It is time to answer your questions about the Arizona Diamondbacks. Thank you for interacting with us!
Welcome to the long overdue installment of the Venom Strikes. Hopefully, we will get a chance to answer your questions about the Arizona Diamondbacks once a week.
The Arizona Diamondbacks are in the middle of their biggest series of the season against the Colorado Rockies. When your team is in contention, there is nothing like September baseball.
Oh wait…what NFL season?
With J.D. Martinez and Paul Goldschmidt both on a tear, and Zack Greinke pitching like a CY Young candidate, there is plenty to watch with this team. Despite losing the first game Monday, the D-backs have a real chance to distance themselves from the Rockies and hang on to home field advantage for the wild card game.
Playoff baseball for baseball fans in Arizona is likely only three weeks away! Get hyped Diamondbacks fans. While we wait to see how this magical turnaround season finishes, we here at Venom Strikes will answer your questions.
Let’s dive in!
Question #1: Do you think the Diamondbacks can move or dump Yasmany Tomas and possibly Patrick Corbin resign J.D. Martinez? – David Jackson (@DavidJackson81)
The future of #JustDingers in Arizona is definitely a hot topic in Arizona and around baseball. Even though the Diamondbacks are battling for a postseason spot, it is never too early to think about next season.
The Boston Red Sox have reportedly made Martinez their top free agent target this offseason. But Martinez recently told the Arizona Republic he would seriously consider staying in Arizona.
"I’ve thought about it a lot. It’s definitely something I’d love, I’d be interested in. I’ve loved my time here. The guys are great. The team is young. They’re definitely going to be good for a while."
Based on on field performance, there should be no reason why the Diamondbacks should not resign the 30-year-old slugger. But major league baseball is ultimately a business and no team, unless your the Los Angeles Dodgers or New York Yankees, has unlimited sums of cash.
The front office and ownership has to think about players already tied up for next season. Right hander Zack Greinke (34 million), Tomas (13.5 million) and first baseman Paul Goldschmidt (11 million) are under contact and Greinke and Tomas’ price tags are not exactly on the cheap side.
Plus, when you consider that the Diamondbacks will enter the offseason with 11 players eligible for salary arbitration, the payroll could go over the $100 million mark, which is a stretch for a mid market team.
The Diamondbacks also have issues in the bullpen and on the bench to possibly address.
As far as Tomas goes, he hasn’t played much at all this season and while the Cuban native has not committed an error this season, he is a liability in left field. But unless the D-backs are willing to shave off a large portion of Tomas’ salary, the contract is going to be difficult to get rid of.
There could be one or two American League teams willing to acquire him as a designated hitter if the D-backs shave off a good portion of what Tomas is owed, but there are no guarantees.
As far as Corbin goes, he was effective as a reliever last season and has recently turned a corner, minus his last start against the San Diego Padres. I do not think the D-backs want to give him up.
There are other options. Those include dealing from a pool of shortstops or slashing payroll by cutting older players (possibly Fernando Rodney).
Do I think it is likely the Diamondbacks will resign him? No. But I think there is a chance because he likes Arizona and wants to win. A lot will depend on if there is interest in Tomas.
Question #2: What is the biggest aspect of the game that the team needs to clean up before the postseason so they can make a deep playoff run? – Jared McCawley or AZSportsFiend (@JaredMcCawley)
Monday’s game against the Colorado Rockies made the answer to this question abundantly clear.
Manager Torey Lovullo needs to figure out which relievers he can count on in any situation, and who should pitch in high leverage situations.
In my opinion, regardless of the history between Jake Barrett and Nolan Arenado, Barrett had no business pitching to him with two runners on — in a close game — with the amount of pressure riding on that game.
Bradley has the best ERA among relievers in baseball and was warmed up in the seventh inning. Lovullo said Archie was only going to pitch if the D-backs had the lead, but sometimes the game situation should change a manager’s pregame thought process.
In any event, the D-backs only have so many bullpen roster spots available for a possible wild card game. The team will only need to carry one starter for the one-game playoff. As a result, the team can carry more relievers. But who makes the cut?
Right now, left hander Andrew Chafin might be the biggest question mark. After posting a 1.80 ERA in the first half, Chafin owns a 7.27 ERA after the all star break. That might be one of, if not the biggest split in first half and second half performance from a relief pitcher that I have ever seen.
J.J. Hoover, Silvino Bracho and Braden Shipley do not make the cut for me. Barrett has been solid for the most part, so I think his spot will depend on his performance going forward.
For me, Jimmie Sherfy has earned a spot and T.J. McFarland and Jorge De La Rosa are both solid from the left side.
Even though Fernando Rodney imploded in his most recent outing, he has been remarkably consistent for the majority of this season. I would keep him in the closers role, but if the wil card game was close entering the ninth and Bradley was available, I might go to him.
Finally, someone also asked on Twitter if Jared Miller could get called up. He currently has a sub-two ERA at Reno and impressed in the Fall League. With the D-backs struggling in the middle innings, I think he is a good option. But McFarland and De La Rosa are solid lefties and I don’t know if it is a good idea to carry three southpaws in the pen.
Who does Goldy think the DBACKS will face in the NL wildcard game? – @GoldyismyMVP
I don’t know who Golschmidt thinks his team will face, and I think he would not care honestly. He only cares about what his team is doing on a day to day basis, which is probably the way it should be.
Though, it would be cool to pick his brain and get an answer from him. I think the Diamondbacks will hang on to the top spot and host the Colorado Rockies. The Brewers are still contending and so are the Cardinals, but the best two teams have been leading and are still leading. I think it is a safe bet.
Here are the results of our recent poll on this very question!
Thank you to those that submitted questions! I can not answer everyone, but please keep submitting your questions to @VenomStrikes on Twitter or facebook.com/venomstrikes.
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