’s Tom Verducci: D-backs’ starting rotation could keep them in NL West hunt

Mar 29, 2013, 10:31 PM | Updated: Mar 30, 2013, 10:50 pm
Follow @AZSports...
LISTEN: Tom Verducci , MLB Analyst

The Arizona Diamondbacks may not be favored by many analysts to win their division, but MLB senior writer Tom Verducci points to one area of their roster that could quiet all doubters.

Verducci told Arizona Sports 620’s Doug and Wolf Friday that the D-backs’ starting rotation could keep them in the National League West hunt.

“I like the fact that they are going to fight you, but the big picture to me is their pitching,” Verducci said. “I think their starting pitching is a little bit underrated. I like the idea that there’s really no age there whatsoever, and they also have a pretty good inventory. When the inevitable injury pops up and they have to drop down to starter No. 6 or 7, they’re still in pretty good shape. That’s what I like about the Diamondbacks more than anything.”

The D-backs’ starting rotation has looked strong in the spring, and Verducci believes one free agent acquisition in particular could prove to be a major upgrade for the staff.

“Brandon McCarthy may be the key for me because I have always liked him, but I think he’s really due for a breakout season,” Verducci said. “Not a back-end of the rotation guy but a front-end of the rotation guy. If that happens kind of like what happened with Kennedy and Hudson a couple of years ago, then yeah, I definitely think they can contend.”

McCarthy, who signed with the D-backs back in December, looks to improve upon his 8-6 record last season with the Oakland Athletics. McCarthy’s 2012 campaign was cut short after he was struck in the head by a line drive off the bat of the Angels’ Erick Aybar on September 5, but he’s shown no ill effects this spring and is slated to pitch Wednesday against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Overall, Verducci said the D-backs have an under-the-radar shot of finding themselves atop the division come October.

“I actually think they’re a little bit of a sleeper team,” said Verducci. “They’re not getting a lot of attention other than what they gave up, but I think they can contend in the West.”

Arizona Diamondbacks

Gabriel Moreno #14 of the Arizona Diamondbacks works out at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on F...
Kellan Olson

Arizona Diamondbacks believe Gabriel Moreno is ready for bigger role

Gabriel Moreno will be the Arizona Diamondbacks' everyday catcher soon enough but it might happen even sooner than expected.
1 day ago
Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo speaks with reporters after a 7-4 spring training loss t...
Jake Anderson

Diamondbacks still have major roster questions as Opening Day looms

With only six days until Opening Day, D-backs skipper Torey Lovullo still has to get the active roster down from 36 to 26.
1 day ago
Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Luis Frias (65) shakes hands with Diamondbacks catcher Grayson Greiner...
Arizona Sports

D-backs option Ps Luis Frias, Kyle Nelson to Triple-A Reno

The Arizona Diamondbacks optioned pitchers Luis Frias and Kyle Nelson to the Triple-A Reno Aces on Friday.
1 day ago
Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zac Gallen throws against the Colorado Rockies during the fir...
Arizona Sports

D-backs name Zac Gallen as Opening Day starter for 2023

Zac Gallen will start for the Arizona Diamondbacks next Thursday for Opening Day against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
1 day ago
Major League Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr. speaks, Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2023, during ...
Arizona Sports

Timing makes D-backs media rights complex for MLB to obtain

Why would the Padres become the first team ahead of the D-backs that triggers MLB to head to court in an attempt to obtain their rights?
1 day ago
Arizona Diamondbacks' Josh Rojas (10) celebrates his home run against the Colorado Rockies with Dav...
Haboob Blog

D-backs’ Josh Rojas calls David Peralta ‘a traitor’ while mic’d up vs. Dodgers

D-backs 3B Josh Rojas didn't mince his words on Thursday when talking about former teammate and current Dodger David Peralta.
2 days ago’s Tom Verducci: D-backs’ starting rotation could keep them in NL West hunt