Updated Jun 24, 2013 - 5:58 pm
ESPN's Law: Heath Bell is holding the Diamondbacks back
So is the opinion of ESPN MLB analyst Keith Law, who said when asked what he thinks of the D-backs that he would have a different answer if they had a different pitcher trying to lock down late leads.
"They've had a lot of things go really well for them, including the Dodgers kind of imploding," Law told Arizona Sports 620's Doug and Wolf, noting Los Angeles has not run its club very well and thus created a chance for Arizona to run away with the NL West. "It feels like every time they're about to do that, Heath Bell just kind of pulls them back down to the pack."
Bell, in his first year with the team after being acquired in the offseason from the Miami Marlins, has converted 13 saves on the year but is carrying a 5.02 ERA. He's allowed a home run in each of his last five appearances, and failed to record an out before surrendering two runs in a blown save over the weekend against the Cincinnati Reds.
Though the D-backs have not had a save opportunity since that night, skipper Kirk Gibson said Bell is still the team's closer.
Granted, that could could change when J.J. Putz (elbow) returns, but for now it appears little will be changing with regards to the 'pen. But other than finding consistency with their relievers, Law believes the Diamondbacks, who lead the division with a 41-34 record, really don't need to do much more to compete for a postseason spot.
"I don't think they need to make a ton of changes to the rest of the roster going forward," he said, adding the team has starting pitching depth and is set to get some key injured players back in the near future. "How much would they really need to do between now and the trade deadline, maybe acquire another relief piece or two?"
Law said unless a "bona-fide" ace becomes available, there really isn't much for the team to do roster-wise. Because while the D-backs currently lack that, they're probably better off just rolling with what they have.
"At least get yourself into the postseason, and you never know, you might face another club that's in the same situation where they don't have a true ace, either."
Adam Green, Web Content Editor - ArizonaSports.com
- Tim Kurkjian, ESPN MLB insider - Wednesday April 23ESPN MLB insider Tim Kurkjian discusses what the D-backs need to do to turn things around.
- Kevin Towers, D-backs GM - Wednesday April 23What can be done to save the season?
- Kirk Gibson, D-backs manager - Tuesday April 22D-backs manager Kirk Gibson talks about the team's struggles.
- Bickley Blast - Monday April 21Dan goes off on the struggling D-backs.
- Tim Kurkjian, ESPN MLB Insider - Thursday April 17Tim Kurkjian talks about the Diamondbacks' tough start to the season.
- Bickley Blast - Thursday April 17Bickley blasts Kevin Towers' philosophy and the need for an analytics GM.
- Derrick Hall, D-backs President and CEO - Thursday April 17Is it too early to make a change?