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Arizona Diamondbacks 20th Anniversary Team: Right Field

After a short break over Christmas, it’s back to choosing the 20th Anniversary Team. Right field has two candidates: the first a top overall pick that developed into a 5-tool player in his time in Arizona and the second a defensive wizard in the outfield. I was originally thinking about adding Yasmany Tomas, but I’d rather make it a 1-on-1 match-up because only two outfielders deserve this honor anyway. Between the top two candidates, after digging through some numbers, the two players aren’t too far off in terms of production relative to wins. One player has all his value on offense and the other all on defense.

Justin Upton: Upton was the first overall pick of the 2005 Draft, a draft that produced multiple superstars. Upton never developed into a top-flight star, but piled together solid seasons. A 2011 season that had him finish 4th in the MVP race was where I thought would be the start of something big, but ultimately a injury-plagued 2012 plus Ken Kendrick opening his dumb mouth caused an eventual divorce between the two sides. Upton was supposed to be the face of the franchise, which he was from 2009-2012, but that honor slipped to Paul Goldschmidt. It’s a shame how his tenure in AZ ended, I thought he was definitely capable of more, but he stuck around to being an All-Star level player.

Gerardo Parra: Perhaps no outfielder played better defense than Gerardo Parra, although there are some that can claim to be in the same area code. Parra came up in 2009 and lingered around until he finally got an opportunity as a starter in 2013 after the Upton trade. He put in a 3 WAR season as a platoon OF in 2011, but it seemed like the organization didn’t believe in him being a starter until they had no choice. In 2013, Parra put up a monster season in the field, being 41 runs above average defensively with most of his games in RF to offset a middling bat for a 6.1 WAR season (matches Upton’s best season). Parra won two Gold Gloves (2011, 2013) and the Wilson Defensive Player of the Year in 2013.

Top RF in Dbacks History

Player Years Games PA OPS+ bWAR All-Star Top 10 MVP
Player Years Games PA OPS+ bWAR All-Star Top 10 MVP
Justin Upton 2007-2012 731 3030 118 12.2 2 1
Gerardo Parra 2009-2014 787 2910 94 11.8 0 0


Top RF in Dbacks History?

This poll is closed

  • 62%
    Justin Upton
    (101 votes)
  • 37%
    Gerardo Parra
    (60 votes)
161 votes total Vote Now