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Snake Pit Sim Season Off-day Recap - Somebody Call a Doctor

This recap coming to you in the late hours to allow plenty of time to discuss trades happening with the real-world team.

Team Record: 69-68, 2nd Place NL West, 1st Place Wild Card

When last we checked in with the simulated 2020 Diamondbacks, they were preparing themselves for an important three-game series against the division-leading Dodgers. On August 16th, the Diamondbacks finished taking two of three from the Dodgers and were a half-game out of first place in the NL West. Since then, the Diamondbacks have gone 4-9. They went from half a game out of the the NL West lead to six games out of first, two ahead of the third place Padres. They have seen their 9.5 game lead in the wild card standings shrink to 4.5 games.

It has truly been a trying time. Why the tailspin?

Looking at just the pitchers; Braxton Garrett, Corbin Martin, Jon Duplantier, Andrew Chafin, Will Smith, Robbie Ray, and Yoan Lopez have all been injured. Only Ray managed to avoid a stint on the IL. In addition to that, fatigue has settled in. Even with a liberal rotation in the outfield, keeping the players fresh has proven difficult. Michael A. Taylor is seeing far more playing time than he was ever supposed to, playing four out of five days. This is tiring him out, as he attempts to give the actual starters time off. Things aren’t looking much better on the infield. Ketel Marte and Nick Ahmed are both piling on the innings, looking for any way they can to take a breather. However, the best option for covering short is Ketel Marte. The best option for covering second is Andy Young. Ildemaro Vargas has, apparently, forgotten how to hit and how to play defense. He isn’t helping anyone at this point.

That brings me to the offense. Last time we checked in with the simulation, the Diamondbacks were rocking an average or better OPS+ up and down every slot in the entire lineup. That is no longer the case. Brandon Marsh has forgotten how to hit lead-off. Josh Rojas’ standing as the front-runner for ROY now looks dicey. Yairo Munoz has come back down, bringing with him the doom that is Arizona’s third base bat. Andy Young has tried to step in and has had some luck. However, Young is not a great defender at third. Munoz is above average there. Young’s bat has not been sufficiently better to make it worth swapping them out. Of course, Young has to get healthy again. Oh yeah, he’s currently out for another three days as well. Ryan Mountcastle straightened himself out in Reno. Then he promptly tore a muscle and is now expected to be out until August of 2021. So, yeah, there goes having a second look at his thunderous bat. Carson Kelly has come back to Earth. Since starting the All-Star Game, he has been decidedly average. Daulton Varsho has not been a solid back-up for Kelly. This has not helped things at all.

The next 13 day stretch will be huge for Arizona. That’s how long until our next off-day update. In that time, they will need to get healthy and they will need the bats to wake up again. The team isn’t going anywhere if Nick Ahmed, Ketel Marte, and David Peralta are the only ones carrying the offense.

Will the Diamondbacks avoid a September Swoon and make the playoffs? Or, will the Diamondbacks start looking like the real-world Miami Marlins, reaching down into AA just to field a team? Find out in two weeks!