For a while it seemed as though the disgrace better known as the Arizona Diamondbacks bullpen was a thing of the past.
Joe Paterson, Micah Owings, David Heranndez and J.J. Putz were rolling, stifling hitters and locking down late leads.
The month of June has brought a few hiccups, though, the most recent of which was an 8th inning meltdown in Detroit, one that saw Aaron Heilman and David Hernandez combine to allow six runs in two-thirds of an inning.
“This bullpen has peaked, this bullpen needs help, this bullpen needs a shot of something,” Paul Calvisi said on Sports 620 KTAR’s Sports Interactive. “You know what, if the All-Star Game was this weekend, OK, you make it through, you could tough it through another five or six games and make it through.”
However, as Calvisi notes, there are 13 games left before the break, meaning the time to make a move would be now.
“D-backs, if you keep waiting for the bullpen to recover it’s not going to happen, they’re going to have to do something about it,” he said.
That’s where things get a little tricky.
“I am very hesitant on what the cost of that bullpen arm might be,” Dave Burns said on the show. “I am concerned with giving up a middle to top prospect somewhere in your farm system to get an arm because…I don’t think this year is worth it for the Arizona Diamondbacks.”
That may not be what D-backs fans want to hear, but he’s probably right. Just because nobody expected the Diamondbacks to have much success this year doesn’t mean this opportunity should be dismissed, but the team must be careful not to get caught up in the moment while forsaking the future. While it is nice to see a Major-League caliber team for the first time in a couple years, it’s important to keep the goals in perspective.
“You don’t need to be a postseason contender in year one of the Kevin Towers regime, and you certainly don’t need to go scouring through your minor league system and gutting it in the name of making yourself a contender right now,” Burns said.
Are the Diamondbacks, even with another arm in the bullpen, serious contenders? That’s the question Towers needs to ask himself, and the answer may lead to disappointment for D-backs fans — this year.