Diamondbacks Trends: The First Half

USA TODAY Sports

The second half of the 2013 season is just around the corner. In fact, it's not even that far away: it's tomorrow! Let's take back at both the last two weeks and the players' first half performance.

Starting Rotation

Player Trend Notes
Ian Kennedy
down
In his past two starts, Kennedy pitched 12 innings (unable to get out of the 6th or 7th inning) and allowed 11 runs (10 earned). And it's not like Ian was facing the Red Sox or anything, it was just the Dodgers and Brewers. Coming off of his 7-inning, 2-run performance in New York, Kennedy has earned his down arrow.
C
Mid-Season: The only time Kennedy's ERA has been below 4 was the first game of the season. He's averaged only six innings a game and his ERA sits at 5.42. He has shown flashes of his old self, but he is a long way from the ace he was in 2011. Ian has now shaved off the beard, so maybe things will improve.
Wade Miley
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Miley went eight solid innings in each of his last two starts. He gave up only one run to the Rockies, that on a solo home run. The three runs Wade gave up to the Brewers at home were also all on home runs. While a little unsettling, Wade bounced back from being down early and kept his team in the game.
B-
Mid-Season: While Wade also has only averaged about six innings per start, that average seems skewed by a few very short outings. He more regularly pitches into the 7th or 8th innings. But, only twice all year has Wade had a scoreless outing.
Patrick Corbin
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star
Corbin went into the All-Star break on a very high high: in back-to-back outings, he struck out 10, matching his career high. He also allowed only one run to the Rockies (solo home run) and Brewers.
A
Mid-Season: If you thought Patrick Corbin would be the ace of the staff this season, well, give yourself a pat on the back. The guy did not lose a game until July! That isn't because the D'backs offense let him off the hook after rough outings, it's because he didn't have rough outings. Only twice (until his loss in New York) did he allow four earned runs. Corbin was a well-deserved All-Star.
Randall Delgado
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While not as good as his game against the Mets, Delgado performed as needed in the Los Angeles and Milwaukee series: six innings, three earned runs apiece. He struck out a combined eight batters and only walked one.
B+
Mid-Season: Delgado has been exactly what was needed for an injury-replacement, back-end starter. He averages over six innings a start (has never come out of the game mid-inning) and has given up three or fewer (earned) runs. What more can you ask?
Tyler Skaggs
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Skaggs had a fabulous outing against the Colorado Rockies - eight innings, five strikeouts, and no runs allowed, and he earned himself his second win of the season. But he struggled against the Dodgers, giving up eight hits and three walks in just 4.1 IP. Three of those runners scored on his watch, and he was pulled with the bases loaded in the 5th.
B-
Mid-Season: Up up down down left-- oh, wait, wrong game. Poor Skaggs probably knows the way from Phoenix to Reno better than anybody. He was even sent to Class A Visalia to keep him on turn during the break. With all the injuries to the starting rotation (hey, remember that "5th starter job" competition they had in spring training?), it looks like Skaggs will be needed for a few more weeks.

Bullpen

Player Trend Notes
Heath Bell
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Bell blew the one save he got in the Dodgers series, the one game the Diamondbacks were close to winning. He pitched well in the 8th inning the next two games, stranding three runners and striking out two, earning two holds.
C+
Mid-Season: Bell has, at various times, been the bullpen's savior and arch nemesis. He's saved 14 games and blown five. He earned seven saves in a row, had a 9-game scoreless streak, and then gave up five home runs in five consecutive games. Ladies and gentlemen, The Heath Bell Experience.
Josh Collmenter
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Collmenter took his second extra-innings loss this year when he gave up solo home runs to the Dodgers in the 14th inning. Before that, he had pitched four scoreless innings starting in the 10th. Outside of that game, he had a scoreless 9th in a win against Colorado and got out of a jam in the 7th on Sunday against Milwaukee.
B+
Mid-Season: For a while, the magic formula was Extra Innings + Josh Collmenter = WIN! That's not so much the case after two losses, but Josh has been invaluable in the role of long / late relief.
Eury De La Rosa
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Made his major-league debut on Sunday and pitched two scoreless innings of relief, striking out three. Good job, but you're too new to get a mid-season grade.
Will Harris
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With all the late-inning bullpen problems recently, it was inevitable that Harris would be used in higher-leverage situations. Twice last week he came in with the bases loaded, and both times all three runners were stranded. He earned his first hold and second win.
A-
Mid-Season: For a guy picked up off of waivers in early April, Harris has been a mainstay in the bullpen since mid-May. He's only had one really poor outing (walking two with the bases loaded in Atlanta) and, yes, he's been mainly low-leverage, but he's proving he can be valuable in any situation. We'd be in a world of hurt without Harris in the 'pen.
David Hernandez
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After struggling mightily on the east coast trip, David did alright here at home. In two scoreless 9th innings, he struck out a combined three, earning his second save against the Brewers. But he allowed a solo home run in the 7th inning of the one Dodgers game we were close to winning.
C+
Mid-Season: I don't know what has happened to the previously-dominant David Hernandez, the guy we all assumed would be closer after J.J. Five times this year he allowed two or more runs (as many as four in Atlanta); he's blown five saves; and he's taken five losses. The 8th inning isn't quite so relaxing as it has been...
J.J. Putz
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After his fifth blown save of the year in New York, Gibson announced plans to use J.J. in other situations. Since then, he's done pretty well - these past two weeks, he had 3.2 IP, all scoreless, no inherited runners, and two holds earned. He gave up one hit and one walk to the Brewers.
C
Mid-Season: From the beginning, it was clear this year's Putz wasn't as solid as last year's. If you look at his decisions in BBREF, you see they pretty much alternate between save/win and blown save/loss. It felt like he was rushed back from his mid-May Disabled List trip and hasn't yet gotten back to form, though he is improving.
Tony Sipp
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Except for allowing two inherited runners to score in one of the Dodgers games, Sipp had a decent week - 2.1 IP, the one hit to L.A., one walk, and six strikeouts. He stranded the other five runners he inherited.
B
Mid-Season: A majority of Sipp's outings have been less than an inning. When he allows inherited runners to score, they comes in pairs (10 of 32). He keeps the ball in the park, but his WHIP of 1.434 is a little higher than a late-inning reliever should ideally have.
Brad Ziegler
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Ziegler has become the de-facto closer after the struggles of Putz, Bell and Hernandez. He earned his second and third saves and 11th hold of the year. His four appearances were all scoreless.
A-
Mid-Season: Ziegler has been by far our most reliable arm in the 'pen. Only seven of the 37 runners he's inherited have scored, he's only given up two home runs, and he's only really had two "bad outings" - one recently in New York where he allowed three inherited runners to score (and, later, his baserunners scored), and in April he allowed two runs to the Giants and took his only loss. Ziggy gonna Zieg!

Starting Lineup

Player Trend Notes
Gerardo Parra
down
Parra has been playing at nearly-full-time since his tumble in New York, but he hasn't been playing like the Parra he was before that. Parra hit just .125/.152/.156 the past two weeks with one double and eight strikeouts. He did have a successful sac bunt in his one pinch-hit appearance.
A-
Mid-Season: There were many who felt Parra could've been Arizona's third All-Star. (But why a 1st-place team would get three spots over a 4th-place team, I don't know....) He certainly does it all in the field, and his average, until the last two weeks, hovered around or over .300. He had 35 extra base hits. Now, if we can just nail his feet to the bag (6 SB / 9 CS)...
Aaron Hill
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Hill had a decent end to the second half, with a line of .256/.286/.436 with a home run and six RBI. Interestingly, he really struggled in the three games the D'backs won against Milwaukee, going 0-for-11, whereas he went 2-for-4 in Sunday's loss.
A-
Mid-Season: It's hard to grade a guy who played in only 30 of the team's 95 games. Luckily for everyone, it seems Aaron's offense barely missed a beat while recovering from his broken hand - he's come back and put up solid numbers. A key piece of the lineup, for sure.
Paul Goldschmidt
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star
Stellar numbers from the All-Star going into the break: .412/.524/.618/1.141 the past three series. Paul had eight RBI and eight walks, two intentionally. Only on Saturday did he go 0-for-4.
A+
Mid-Season: No doubt, the team would be nowhere close to first place without Goldschmidt. He has 21 homers (nearly three times more than the second-highest on the team), 23 doubles, and an NL-leading 77 RBI. His 82 Ks are highest on the team, but so are his 49 BBs.
Martin Prado
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Martin had an 0-for-10 in three games of the past three series, which dropped him to 8-for-35 and a .229 avg / .233 BAbip. He drove in six, including a two-run home run against Colorado.
B-
Mid-Season: Prado certainly hasn't turned out to be the player Arizona fans expected him to be. His numbers of .253/.303/.365/.668 are well off the average of his time in Atlanta, a line of .295/.345/.435/.780. That's a small consolation - he should improve in the second half. And the team is in first place despite Prado's low numbers.
Miguel Montero
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Montero was 6-for-31 these past two weeks, for a .194 average. But average isn't everything; he had five walks and a HBP for a OBP of .306. Even OBP isn't everything - look at Miggy's slugging, at .484. Whaaat? That's right, three of those six hits were home runs, and he drove in five. When he doesn't hit, he doesn't hit bad, and when he hits, he hits pretty good. (Slogan of the Year?)
B-
Mid-Season: Like Prado, Montero's numbers are way below his career average. A bad year for Miggy would be hitting at a .250 average, and he's currently hitting .224. It says a lot about the state of the team when even in a down year, he has the second-most home runs and walks and third-most RBI.
Jason Kubel
down
Forget mediocre, Kubel was downright bad at offense the past two weeks. He had two hits (a .100 average) in six starts and two pinch-hit appearances. He struck out seven times. He did have a key solo home run in one of the Milwaukee wins.
D
Mid-Season: Even accounting for last season's second half drop-off, Jason's six doubles and five home runs are well down from his 30-30-30 numbers of last year. He won't come close to 90 RBI, either (he's at 27 this year). With Eaton back and Kubel struggling at the dish and in the field, he looks to be trade bait the second half.
Cody Ross
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You first look at Cody's numbers for the last three series and see, "Wow! .321/.345/.393, not bad!" Yeah, going 5-for-5 isn't too shabby at all! But the 0-for-4 and 0-for-6 days bring you back to earth a little bit. Still, Cody's been pretty reliable with the bat, getting on base to score five runs.
B
Mid-Season: I don't expect Cody to go 5-for-5 or 4-for-7 every game. His power is down a bit from his career average, but he's had more games with a hit than without, and he's been pretty clutch as well. His good defense in the field has been a positive surprise to many.
Didi Gregorius
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Didi still hasn't truly adjusted to Major League pitching yet. He was 5-for-21 in his last seven starts. His best day was going 2-for-3 with a home run in Saturday's win. The 0-for-3/0-for-4 days are not impressive.
B
Mid-Season: What can you expect from a guy with eight major league games under his belt? Didi's defense has been as advertised, and his power has been a nice surprise. A .275 average certainly isn't bad, but he might be a bigger help to the team if he can perform well enough to hit higher in the lineup.

Bench

Player Trend Notes
Eric Chavez
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Chavez went 3-for-8 with two doubles and three RBI in one game in each of the last three series.
B+
Mid-Season: Eric's first half numbers are better than anything he's put up in years. It's unfortunate that he had to spend nearly a month on the DL, but we knew the risk for injury going in. Him succeeding this well as a platoon guy is a testament to his hard work. And he can still pick it like a Gold Glover over there at third.
Adam Eaton
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Eaton has three hits since being activated from the DL during the Dodgers series. His first hit was a triple. Spanky Speed is back. (But he doesn't get a mid-season grade.)
Wil Nieves
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Nieves went 0-for-6 in the extra-long Los Angeles game.
A-
Mid-Season: Does any other team's backup catcher hit .362/.392/.420/.812? He's hitting .400 as a pinch-hitter, with two doubles and four RBI. He has two doubles and eight RBI in fewer games as a starter. Happily over-performing his career average is Nieves.
Cliff Pennington
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Pennington was 2-for-13 in three starts this week.
C
Mid-Season: Pennington was always going to be platooning with someone at shortstop; we just figured it would be with Willie Bloomquist instead of Didi Gregorius. Cliff has always hit lefties better than righties, a trend that is continuing here in Arizona. His defense is better than expected, his offense, not so much. Still, in essentially a straight-up trade for Chris Young, it seems like we're winning.
A.J. Pollock
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A decent two weeks for Pollock, going 6-for-23 with two doubles and two triples. He scored six runs. His best day was going 3-for-6 in the 15-inning loss to L.A.
B
Mid-Season: Pollock too is developing a trend of hitting lefties much better than righties. Being so young, he's also understandably kind of bad as a pinch-hitter (2-for-15). He had such a good first third of the season that seeing him struggle offensively in June and July is tough. At least he's remained a stud on defense, but with Eaton back, he won't be seeing regular playing time, so he has to adjust his hitting.

Disabled List

Player Trend Notes
Willie Bloomquist
bandaid
Well, obviously, it wasn't a "contused" hand, it was broken. Willie is out another 4-6 weeks.
B
Mid-Season: After missing the first 54 games of the season, Willie came back and went on beast mode with his bat, hitting everything in sight. Even after the expected drop-off, he ended the first half at .292/.342/.347/.689 in 22 games.
Trevor Cahill
bandaid
No news recently on Cahill.
C+
Mid-Season: Until June, Cahill was a solid #2 behind Corbin. His June ERA was 9.85, his BAbip was .402. A lot of that came before the injury, so that's no excuse.
Daniel Hudson
bandaid
Hudson is home and recovering from Tommy John surgery #2. He said today that he almost has all of his range of motion back.
Brandon McCarthy
bandaid
According to Jack Magruder, McCarthy threw 61 pitches in a simulated game last weekend, was scheduled for a bullpen session today, and will need at least two rehab starts before he returns.
C-
Mid-Season: It took Brandon a long time to adjust to a new routine/new coaching staff/new league/etc. It was May before he had his first quality start of the year. He was doing much better before his typical mid-year injury, which seems to have gone on a bit longer than normal.
Matt Reynolds
bandaid
No news recently on Reynolds.
A
Mid-Season: Reynolds was money before his injury. It was May 12th before he allowed his first (own) run. He had two saves (one blown) and five holds.

Stats run from 7/5 - 7/14, plus the entire first half.

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