On Thursday evening, we learned that Diamondbacks are on the verge of taking the first step to changing up the personnel when Steve Gilbert of MLB.com reported that Arizona was close to signing veteran utility man Geoff Blum to a one year deal. This would represent what is likely to be first of numerous moves in order for this team. Also, this is first step to changing up the bench options and we'll take a look at what Blum can bring to the table after the jump.
Kevin Towers stated from the day 1 that his priority will be shoring up the league worst bullpen and adding a veteran bat or two to the bench that mostly boasted young hitters such as Gerardo Parra and Rusty Ryal. He stuck to his word as reports came out saying we are close to signing 12-year veteran Geoff Blum. Blum, while playing for the Houston Astros last season, played first, second, short, and third and also has experience playing the left and right field in his career as well. This provides Diamondbacks with a significant flexibility off the bench. His bat's not too shabby as well as he hit for .267 with couple homers and 22 RBIs in a part time role in what was his down year. Two years prior to that, he has hit for double digit homers (10 in 08 and 14 in 09) and has a good pitch selections as well.
What he's forte is, however, is his pinch hitting ability. In total of 200-some plate appearnces last season, pinch hit at bats covered 44 of them and he had a slash line of .333/.364/.405, very good numbers to have coming off the bench. He'll likely serve as the team's main pinch hitter off the bench (as the roster stands now) and will be that super utility player who can sub in to give our regulars rests and fill in for the injured like Craig Counsell and Augie Ojeda has done in the past.
As it stands, our bench consists of
INF Rusty Ryal
INF Geoff Blum
OF Gerardo Parra
And this of course can change as Allen is likely to start in left and Hester is likely to be in competition for a roster spot in spring training with Konrad Schmidt. Ryal and Parra's spots are not the safest thing in the world either with KT preferring veterans over younger players so this is part of the team that could see much change from the end of season to now. This also probably concretes Augie Ojeda's likely departure. Geoff Blum's addition is not the significant one, but it can definitely be rewarding at the end.