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Snake Bytes, 11/9: Changes!

Well, to the uniforms, at least...

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MLB: APR 04 Rockies at Diamondbacks Photo by Kevin French/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Team news

[] Six hot stove moves the Diamondbacks can make to help them contend in 2020 - I propose trading for Pirates center fielder Starling Marte, one of Dayn Perry's top offseason trade candidates, and moving the other Marte to second full-time... Perhaps a Varsho and Widener package with a third piece can get it done. Or Duplantier and Martin if Pittsburgh wants higher end pitching. Arizona has the prospect depth to put together a three or even four-player package good enough to win a Marte bidding war.

[AZ Central] Diamondbacks in position to take advantage of payroll flexibility - “I think we’re moving towards a little bit more flexibility to open up opportunities in the free agent market and trade market,” Hazen said. “I don’t think we’re all the way there yet, but we are moving in that general direction." It seems reasonable to suggest the club could direct at least another $30 million toward next year’s roster. And if the Diamondbacks were to cut ties with infielder Jake Lamb (projected to make $5 million) and/or outfielder Steven Souza Jr. ($4.125 million), they would have even more money at their disposal.

[The Athletic] Diamondbacks offseason blueprint: Time to build — not rebuild — off a surprising 85-win season - But how will the Diamondbacks get better than in 2019? That remains to be seen, but their needs are fairly clear. They need a back-end bullpen arm. They need offensive help, along with capable-or-better defense, in the outfield or at second base — depending on what the Diamondbacks decide to do with Marte, their young and versatile superstar. With top prospects drawing closer to the majors and several big-league stalwarts scheduled to hit free agency after the 2020 season, perhaps it is time for the Diamondbacks to make more of a push to bridge the gap.

[Arizona Sports] Diamondbacks have options to address RF, a position of need - Garcia and Puig seem like two that could have mutual interest in the team. Garcia, a 2017 All-Star who was limited to 93 games in 2018 due to a knee injury, joined the Rays last year and hit .282 with 20 home runs with 72 RBI in 125 games. MLB Trade Rumors projects him to receive a two-year, $12 million contract. Puig has averaged 25 home runs and 74 RBI while hitting .265 the last three years and played 149 games last season. MLB Trade Rumors projects a one-year, $8 million deal.

[FanGraphs] Arizona Diamondbacks Start Rebuild and Accidentally Contend - Perhaps the most shocking thing about the D-backs is just how sustainable 2019 feels. With the exception of some possible regression from Marte, nothing about the 2019 squad’s performance was all that freaky. Only three players on the roster had three-win seasons: Marte, Greinke, and Escobar, who more or less just repeated his 2018. There’s still work to do, but Arizona has the potential to enter 2020 as one of the NL’s primary Wild Card contenders.

[Forbes] Arizona Diamondbacks Undergo Much-Needed Uniform Refresh - Overall, the changes are more than welcome and the Diamondbacks made the right choice in going back to the drawing board again. They needed to go back to basics and they’ve done exactly that with these uniforms. It’s also interesting to note that two of the “new” looks that have been revealed with Nike as the manufacturer have been simple and conservative designs... The Diamondbacks badly needed this fix and they can now rest easy knowing that they will no longer be included any lists concerning ugly sports uniforms.

Around baseball

[Forbes] Japanese Defensive Wizard Ryosuke Kikuchi Hopes To Interest MLB Clubs - The slick-fielding second baseman from Japan is going to have the opportunity to gauge interest on the American open market. Nippon Professional Baseball’s Hiroshima Carp has agreed to make Kikuchi available to MLB teams through the posting system. Kikuchi has won seven consecutive Golden Gloves in Japan. American scouts who have watched Kikuchi believe the defensive skills would transfer and he would immediately be a Gold Glove contender in the major leagues.

[ESPN] The good, the bad ... and the Tigers -- Ranking all 30 MLB teams based on their 2019 goals - 7. Arizona Diamondbacks. After seemingly punting the season in the winter (by trading Goldschmidt), they ended up getting more WAR from the return (Kelly and Luke Weaver) than Goldschmidt produced. Then, while seemingly giving up in late July (by trading Zack Greinke), they added two pretty good starters to their rotation, went 31-22 the rest of the way, stayed alive in the wild-card race well into September and ended up with 85 wins... Few recent teams have so successfully rebuilt in so little time without getting worse in the interim.

[SI] MLB free agents: One player every team should sign - The Diamondbacks have a solid rotation and good, young hitters. Then there’s Ketel Marte, who can start at either second base or centerfield but not both. This free-agent class is thin at both positions, with perhaps their best option being the only non-National to homer off Gerrit Cole this postseason: Eric Sogard. Sogard isn't a season-altering signing, but the 33-year-old nicknamed “Nerd Power” for his signature sports glasses is coming off his best season yet (.290/.353/.457, 2.6 bWAR). He’s from Phoenix, went to Arizona State and could be just the right guy while Arizona waits for prospect Joshua Rojas, whom it acquired in the Zack Greinke trade.