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Snake Bytes, 7/20: Back to business

Seems a lot longer than five days since the D-backs last played. Time to get the second half under way!

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Team news

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks still like their chances despite Manny Machado trade - Based on how active General Manager Mike Hazen was at last year’s trade deadline, the Diamondbacks seem to be expecting additions at some prior to July 31 non-waiver deadline. That said, they feel they have enough underperformers on their roster that any holes on the roster could be filled internally. “I know there’s guys in here, including myself, we just haven’t played the way we’re capable of,” Souza said. “I think as soon as we do that, we’re a really good ballclub, no matter who we add. Our bullpen has been really great, our starting pitching has been great. Yeah, we’ve had an up-and-down year, but I still feel like we’re the team to beat in the division.”

[The Athletic] Manny Machado to LA doesn’t demoralize Diamondbacks – The Athletic - The Diamondbacks indeed have been in the position of acquiring one of the most impactful players available at the deadline, so they know the dopamine surge Stripling may have been experiencing. But, having lost the Machado derby only to see him sent to their division rival in a tight playoff race, are they demoralized? “Yeah, I feel like I should just go home now,” Steven Souza Jr. said sarcastically before considering the question more seriously. “No, he’s a really good ballplayer. I don’t have a really good answer for that. He’s a good ballplayer, but we have a really good ballclub. He’s only going to be able to bat four times in a game. I got nothing. I know it’s not demoralizing for us.”

[AZ Central] Former Arizona Diamondbacks in MLB vs. current team: Who has the edge? - Five former Diamondbacks were on the National League and American League rosters for the game, compared to three current Diamondbacks. That got us thinking ... how would a team of former Diamondbacks stack up against the team of current Arizona players? Which team would have the edge overall? With a little research, the Heat Index compares the best players no longer on the Diamondbacks with the team's current roster.

[The Athletic] The Chainsaw Elf: Inside the engineering mind of Andrew Chafin - Chafin is a whip-smart polymath, and somewhat of an engineering savant. Baseball may be how Chafin makes his living, but his passion is pulling things apart and putting them back together again, with increasing levels of complexity. “When he looks at something, he sees it from the inside out, as opposed to the outside in,” said Diamondbacks right-hander Zack Godley, Chafin’s closest friend on the team. “Not a lot of people can do that.”

[Arizona Sports] By the Numbers: Paul Goldschmidt's roller coaster season - .377. As good as Goldschmidt’s June was, he has been hitting for a higher average in July. After posting a highly impressive .360 average in June, he’s maintained that torrid pace at the temperatures heat up throughout the country. 13.4%. The percent of Goldschmidt’s plate appearances that ended in walks. As one of the game’s most patient hitters, his ability to get on base in a variety ways is one of the key reasons he’s become an offensive force.

[MLB] D-backs’ top Statcasts from 2018. Christian Walker’s 479-foot home run and Chris Owings’ impressive catch highlight the D-backs’ top Statcast plays from the first half of ‘18

And, elsewhere...

[ESPN] How deadline dominoes will fall following Machado deal - No matter who San Francisco, Arizona and/or Colorado lands before the trade deadline, no individual player acquired will likely offset the production Machado will generate for L.A. But the Diamondbacks, Rockies and Giants have been engaged with other teams, looking to plug holes. Rival evaluators say the Diamondbacks are highly motivated to follow up on their fast start, in what may be a narrowing window of opportunity: center fielder A.J. Pollock and pitcher Patrick Corbin are headed into free agency in the fall.

[Forbes] Prime-Time TV Ratings For Each Team At The MLB All-Star Break - When the books close on the 2018 Major League Baseball regular season, there will be discussions about how league attendance was down. But how is the game being received on television? Based on Nielsen Media numbers by way of FOX Sports, the ratings offer more optimism. The data for the 29 U.S. teams in prime time shows that on the regional sports networks that host them, baseball continues to be popular.

[SI] MLB expansion: Rob Manfred on possible cities Portland, Las Vegas - In an appearance on FS1's First Things First, Manfred mentioned six potential expansion cities and explained that the addition of new teams would also lead to division and playoff realignment. Manfred elaborated that MLB has a "real list of cities, that I think are not only interested in having baseball, but are viable in terms of baseball. Portland, Las Vegas, Charlotte, Nashville in the United States, certainly Montreal, maybe Vancouver, in Canada," Manfred said. "We think there’s places in Mexico we could go over the long haul.”