The Diamondbacks had a rather busy offseason as compared to most other teams in the league. They signed a ton of minor league deals and a few major league free agents. The team also made a trade to help fill a massive hole in the roster; a hole left by JD Martinez.
Martinez was acquired by the Diamondbacks at the trade deadline from the Tigers in the 2017 season. He joined the team and instantly made an impact hitting .302 with 29 home runs in the second half of the season alone. He was a monster against the Dodgers and piloted the team’s run to the playoffs for the first time in five seasons.
The power-hitting outfielder signed a five year deal with the Boston Red Sox earlier this week and left Shaquille O’Neal size shoes to fill.
Other losses this offseason include: infielder Brandon Drury, pitcher Anthony Banda, and in rather positive fashion, Fernando Rodney.
The JD Martinez loss was a big one but the D-backs front office was sure to make a few moves to soften the blow. Fist, the signed speedy outfielder and incredible defender, Jarrod Dyson, to a two-year contract. Dyson will bring league average hitting to the team but more importantly will bring his defensive prowess to the roster.
Second, the Diamondbacks participated in a three-team-trade that ultimately landed them Steven Souza. Souza was an under-the-radar stud in 2017. On the season he hit .239 but batting average is irrelevant when you can hit 30 home runs and he did just that. Souza had an OPS of 4.2 and an OPS+ of 121. The 28-year-old outfielder is a solid band-aid solution for JD Martinez’s departure.
On the pitching side, the Diamondbacks added righty Bradley Boxberger by trade and Japanese superstar reliever Yoshihisa Hirano. The two will join one of baseball’s best bullpens and make it even better.
Less notably, the team added Neftali Feliz, Antonio Bastardo, and Fernando Salas to minor league contracts. They also added a decent catcher in Alex Avila, to a major league deal that most people thought was too expensive.