Will the Diamondbacks Trade an Outfielder This Off-Season?
By Charles Rahrig V
With the off-season almost here for the Arizona Diamondbacks, they will have a surplus of talent with few roster spots. Could they trade one of their outfielders?
Much like their infield, the Arizona Diamondbacks have a surplus of players in the outfield. With the likes of A.J. Pollock, David Peralta, Ender Inciarte, Yasmany Tomás and Peter O’Brien expected to become a full-time member of the roster soon, the Diamondbacks are loaded in the outfield with plenty of other prospects in the minor leagues.
The problem for the Diamondbacks is that like the infield, there isn’t that many spots to go around for all the talent that they have. The big question for the team then, is will they trade one if not a couple of those talented players in the off-season?
It’s likely any deal involving the Diamondbacks trading an outfielder, will be for pitching depth. That same theory probably applies for any infielders that they trade as well. The Diamondbacks have plenty of talented young pitchers, but in baseball, no team can have enough and the Diamondbacks could use arms anywhere they can stick them in the lineup.
The next question would be which outfielder or outfielders would the Arizona Diamondbacks trade this off-season? The easy answer is that it won’t be either A.J. Pollock or Yasmany Tomás. Pollock is having a career season and is likely to get some MVP votes, while Tomás was given a huge contract and the team likes the future that they seen in him.
That leaves Ender Inciarte, David Peralta and Peter O’Brien. This could go a variety of ways. The Diamondbacks like what they have in Inciarte as a lead-off option and his ability to play in the outfield. Peralta has finally begun to hit left-handed pitchers and is becoming one of the better hitters in baseball. O’Brien hasn’t seen much rub at the major league level yet and the Diamondbacks see him as a future power bat in the lineup.
Could it be Inciarte going to a club in need of a lead-off hitter for pitching in return? How about a trade of David Peralta to a club in need of a big time hitter? A Peralta trade would surely bring some big time value in return for a hitter with his peripherals. Perhaps the team wants to cash in on O’Brien’s value still as a prospect and includes him as part of a bigger deal for a star pitcher. Remember, O’Brien was originally acquired as a catcher before being transitioned to an outfield position.
The Diamondbacks won’t have to rush to make a move this off-season because they have options and with the talented outfielders that they have, teams will likely be calling them and not the other way around. If the team really wants to acquire a top pitcher, they could combine some of their infield and outfield depth into one major trade to acquire a serious piece that can make them a playoff team yet again.
A couple members of the Venom Strikes staff discuss whether or not the Diamondbacks will trade an outfielder this off-season.
The Diamondbacks may or may not trade an outfielder, but it won’t be for a lack of trying. The question should be “will the Diamondbacks find a trade partner?” As for whom they attempt to trade, I believe it will be one or both of Inciarte or Peralta. Nothing against either as a player, but neither offers the same combination as Pollock and they need a spot for O’Brien. Tomas is not going anywhere, including back to third base. Lamb is firmly the third baseman, and if not Drury will be given every opportunity. I do expect to see Drury playing second base with Owings back at shortstop . Ahmed is either a backup or traded as well and we know Hill will not be in the mix.
Both Inciarte and Peralta turned a few heads this season, so their stock has never been higher and although they may continue to do well, neither hit as well as a starting trio of O’Brien, Pollock, and Tomas. On top of that, there is no guarantee that either will play substantially better than Zack Borenstein, Gabriel Guerrero, or Socrates Brito to warrant a roster spot and a higher salary.
Like the infield, the outfield has a surplus of Major League talent and many assume one of those players are going to be moved. A.J. Pollock is one of the premier center fielders in the game and Yasmany Tomas as an additional five years on his contract. It is easy for conventional wisdom to suggest that the guys on the block are Ender Inciarte and David Peralta. However, I believe both Inciarte and Peralta will be staying put.
If there is a deal, the guy who is leaving will be Peter O’Brien.
It is not uncommon for a top prospect to be dealt twice. An example would be Travis D’Arnaud who was drafted by the Phillies, traded to the Blue Jays before being flipped to the Mets. More importantly, if the D-backs have playoff aspirations in 2016, why would they trade someone from the league’s highest-scoring offense? I don’t think they would want to place their trust in the unproven O’Brien vs. Peralta or Inciarte who excel not only offensively but also in the field. Arizona stands pat on this front. If not, O’Brien will be on the move to another organization.
The Diamondbacks will probably be one of the most active teams in the trade market this off-season as the new regime continues to mold the roster in their image. They have already done a great job of turning the roster into a competitive one and the future looks a lot brighter than it did a season ago.
Tom brings up a good point about not taking away from one of the best offenses in baseball. That could very well lead to O’Brien being part of a package to another team. Both Inciarte and Peralta play integral roles in the offense of the team and have become fan favorites.
The smart move would probably be to trade the unknown quantity when there is proven above-average to great players at all spots in the outfield. The Diamondbacks will try to get the big fish this off-season and for once they finally have the weapons to do so.
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