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2011 Archives http://www.dbacksvenom.com/table/2011-articles/february/ Wed, 01 Oct 2014 22:16:51 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management en-gb Lineup and Pitching Rotation for Today's Spring Training Opener http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/lineup-and-pitching-rotation-for-todays-spring-training-opener.html http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/lineup-and-pitching-rotation-for-todays-spring-training-opener.html The Arizona Diamondbacks open the 2011 Spring Training season today against the San Francisco Giants.  LHP Joe Saunders will be the starting pitcher for the Diamondbacks, and is expected to throw two innings. The planned pitching rotation is for Wade Miley to follow Saunders for two innings, and then one inning each for David Hernandez, Kameron Mickolio, Esmerling Vasquez, Carlos Rosa and Rafael Rodriguez.  

Not much can be read into the starting lineup for Game 1, but here it is:
2B Wille Bloomquist
3B Melvin Mora
RF Justin Upton
C Miguel Montero
LF Xavier Nady
1B Brandon Allen
DH Wily Mo Pena
SS Tony Abreu
CF Cole Gillespie 

Manager Kirk Gibson has said that Brandon Allen will be playing a lot of 1B, which might make him less likely to be competing for the starting LF job.  Allen clearly needs an impressive spring training to force his way onto the opening day roster.

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amitlal@cox.net (Amit Lal) February Fri, 25 Feb 2011 17:14:01 +0000
Baseball America's Top 100 Prospects List Includes 3 Diamondbacks and 14 NL West Players http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/baseball-americas-top-100-prospects-list-includes-3-diamondbacks-and-14-nl-west-players.html http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/baseball-americas-top-100-prospects-list-includes-3-diamondbacks-and-14-nl-west-players.html Baseball America released their list of the Top 100 Prospects in baseball, and the list includes 3 Diamondbacks and 14 players in the National League West.  Leading the way for the Diamondbacks is twenty-two year old RHP Jarrod Parker, who checks in at #33.  Also on the list from Arizona are nineteen year old LHP Tyler Skaggs at #82 and twenty-year old 3B Matt Davidson at #99.

The National League West as a whole has 14 players in the Top 100, with the Diamondbacks, Dodgers, Padres, and Rockies each having three, and the Giants having two.  Each of the five teams has one player in the Top Third of the list.  The highest ranked player in the division is Giants 1B Brandon Belt at 23. Belt jumped all the way from the High A California League to the AAA Pacific Coast League in 2010, putting up an overall line of .352/.455/.610 with 23 HR, 112 RBI, and 22 SB in 30 attempts. He also walked 93 times while only collecting 99 strikeouts.  Following closely behind Belt are Dodgers SS Dee Gordon (26), Padres RHP Casey Kelly (31), Rockies LHP Tyler Matzek (32), and Parker at #33.  Overall, the Kansas City Royals led the way with 9 players, followed by the Rays with 7 and the Braves and Yankees with 6.

Here is the complete list of NL West prospects in Baseball America's Top 100.
Diamondbacks (3) - RHP Jarrod Parker (33), LHP Tyler Skaggs (82), 3B Matt Davidson (99)
Dodgers (3) - SS Dee Gordon (26), RHP Zach Lee (89), Rubby De La Rosa (90) 
Giants (2) - 1B Brandon Belt (23), RHP Zach Wheeler (55)
Padres (3) - RHP Casey Kelly (31), RHP Simon Castro (58), 1B Anthony Rizzo (75)
Rockies (3) - LHP Tyler Matzek (32), C Wilin Rosario (49), 3B Nolan Arenado (80)

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amitlal@cox.net (Amit Lal) February Wed, 23 Feb 2011 17:25:43 +0000
Diamondbacks Spring Training Recap - Week 1 http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-spring-training-recap-week-1.html http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-spring-training-recap-week-1.html The Diamondbacks have completed their first week of Spring Training, and the most notable items of Week 1 are optimism, competition, veteran leadership, Wily Mo Pena in Batting Practice, and lots of Tweets from Barry Enright.

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amitlal@cox.net (Amit Lal) February Mon, 21 Feb 2011 21:27:17 +0000
Diamondbacks Sign Russell Branyan - Is Brandon Allen headed back to AAA? http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-sign-russell-branyan-is-brandon-allen-headed-back-to-aaa.html http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-sign-russell-branyan-is-brandon-allen-headed-back-to-aaa.html In a somewhat surprising move, the Diamondbacks have signed 1B Russell Branyan to a minor league contract with an invitation to Spring Training. Branyan has played for six teams over the last four seasons - Padres, Phillies, Cardinals, Brewers, Mariners, and Indians - and has shown outstanding power everywhere.  His stats for the last two seasons probably make him the best power threat on the team:

2009: .251/.347/.520, 31 HR, 76 RBI, 58BB, 149K, 130 OPS+
2010: .237/.323/.487, 25 HR, 57 RBI, 46BB, 131K, 125 OPS+

Although Branyan has played 1B, 3B, LF, and RF over his career, he has been primary a first baseman for the last two years, and has actually been decent defensively. Like ex-Diamondback Mark Reynolds, he hits for a low average (career .234) with a lot of strikeouts (176 Ks per 162 Games) and a fair number of walks (career .330 OBP).  

Is Branyan now the favorite to win the 1B job? If he has overcome the back injuries and pizza-parlor mishaps of the last two years, probably. But Branyan has always had a significant platoon split; in 2010 he had an .844 OPS against RHP but dropped to .626 against LP.  For his career, he is at .841 against RHP and only .733 vs. LHP.  The previous choice to play 1B, Juan Miranda, also bats left handed, so a platoon won't work there. But Miranda is out of options, so he will probably also stay on the roster.  If Branyan could still play 3B, he would be a good partner for Melvin Mora. But Branyan was never a good defensive 3B even before his back problems flared up.

Is this trouble for Brandon Allen?  It could be, because there are only a few roster spots available. If Branyan does make the team and Miranda is kept as a reserve since he is out of options, would the Diamondbacks want another LH slugger on the roster?  Allen's best hope is to win the LF job over Xavier Nady and Gerardo Parra. That would leave a bench of Nady, Miranda, Blum, Bloomquist, and Blanco. But more likely is that Nady starts in LF, Parra stays as a backup OF, and Allen goes back to AAA. 

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amitlal@cox.net (Amit Lal) February Wed, 16 Feb 2011 23:40:53 +0000
Diamondbacks Non-Roster Invitees, Part 2 - Position Players http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-non-roster-invitees-part-2-position-players.html http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-non-roster-invitees-part-2-position-players.html The Diamondbacks have announced that 20 non-roster players (players not on the 40-man roster) have been invited to Spring Training. The list includes 9 Pitchers, 2 Catchers, 4 Infielders, and 5 Outfielders. In the last article, we looked at the pitchers; here is a look at the 11 position players.

CatchersRossmel PerezP.J. Pilittere
Infielders -  Paul GoldschmidtChris OwingsCody RansomAndy Tracy
OutfieldersCollin CowgillMarc KraussWily Mo PenaA.J. Pollock David Winfree 

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amitlal@cox.net (Amit Lal) February Fri, 11 Feb 2011 19:41:47 +0000
Diamondbacks Non-Roster Invitees, Part 1 - Pitchers http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-non-roster-invitees-part-1-pitchers.html http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/diamondbacks-non-roster-invitees-part-1-pitchers.html The Diamondbacks have announced that 20 non-roster players (players not on the 40-man roster) have been invited to Spring Training. The list includes 9 Pitchers, 2 Catchers, 4 Infielders, and 5 Outfielders. The group includes both top prospects who will be rewarded with a taste of major league competition, such as Chris Owings, Marc Krauss, and Paul Goldschmidt, as well as veterans who have outside chances at making the major league team, but probably will serve as minor league depth, such as Cody Ransom and Andy Tracy.   

Pitchers - Matt Gorgen, Mike Hampton, Wade Miley, Micah Owings, Jarrod Parker, Rafael Rodriguez, Daniel Stange, Brian Sweeney, Clay Zavada
Catchers - Rossmel Perez, P.J. Pilittere
Infielders -  Paul Goldschmidt, Chris Owings, Cody Ransom, Andy Tracy
Outfielders - Collin Cowgill, Marc Krauss, Wily Mo Pena, A.J. Pollock, David Winfree

In this article, we'll take a look at the nine pitchers.

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amitlal@cox.net (Amit Lal) February Wed, 09 Feb 2011 07:04:16 +0000
How the West Was Won - D'Backs Venom http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/how-the-west-was-won-dbacks-venom.html http://www.dbacksvenom.com/2011-articles/february/how-the-west-was-won-dbacks-venom.html Bloguin NL West Logo
Each day this week, a member of the Bloguin family will preview the upcoming 2011 season for each of the NL West Teams. The Giants Cove (Giants), RJ's Fro (Padres), The Rockie Mountain Way (Rockies), TetreaultVision (filling in for the Dodgers) and D'Backs Venom (Diamondbacks), will all give their 2 cents for their respective teams. Completing the series, here is my take on the Diamondbacks' upcoming season. 

Past Posts
Monday: Richard Dyer of The Giants Cove
Tuesday: RJ of RJ's Fro
Wednesday: Joe Dexter of Rockie Mountain Way
Thursday: Joe Tetreault of Tetreault Vision

 D'Backs Logo

ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
1. 2010 Record
Although most predicted the Diamondbacks to finish above .500, the 2010 team stumbled to a 65-97 record, 27 Games out of first place, and 15 games behind the 4th Place Dodgers.

2. Key Additions
SP Zach Duke, SP Armando Galarraga, RP J.J. Putz, RP David Hernandez, RP Kam Mickolio, RP Joe Paterson, 1B Juan Miranda, 3B Melvin Mora, IF Geoff Blum, IF Willie Bloomquist, C Henry Blanco, 1B/OF Xavier Nady

3. Key Losses
SP Brandon Webb, SP Rodrigo Lopez, SP Kris Benson, RP D.J. Carrasco, RP Blain Boyer, 1B Adam LaRoche, 3B Mark Reynolds, IF Augie Ojeda, OF Ryan Church, OF Rusty Ryal

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amitlal@cox.net (Amit Lal) February Wed, 02 Feb 2011 03:30:13 +0000