Spring Training Final Round-Up: Opening Day is Here!

Kevin Towers thinks about what it'd be like without his right arm. - USA Today Sports

When the cold and arduous winter of little to no baseball news passed us by a month ago, we all rejoiced at the sight of Pitchers and Catchers reporting for Spring Training. With their arrival, our hopes of having meaningful baseball games started to become visible. Now that time has come, as the Texas Rangers and the Houston Astros face off today with the rest of baseball following up on April 1st... and that's no joke!

Quotient Quotables

All I worry about is our club. There’s a plan. There’s a process. We knew what we were doing. We don’t worry about what other people think.

-- D-backs GM Kevin Towers on the team's offseason trades.

Goldy is probably the type of guy that if he wanted to hit a lot of home runs, he could. But that’s not his game. What I like about Goldy is that he’s usually good with runners in scoring position, uses the whole field, he has a lot of power. He knows that he has good power. His at-bats are usually to the scoreboard and what he needs to do at that particular time. He has good balance and no fear at the plate. This guy still has less than two years of major league experience and only about four or five years of pro ball.

-- Kevin Towers and his assessment of Paul Goldschmidt

I struggled a little bit early but was able to come back. The ball was coming out fine. Before I was just kind of guiding it in there and it didn't have that late life. I just need to throw it instead of thinking about it, just go out and let it fire.

-- Wade Miley analyzes his final start of Spring Training

Diamondbacks News


FanGraphs Staff Predictions

Like many of the nations' writers and bloggers, FanGraphs has recently released their season's predictions. While love for the D-backs is unfortunately few and far between, with only 4/31 writers picking them to win a spot in the playoffs, co-founder of USSMariner.com and contributor to the Wall Street Journal Dave Cameron has them winning the NL West. Adam Eaton received two votes for NL Rookie of the Year, but with him on the shelf for 6-8 weeks early on this season, it may hurt his chances.

Cactus League Prospects

Mike Newman, owner/operator of ROTOscouting, recently took to the back fields of the Cactus League to scout some of the up and comers of the minor leagues and three D-backs, Stryker Trahan, Matt Davidson, and Chris Owings, were all mentioned in his summary. (Note: As he only scouted the Mariners, Indians, D-backs, Rockies, Rangers and Cubs, this is not a comprehensive list at all, just an accounting of what he saw) Our highest ranked was the teenager and last year's 26th overall pick, Stryker Trahan coming in at #6.

Trahan had the loudest power of any teenaged prospect scouted in Arizona. Add a 1.99 pop time between innings and it becomes easy to dream about his being the heir apparent to Miguel Montero. However, Trahan’s stocky, muscular frame limits his mobility behind the plate making it difficult to project him at the position long term. My experience tells me a move to first base is in Trahan’s future, but he’s a better backstop than Jesus Montero was the same age.

Ender Inciarte, another prospect lost in the Rule 5 Draft?

Best of luck to Inciarte as he tries to stick with the Phillies as their 5th outfielder. There has been some concern as to whether or not he will stay on the team when Delmon Young returns, but at any rate, it will be great to see what he can do at the MLB level.

News of Note in Baseball

Vernon Wells Unsure of How He'll Fit In With Aging, Overpaid Yankees

Following his blockbuster move from the Los Angeles Angels, outfielder Vernon Wells admitted Thursday that he is apprehensive about fitting in with his new teammates on the aging, overpaid Yankees roster. "I just hope I can I can fit in with guys like Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Mariano Rivera, Kevin Youkilis, Mark Texeira, Ichiro Suzuki, and CC Sabathia," said the 34-year-old Wells, who will be making $42 million over the next two seasons. "Hopefully, we can find some common ground and come together quickly." Team sources later confirmed Wells had fit in perfectly in the Yankees locker room after fracturing his leg and going on the disabled list for the next two months.

-- The Onion

Tomohiro Anraku throws 391 pitches, James Andrews' faints, Dusty Baker rejoices

While the game is the same, the rules on pitch counts and what is and isn't good for your arm may not apply in Japan as a 16-year-old threw in back to back complete games with only 3 days of rest between the two games. The unusual result came from an event called "Spring Koshien", which is Japan's major spring high school tournament. If that is shocking now, just wait until Saibi High's next game on Monday, when we may yet again see Tomohiro pitch and make history. While not as impressive as Daisuke Matsuzaka's Koshien debut in 1998 when he threw a 148-pitch complete game shutout, then followed that up the next day with a 250-pitch, 17-inning win, it is still impressive when you realize he is 2 years younger than Dice-K.

The End of a Weird Era

ESPN goes crazy, predicts every day of the season

My favorite prediction for this upcoming month which I may or may not wish to happen is:

April 14: Ryan Braun is caught on television injecting a suspicious substance into his arm in the dugout during a game. But he avoids any punishment on a technicality thanks to a small typo in the report issued by Major League Baseball.

If you'd like to read more, Start Here and continue from month to month. The Diamondbacks are mentioned twice, the word "grit" zero times.

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