Three free agents that could make the Arizona Diamondbacks National League West favorites

The Arizona Diamondbacks could target these three free agents to make themselves National League West favorites.

Sep 15, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Jordan Hicks (12) pitches to
Sep 15, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Jordan Hicks (12) pitches to / Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
3 of 4
Next
Sep 20, 2023; San Diego, California, USA; San Diego Padres starting pitcher Seth Lugo (67) throws a
Sep 20, 2023; San Diego, California, USA; San Diego Padres starting pitcher Seth Lugo (67) throws a / Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Seth Lugo

I know what you may think. Why do the Diamondbacks need another starting pitcher? Isn’t Zac Gallen, Merrill Kelly, Eduardo Rodriguez, and Brandon Pfaadt good enough? While I agree it’s good enough, we aren’t looking to settle for good enough. I want to see five, really good starting pitchers in this rotation next year. So, let’s get a little bold and still go after Seth Lugo.

The Diamondbacks were connected to Seth Lugo earlier this off-season. That may still be the case, even after signing E-Rod. Lugo was given his first chance to regularly start games in the majors by the San Diego Padres last season, and it went extremely well. Lugo pitched to a 3.57 ERA, 3.86 FIP, and 1.20 WHIP in 146.1 innings of work. His 23% strikeout rate, 6% walk rate, and 1.17 HR/9 were all above league average as well.

Lugo’s underlying stats also painted a decent picture. He had a 3.76 xFIP, 3.97 SIERA, and a DRA- of 91, compared to an ERA- of 86. The only knock on Lugo is he wasn’t great at limiting hard contact. He had a 90.7 MPH exit velocity, 44.2% hard-hit rate, and 9.6% barrel rate, all of which were below the 25th percentile.

Imagine what that rotation would look like if the Diamondbacks added Seth Lugo. If Lugo is only your fifth-best starting pitcher, then you’re doing something right. That would give the Diamondbacks five starting pitchers who could all post an ERA well below 4.00. That’s not something many starting rotations can boast in MLB. Maybe only the Seattle Mariners, but definitely not anyone in the National League.