ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

D-backs GM Mike Hazen doesn’t anticipate ‘major’ overhaul to team

Sep 30, 2020, 7:26 AM
Diamondbacks GM Mike Hazen (Matt Bertram/Arizona Sports)...
Diamondbacks GM Mike Hazen (Matt Bertram/Arizona Sports)
(Matt Bertram/Arizona Sports)

The Arizona Diamondbacks will have changes this offseason, but after failing to meet expectations for the 2020 season to such a high degree, how big will those changes be?

General manager Mike Hazen answered that on Tuesday.

“I don’t believe it’s major, from an overhaul standpoint of the lineup,” he said.

“We have good baseball players. We have good hitters in our lineup. Some of those hitters … we tailed backwards a little bit as a group.”

The question needed to be asked because all of the D-backs’ 2020 starters are under team control for next season. The team, of course, will need to replace some of the pieces they gave away at the trade deadline, like Starling Marte in center field and Archie Bradley and Andrew Chafin in the bullpen.

While hitters like David Peralta and Christian Walker recovered in the second half of the season to put together decent years, others still continued to struggle. Ketel Marte (.732 OPS), Carson Kelly (.649 OPS) and Eduardo Escobar (.605 OPS) all saw major dropoffs in production. The cut, in fact, of that trio’s combined OPS from 2019 to 2020 was 652 total points.

“It’s hard to put exactly a finger on (it),” Hazen said of the offensive struggles. “Looking at the 60-game season from the individual players’ standpoint, it becomes a little more difficult to put the 60-game season into context in my mind.

“I think we need to do a better job of night-to-night consistency, and that is going to be (not only) a continued area of focus, but an area of focus going into the offseason.”

As far as the starting pitching goes, Hazen doesn’t see a ton of shuffling there, either.

“I feel pretty good about the starting pitching,” Hazen said. “We got off to a little bit of a rough start in that area.”

The biggest concern for the front office has to be the performance of ace Madison Bumgarner, who even after 10 scoreless innings to close out the year ended the season with an ERA of 6.48.

One young starter performed strongly in Zac Gallen (2.75 ERA) but another in Luke Weaver (6.58 ERA) had a turbulent season coming off injury in 2019. Robbie Ray was traded after a disastrous seven starts and Merrill Kelly pitched five outings before a nerve issue in his shoulder required thoracic outlet surgery that ended his season.

Ray’s rotation place could be filled by Caleb Smith, who came over in the Starling Marte deal and posted a 2.45 ERA over 11.0 innings.

Regardless of the personnel, Hazen saw the same problem this season he’s seen in the past few.

“We go into these periods during the course of the season where we need to start shortening down times of the year that are costing us in the end,” he said. “And that has happened over the last couple of years where we’ve gotten into these ruts … and we need to do a better job of getting ourselves out of those ruts and back into more consistent play.”

Penguin Air

Comments

Comment guidelines: No name-calling, personal attacks, profanity, or insults. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate comments by reporting abuse.
comments powered by Disqus

Arizona Diamondbacks

Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel flips the rosin bag during the second inning o...
Wills Rice

D-backs avoid sweep with rollercoaster win vs. Tigers in Keuchel’s debut

Dallas Keuchel and the Arizona Diamondbacks secured an 11-7 win over the Detroit Tigers on Sunday in his debut with the team.
1 day ago
Arizona Diamondbacks' Daulton Varsho (12) celebrates his three-run home run against the Detroit Tig...
Arizona Sports

Watch: D-backs’ Daulton Varsho clears pool to cap 5-run inning vs. Tigers

D-backs CF Daulton Varsho sent a 435-foot blast at Chase Field to punctuate a five-run sixth inning Sunday against the Detroit Tigers. 
2 days ago
Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel throws a pitch against the Detroit Tigers duri...
Alex Weiner

D-backs LHP Dallas Keuchel limits damage during inefficient team debut

Dallas Keuchel took the hill at Chase Field for the first time as a member of the D-backs Sunday and provided 4.1 innings.
2 days ago
Dallas Keuchel #60 of the Chicago White Sox pitches during the first inning against the New York Ya...
Arizona Sports

D-backs select LHP Dallas Keuchel to big league roster, will start Sunday

The D-backs selected LHP Dallas Keuchel from the Rookie ACL D-backs and the former Cy Young winner will make his first start on Sunday. 
2 days ago
Detroit Tigers first baseman Spencer Torkelson fields a grounder by Arizona Diamondbacks' Josh Roja...
Arizona Sports

Former ASU star Spencer Torkelson ‘trusting the process’ in rookie season

Despite his struggles to start his MLB career, former Sun Devil Spencer Torkelson is positive he will be able to turn things around.
2 days ago
Detroit Tigers' Javier Baez (28) is caught stealing by Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zach D...
Alex Weiner

D-backs drop 5th straight with loss to Tigers: ‘These are grinding times’

The Tigers took a 6-3 lead in the sixth inning Saturday night, and the D-backs never got the game-tying run to the plate.
3 days ago
D-backs GM Mike Hazen doesn’t anticipate ‘major’ overhaul to team