I've already gone on about how the Diamondbacks passive base running during the first six games of the NLCS was baffling, given the reputation they gained for speed on the base paths during the regular season. During Game 7, it seemed like someone from inside the organization shook them by the shoulders and told them to put the burners on again. Corbin Carroll, their 25/50 rookie who had only two postseason stolen bags prior to Game 7, doubled his total in one night, and one of them led to Carroll scoring from second on a Gabriel Moreno single to take the lead.
The Diamondbacks will need to keep the momentum going into the World Series against a Texas Rangers team who have just as much to prove, and beyond the base running, there are improvements that still need to be seen from Arizona. They haven't enjoyed the same amount blowouts the Philadelphia Phillies managed against them, or that Texas enjoyed against the Houston Astros for that matter. It'll be up to the pitching staff to keep the Rangers from watching balls leave the park, yes, but the Dbacks lineup will also need to provide run support.
Whose performances need to improve for the Diamondbacks?
With just as many games played in the postseason as the Diamondbacks, the Rangers are outdrawing them in pretty much every offensive category. Texas is up on Arizona by 20 runs, 14 hits, and 17 RBIs. In the regular season, the splits are even more drastic and all come up in Texas' favor. Here are four Dbacks who need to start banging in the World Series.
Christian Walker ended the regular season as Arizona's home runs leader, with 33 to Ketel Marte and Corbin Carroll's 25, and doubles leader, with 36. He's gone quiet in the postseason though, with only seven hits and only one home run to newbie Alek Thomas's four. He does lead the team in walks, but also is among its leaders in strikeouts with 14. It's only his second postseason following one plate appearance for the Dbacks in 2017, so maybe the pressure of the season is getting to him.
If that's the case, he'll need to get over it. As Arizona's usual clean-up bat, following a hot Ketel Marte and an improving Corbin Carroll who, god willing, will challenge pitchers and get himself into scoring position if he can, Walker will need to come through with runners in scoring position. Now more than ever, the Dbacks need the power they're missing from him.