Then there is the payroll factor. By shedding Parra, Prado and Thatcher, the team saved about $19 million dollars in salary for 2015. McCarthy made $10.25 million dollars this year and probably wouldn’t have been re-signed meaning that is roughly a $30 million dollar difference between this year’s record payroll and next. Arbitration-eligible players such as Mark Trumbo and Addison Reed will eat into that difference but the team still will come out on the plus side. That should leave management with some extra dollars to make an upgrade or two.
Don’t forget that August 31st is an important date as well. That is the waiver deadline where teams expose players to waivers and if claimed, have 48 hours to make a trade or pull the player back. It is possible another player or two will be gone when the calendar turns to September. With Tony LaRussa in the organization and a slew of young players the rest of the way and of course Paul Goldschmidt, I look forward to the rest of the 2014 season.