The Diamondbacks are trying to sign these 3 pitchers according to sources!
According to The Athletic reporter Zach Buchanan, the Arizona Diamondbacks are interested in signing 3 pitchers and are interested in more, but these three are the ones he’s been able to put names to. Those three are Wily Peralta, Bryan Shaw, and Hunter Strickland. Now, those names are not exactly the free-agent bullpen pitchers that we were hoping they would be going after. Would they be a good signing or good for the team? Well, let’s find out.
In case you forget, Bryan Shaw is a former Diamondbacks relief pitcher. He pitched with the team from 2011 to 2012 after being drafted by the club in the 2008 draft. He’s a steady arm that’s solid for middle innings. What you see is what you get. He’s an innings soaker having led all pitchers in games pitched 4 times in his career. The 34-year old is coming off a good year for a relief pitcher from Cleveland. This was his 2nd stint in Cleveland.
Last year, he went 6-7 with a 3.49 ERA, 81 games (led league), 2 saves, 77.1 innings, 38 walks, 71 K’s, 126 ERA+ (100 is league avg), and had a solid 8.3 K/9 average. While he walked a few too many batters, it was a solid season and would’ve been the best out of the Dbacks bullpen last year. Imagine having a reliable and healthy relief pitcher in the Diamondbacks bullpen. That’s something we haven’t had in a while. If the price isn’t exorbitant, this would be a solid 1-year deal.
What about Wily Peralta? He’s a name that many Diamondbacks fans probably haven’t heard of before. He’s a veteran right-handed pitcher that’s mainly played for the Brewers or Royals. Last year, he did play for the Tigers. He’s a flexible pitcher in that he’s pitched 92 games out of the bullpen and started 138 games. He didn’t pitch in the 2020 season. He’s a steady arm that will give you favorable results more times than not. He’s not anyone’s #1 bullpen arm, but he can fill a variety of roles and keep your club competitive.
Wily’s the type of arm that winning clubs need. Rarely will he lose your games, but he doesn’t win you games. He just eats up innings and gets players out. Last year, he went 4-5, 3.07 ERA, 19 games, 18 started, 93.2 innings, 38 walks, 58 K’s, 138 ERA+, 4.94 FIP, and 2.0 WAR. That’s rather really good for the 32-year old. His walk rate, 3.7, is a bit high and does create some nerves. Luckily, it’s not the end of the world and perhaps Strom can fix it. He limits hard contact by maintaining a high ground ball percentage. With a good defense behind him, he can succeed. The big thing is he is not a fly-ball pitcher which is something the Dbacks need. If they can get him on a cheap 1-2 year deal, he’s a solid addition to our long/middle relief corps.
The final name that was listed is Hunter Strickland. Yes, that Hunter Strickland who fought Bryce Harper in Oracle Park years ago. Strickland’s another veteran relief pitcher that’s been up-down over the past few years. Last season, he pitched with the Rays, Angels, and Brewers. Despite that, last year was his best year in the MLB since 2018. The Rays probably had something to do with that.
Over his 8-year career, Strickland’s proven to be a capable 7th-inning pitcher that can get outs in clutch situations. He’s dealt with a few health and technique issues in 19′ and 20′. He seems to have fixed that as in 2021, across 3 teams, he pitched in 57 games, went 3-2, threw 58.2 innings, had a 2.61 ERA, 4.19 FIP, 163 ERA+, 1.159 WHIP, and struck out 58 batters to only walking 22. Once again, that would’ve been the best bullpen performance on the team last year. Even as a relief pitcher, he still was worth 1.0 WAR which is impressive. Another highlight is that he is excellent at limiting hard contact as last year he only allowed 29.6%. Another 1-year deal is probably in the cards for him, and I’d say it’s worth it to sign him for that.
The bullpen can’t get much worse, I hope. At least the Diamondbacks are talking to bullpen pitchers and not waiting until the last second. This is progress!
May the Force be with you…