Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Out of Sight... 

... and out of mind.

The advantage of watching the Diamondbacks lose 5-0 to the Florida Marlins in Miami Tuesday night is that it's real easy to not watch the Diamondbacks. 4 PM starts are easy to ignore, as are 3-hit performances by your favorite squad of ballplayers.

It's quite difficult to find positives from such a shellacking... oh, wait, the bullpen pitched 3 innings of scoreless ball. There you go. Of course, it's akin to a stellar performance by the junior varsity in a preseason game. It means something, but not much. The only other news from the game is that Conor Jackson didn't hit 2 homeruns in his start. But we didn't expect that to happen every start, now did we?

Javier Vazquez's less-than-stellar performance makes me dwell on his future with the team. Vazquez is scheduled to make, what, $12 or $13 million next year? Could the Diamondbacks put that money to better use in the free-agent pitching market in the offseason? After a merely adequate season such as this one, could the Diamondbacks get anyone of value in return for Vazquez's $25+ million 2-year contract? Would Vazquez be happy with any team that could offer the Diamondbacks someone valuable? And with Vazquez's merely adequate season, he's likely to not bother to declare himself a free agent, as he has the ability to do later this offseason. (Then again, with the slim free-agent pitching pickings, he might very well be able to get a similar contract for more years with a team of his choosing.) For many reasons, it would've been better for everyone concerned if he'd gone 13-7 rather than 9-11.

Many roster moves -- Stinnett off the DL, Gosling down to Tucson, the upcoming Ortiz activation and likely Hill return to Tucson. Plus, the Republic speculates that Brandon Lyon could be coming off the DL as early as this weekend. Add to those moves upcoming activations of Villarreal and Estes, and if I were in the Diamondbacks' bullpen, I wouldn't be making close friends anytime soon.

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