Reports: Diamondbacks continue to look for offense after free agent moves
Dec 19, 2023, 4:06 PM
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
The Arizona Diamondbacks may not be done despite checking three significant boxes off their winter checklist after Lourdes Gurriel Jr. reportedly agreed to return.
Both ESPN’s Jeff Passan and USA Today’s Bob Nightengale reported the D-backs remain actively looking for another bat after handing out the third most guaranteed money in MLB this offseason so far: Gurriel agreed to a reported three-year deal worth $42 million and pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez has a four-year, $80 million contract.
The D-backs are going to have the most expensive payroll in team history the way they are currently constructed with free agent designated hitters J.D. Martinez and Justin Turner still on their radar, according to Nightengale.
A full-time designated hitter is something the Diamondbacks essentially had in the postseason with Tommy Pham, who was kept off the field due to turf toe but remained in the lineup. Pham split time between outfield and DH in 50 regular season games.
The way the lineup shakes out minus a full-time designated hitter projects as follows:
Catcher: Gabriel Moreno
First base: Christian Walker
Second base: Ketel Marte
Third base: Eugenio Suarez
Shortstop: Geraldo Perdomo
Outfielders: Corbin Carroll, Alek Thomas, Lourdes Gurriel Jr.
Jake McCarthy, Dominic Fletcher, Jordan Lawlar, Pavin Smith, Emmanuel Rivera and Jace Peterson are other options on the 40-man roster who contributed in 2023 with Pham and Evan Longoria still free agents.
There remains a long list of free agent hitters and possible trades to go down.
Besides Martinez and Turner, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reported the D-backs had interest in Jorge Soler, although that was before the Gurriel deal. Teoscar Hernandez and Joc Pederson are also bat-first outfielders on the market, as is catcher/DH Mitch Garver, first baseman Carlos Santana, utility man Whit Merrifield and former Diamondbacks David Peralta and Eduardo Escobar to name a few.
Arizona also has nearly all its trade ammunition.
The Diamondbacks were able to acquire Suarez in November with backup catcher Seby Zavala — a waiver claim late last season — and reliever Carlos Vargas, so their prospect pool has been largely untouched this offseason with the exception of third baseman Deyvison De Los Santos (Rule 5 Draft).