Three targets the Arizona Diamondbacks should heavily consider pursuing

The Arizona Diamondbacks should consider pursuing these three players during the upcoming winter meetings.

Mexico's Randy Arozarena (56) looks over to his teammates after hitting a double against the USA
Mexico's Randy Arozarena (56) looks over to his teammates after hitting a double against the USA / Joe Rondone/The Republic / USA TODAY
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Randy Arozarena

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hit free agency after the 2023 season concluded. While the Diamondbacks could fill the void by promoting one of their top prospects, they could go after a proven option, and one of the best, if not the best, outfielder who will at least get some calls is Tampa Bay Rays’ left fielder Randy Arozarena.

Arozarena turned in his third straight quality campaign. In 654 plate appearances, Arozenera batted .254/.364/.425 with a .347 wOBA and 126 wRC+. The outfielder went yard 23 times with 22 stolen bases. Arozenera cut his K% down to 23.9% while his walk rate saw an uptick to 12.4%, both of which were career bests for him. Arozarena is the definition of consistent. He has posted a wRC+ between 124 and 127 through his three seasons. This also marks the third consecutive season he has slammed at least 20 homers with 20 or more stolen bases.

But even though he’s three years into his MLB career, he could continue to improve next year. Arozarena's 91.7 MPH exit velocity, 48% hard-hit rate, and 11.3% barrel rate were career bests by a mile. He clocked in with an xwOBA of .352, the first time he’s accomplished an above-average expected weighted on-base average in his career. He hit far fewer ground balls and many more flyballs and line drives.

His defense, however, is a mixed bag. In the past, he has typically graded out around average to slightly above average, but he had his worst season defensively last year. He clocked in with -6 outs above average with a -1.4 UZR/150. Defensive runs saved was more bullish on his defensive work at +4 runs, but he’s not going to win any Gold Gloves. Still, he’s playable and isn’t going to be a major detriment to an outfield defense, especially one covered by Alek Thomas and Corbin Carroll.

It’s not going to be cheap to acquire Arozarena. He is controlled via arbitration for three more seasons and is projected to make less than $10 million in 2024. But you’re not going to find anyone more steady than Randy. You’re guaranteed 650 plate appearances, a 20/20 season, and a wRC+ of around 125. It may cost a pretty penny (or, in this case, an appealing prospect), but it would be worth it for the Diamondbacks.