KEY ADDITIONS: Asdrubal Cabrera, Chris Devenski, Joakim Soria, Caleb Smith
KEY SUBTRACTIONS: Jon Jay, Mike Leake, Hector Rondon, Robbie Ray, Starling Marte, Jake Lamb
2020 was supposed to be a really good year for the Diamondbacks. They signed a supposedly-rejuvenated Madison Bumgarner and had some other good young pitchers, including Zac Gallen.
What went wrong? Everything, pretty much, save Gallen, who had a fine year. Bumgarner got hurt, again, and was terrible when he did pitch, and so was the rest of the Arizona rotation. Bumgarner, Robbie Ray and Luke Weaver all had ERA’s over six, Archie Bradley saved just six games before being traded, and the offense was middle-of-the pack.
The D-backs are counting on rebounds from Bumgarner and others for their rotation. Caleb Smith, picked up in the deal that sent Starling Marte to the Marlins, should help.
They are hoping Stefan Crichton will close, but signed experienced closer Joakim Soria just in case.
Offensively, they will have one less Marte on their team — Ketel is the remaining one — but otherwise return essentially the same bunch that finished second-to-last in the National League in home runs in 2020 with just 58. With the deadened ball in 2021 perhaps leading to a league-wide drop in power, the D-backs will have to generate runs in another way anyway.
Put another way: No one except the Padres or Dodgers is going to win this division, so the D-backs are likely competing with the Giants for third place.
The Cubs and Diamondbacks are scheduled to play six times in 2021, all within a 10-day period:
July 16-17-18 at Chase Field
July 23-24-25 at Wrigley Field