I remember the day of Game 5 the 2011 NLDS very well. Because MLB schedulers have no respect for my schedule at the time, it occurred on the same day I was opening a production of Chicago in Tucson which I was the Stage Manager for, meaning that I would miss a good chunk of the game. Well, watching it anyway. There was a radio I could use while setting up at the theatre, and I'd be damned if I missed that. I watched the first few innings at Old Chicago with Snakepit member Emily, then left when I had to. As I was pulling out, Justin Upton hit a solo shot off of Yovani Gallardo, and I did a very loud and not-breath-supported "WOOOOOOOOOO F**** YEAH!" in my car.
A few hours later, while setting up a light board, Nyjer Morgan got a hit off of J.J Putz to end the game, and I let out a more anguished "F***" Had I known the next five years of Diamondbacks history, I probably would have let out a longer string of explatives, probably the length of Suite: Judy Blue Eyes. (Probably to the same tune as well: "IT'S GETTING TO THE F*** THAT I'M HORSES*** ANY G**D***") As you probably know, the Diamondbacks haven't made the playoffs since. The following offseason, I was made a writer on this site. I'm sure there's no correlation.
Kevin Towers spent that offseason diagnosing things that could help the Diamondbacks get over the top the next season, and then did the exact opposite. Sure, Jason Kubel should go into an already strong outfield mix. That's a thing that makes sense.
But really, the staggering thing in the last five years has been how each piece, slowly, has been dismantled or shipped off elsewhere. With the assumed (Note to self: edit later if this actually happens before press time) trade of Daniel Hudson, the only two Diamondbacks left on that playoff roster on the 2016 team are Paul Goldschmidt and Josh Collmenter, both of whom were rookies in 2011. To put it another way: There are as many players who were on the Brewers NLDS team in 2011 (Weeks, Greinke) on the Diamondbacks in 2016 as there are Diamondbacks. Here's a roundup of every member of that playoff roster and Where They Are Now(TM):
Micah Owings - Bounced around the league awhile as both a pitcher and 1st Baseman in the minors. Now in New York playing Indie Ball
Brad Ziegler - Traded to the Red Sox earlier this season
David Hernandez - Signed with the Phillies last offseason after some up and down years with Arizona with a TJ surgery thrown in there
Ian Kennedy - Somehow got the Royals to give him a lot of money after being traded to San Diego in 2013. Apparently on the trading block now. Somehow Cy Young worthy in 2011 and 2011 only.
Joe Saunders - Traded to Baltimore in 2012. Somehow got to start a Wild Card game for them... and won! Last pitched in 2014
Bryan Shaw - Traded to Cleveland in the Bauer-Gregorius trade. where he's been mostly decent.
J.J. Putz - Retired, and currently calling radio for the game going on right now (Thursday afternoon)
Joe Paterson - LOOGY by design was made to pitch against righties, did poorly, was sent to the minors because reasons. Last pitched in the majors in 2014 and currently out of pro baseball.
Jarrod Parker - Traded to Oakland for Trevor Cahill in the following offseason. Has been often injured, to a depressing degree.
Henry Blanco - Retired, and probably fighting vigilantes in South America with a Machete.
Miguel Montero - Traded to the Cubs for a package including Zack Godley. The only Catcher in Diamondbacks history to be the recipient of a diss track (at least until I drop my fire mixtape about Johnny Estrada)
Aaron Hill - Traded to the Brewers last offseason in the Segura deal. Has since been shipped off to Boston.
Sean Burroughs - After somehow finding a spot on the Diamondbacks after five years out of the bigs, went to the Twins for 2012, which was his last Major League season.
Ryan Roberts - Traded to Tampa Bay in 2012. Last was in the bigs in 2014 for the Red Sox
Willie Bloomquist - Went back to Seattle for a bit. Now is one of many former Diamondbacks with a cushy vague front office job.
Geoff Blum - I genuinely forgot he was on the Diamondbacks. Only played 17 games in 2012, never seen in the majors since.
Lyle Overbay - Was the defacto starting First Baseman for a smidge of 2012 while Goldy was figuring things out. Bounced around to Atlanta, The Yankees, and Milwaukee before retiring.
Collin Cowgill - Was part of the Cahill trade. Currently bouncing between Triple-A and the Majors with Cleveland.
Gerardo Parra - Traded to the Brewers in 2014. Currently with the Rockies, cause he's a jerk who hates our feelings.
Chris Young - Traded to Oakland in the 2012-2013 Offseason as part of the flurry of interconnected moves that eventually brought Heath Bell to Arizona. Currently platooning with the Red Sox
Justin Upton - I'm sorry I don't know who that is or what their story might be.
That's just the playoff roster. That doesn't even include current National and future World Champion Stephen Drew, who missed those playoffs because he broke his ankle in horrific fashion during the season.
I don't know when the next Diamondbacks playoff team will be, but I sincerely hope that it doesn't follow another number of years of futility and slow dismantling, but future GM Willie Bloomquist will probably do that.
For now, let's just imagine that game on that October day ended after the Third Inning.