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Nightengale: “The D-backs expect to strip down the team”

Or do they...?

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News: Hurricane Irma Jack Gruber-USA TODAY

After a season which started with so much promise, only to end barely above .500, the Diamondbacks have far more questions than answers this winter. Even the basic direction of the team is unknown: we’ve already discussed the three possible ways Mike Hazen and team could go. As usual, Hazen has kept his cards close to his chest, telling Arizona Sports last week, “I think we need to assess what’s going to happen to those key pieces, whether we can keep them or not, and if the answer is no, how do we replace them? And if we don’t replace them, where does that leave us? Those are the questions we have to ask ourselves in the next 30 days.”

However, there are indications already that the team has made the decision, if Bob Nightengale’s Tweet this morning is to be believed.

If the team is going full rebuild, then it makes sense to get the ‘For Sale’ signs hanging out there as soon as possible - if not, perhaps, publicly, at least in terms of letting other teams know who is potentially available. But this shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, and you might not want to read too much into it. For also per Hazen, “I think one of the takeaways for us was just to get a feel for what the trade market would be for various guys, evaluate the free-agent market as it comes out and see what happens, and reconvene.” So it is also quite possible this is him doing the baseball equivalent of looking up your house on Zillow, just to see what it’s worth.

While Nightengale’s Tweet is certainly consistent with the Diamondbacks going into full rebuild mode, it doesn’t necessarily mean that’ll be the case. What he describes could just as well be Hazen doing inventory, and seeing what the team’s assets are worth, before deciding a course of action. Still, with no baseball scheduled until the NLCS starts up on Friday, it’s certainly something to talk about!