[Yahoo] Madison Bumgarner explains why he prefers to play for an underdog team - "I like the way they go about it here -- it's more my style of baseball than a lot of places -- and I also enjoy being on an underdog-type team, more so than the team that's supposed to win," Bumgarner told The New York Times. Despite the change of scenery, the idea of winning has never escaped his mind. Upon joining the Diamondbacks, his main goal was to win another World Series trophy. The mentality of others doubting the team assists in Bumgarner's desire to achieve that goal. "At least, it always has for me," he said. "I've never needed people's approval to think I was good or think I could be successful or win a game. I like it better when you're not expected to and then you do."
[AZ Central] How Jake Lamb's written words helped restore confidence - Last Aug. 25, on the team flight from Milwaukee to Los Angeles, Lamb decided to start keeping a journal. “When you first start,” Lamb said, “you’re like,’ Whoa, what do I write? Do I write what I’m not doing well at? Do I write what I’m good at?’” The answer was all the above. And pretty much anything else. Lamb just started writing whatever popped into his head. He found it both therapeutic and educational. “I just legit wrote everything I was thinking positive, negative – mostly negative – whether it was about myself, whether it was about another team, whether it was about another guy I faced. Just whatever,” he said. “I found if I wrote it out, I was able to laugh at it a couple of minutes later. It was like, ‘Why am I even thinking about that?’”
[dbacks.com] Here are the D-backs' 2020 Top 30 Prospects - The real strength of Arizona’s system, however, is its wealth of high-ceiling, lower-level prospects -- players who are several years away from reaching the Major Leagues. That notion is reflected by the fact that four of the organization’s Top 100 prospects will enter the 2020 without Double-A experience. They help comprise a group 18 players on the D-backs' Top 30 who have an ETA of 2022 or later. That type of long-term depth should allow for the organization to manage any potential roster turnover or net them an impactful return via a trade should they take that route.
[Arizona Sports] D-backs top prospect rankings: Kristian Robinson leads the way - Tracking a handful of publications, it appears that people are on the same page about the Diamondbacks boasting a handful of MLB’s top prospects going into 2020. From there, the opinions are somewhat mixed. We know this much: Outfielder Kristian Robinson and catcher Daulton Varsho are among the three best prospects in the D-backs’ organization. Everyone also agreed that Geraldo Perdomo and Alek Thomas are among the top 100 prospects in baseball. There was some disagreement, however, on where to rank each player.
[Brewbound] Anheuser-Busch's Four Peaks Announces New Brew for the 2020 Baseball Season - The Arizona Diamondbacks and Tempe-based Four Peaks Brewing Co. have teamed up to bring fans a brand new beer for the 2020 baseball season. Rattle On Red Ale—a smooth, toasty ballpark beer brewed to pair with peanuts, dogs, and dingers—debuted in Arizona this week and will be available at Diamondbacks games throughout the 2020 season. “Diamondbacks fans know it better than anyone else: A good beer is an essential part of any ball game,” says Four Peaks founder and head brewer Andy Ingram. “We wanted to give them a beer that would take the fan experience to the next level whether they’re watching the D-Backs at home, at a bar, or at Chase Field.”
[The Athletic] ‘We’ve got some dudes’: For the first time in years, Arizona has a power bullpen - In 2018, Arizona ranked 26th with an average of 92.9 mph. Last season, they were 28th at 93 mph. But that mark almost certainly will go up in 2020. Of the six relievers seemingly guaranteed to make the team — holdovers Bradley, Andrew Chafin, Yoan López and Kevin Ginkel along with free-agent acquisitions Héctor Rondón and Junior Guerra — only Ginkel’s fastball sat lower than the 2019 major-league relief average of 93.8 mph, and his was awfully close. And every single one of those six pitchers tops out at 96 mph or higher.
[Call To The Pen] Meet the new fastest man in baseball - Let’s start with the obvious qualifier, sprint speed. Locastro sits alone at the top of the leaderboard at a blistering 30.8 feet/second. His 4/10 of a second lead over every other hitter might seem minuscule, but then think about how many bang-bang plays require that extra few moments. Another area where Locastro demonstrates his speed can be found in his home to first time. He holds the second-fastest time at 3.94 seconds with Marlins OF Magneuris Sierra the top at 3.93. An important separator is the fact that Sierra is left-handed so he has less distance to travel. Castro has to take 2-3 extra steps and he is still within .01 of Sierra which is incredibly impressive. [Mentioned by ed in the comments yesterday, but worthy of a full entry!]
[dbacks.com] Notes: Ray's new delivery; Leake's sim game - Before Thursday, there had only been so much that the club could glean from Leake’s simulated bullpens. D-backs general manager Mike Hazen even tempered Leake’s expectations of being ready for the club’s first turn through the rotation in three weeks. But Leake maintained his self conviction after striking out five, including three looking, while showing bite with each of his six pitches. “They don't have to worry that I'm not going to be game ready,” Leake said. “I think the 10 years have prepared me to get game ready for the first day, mentally. Physically, I know it's a different story. But mentally, I think it's not something that I'll have to work on.”