Updated Jan 22, 2014 - 7:50 pm
Arizona Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers: Archie Bradley will be in '14 rotation if 'he's one of our best five'
But the 25-year-old phenom won't be coming to the desert. Instead, Tanaka inked a seven-year, $155 million contract with the New York Yankees.
Tanaka's signing in the Bronx leaves Arizona with a starting rotation which looks a lot like it did at the end of the 2013 season -- Patrick Corbin, Wade Miley, Trevor Cahill, Brandon McCarthy and Randall Delgado.
Of course, the D-backs could pursue another starter in a much smaller free agent deal or explore trades with other Major League franchises.
Or, there's Archie Bradley.
The 21-year-old was selected by the D-backs with the seventh pick of the 2011 MLB First-Year Player Draft and has excelled wherever he's pitched in the minors.
In 2013, Bradley went 14-5 with a 1.84 ERA in 26 starts at Single-A Visalia and Double-A Mobile. Earlier this month, the Oklahoma native was named the top right-handed pitching prospect in baseball by MLB.com.
Arizona general manager Kevin Towers was a guest of Burns and Gambo on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Wednesday and said Bradley may not be far off from pitching for the big league club.
"He's gonna come in here blazing, he thought he was ready last year in July or August," Towers said. "From what we've seen -- the velocity, the fastball command is there, the breaking ball is there, he's strong, he's durable, he's powerful. The higher we've moved him up, the better he's been.
"I would not be surprised if he opens up a lot of eyes and puts a lot of pressure on us to open up with him. If he's one of our best five we'll do it."
There was talk, mostly from the fan base, that the D-backs would call Bradley up to the Majors late last season, but the organization decided against it.
Towers is much more open to the idea of having Bradley as part of the 2014 rotation if he's good enough to earn a spot in spring training.
"We're not going to sit there and worry about the free agency clock and try to save a year of arbitration," he said. "We want to go out and win ball games and if Archie Bradley is one of our best five, he'll start the season come Opening Day."
Vince Marotta, Co-host - Bickley & Marotta, Web Content Editor - ArizonaSports.com
- Anderson, Diamondbacks destroyed by Nationals for fourth loss in a row: By The Numbers
- Arizona Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson would be 'honored' to return next season
- Report: Arizona Diamondbacks plan to retain Kirk Gibson
- LaRoche's homer lifts Nationals to third straight walk-off in defeat of D-backs
- Nationals get third straight walk-off win, beat D-backs in extras: By The Numbers
- Kirk Gibson, D-backs manager - Tuesday August 19Kirk Gibson talks about his future with the Diamondbacks.
- Who impressed/who depressed - Monday August 18Dan and Vince look back at who impressed and depressed them over the weekend.
- Tim Kurkjian, ESPN MLB insider - Friday August 15Tim Kurkjian discusses what new commissioner Rob Manfred means for Major League Baseball.
- What's on your mind? - Friday August 15Vince Marotta shares what he is thinking about this week.
- Bob Nightengale- USA Today Sports MLB columnist - Friday August 15Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports thinks Kirk Gibson could keep his job next season.
- Bickley Blast - Friday August 15There is a new commissioner in the MLB, and Dan Bickley previews the transition that is coming.
- Bickley Blast - Wednesday August 13Dan worries that there may be a confrontation between Miguel Montero and Trevor Bauer coming.