Besides drawing and writing about Mets players, I’m going to be doing one drawing a day from a player from another MLB team — I’ll be going alphabetically by city, so today is Arizona. My choice was Goldschmidt, who saw his season shortened by a fractured hand that he sustained in August. While he didn’t reach the 36-homer, 125-RBI heights that he did in 2013, he was an All-Star yet again and he had 19 homers in nearly 250 fewer at-bats. One possible worryisome trend though – he struck out 110 times in that abbreviated year. Who knows if it was also because he was in a depleted lineup with very little protection or if it’s a trend to watch. If he’d had those extra at-bats, he could have had over 200 strikeouts… which is good for a pitcher but horrible for a batter.
If he can avoid the bad luck that befell him, he can get back to that 30-homer level and be the true superstar that Arizona needs to have in its lineup. Kirk Gibson is gone and Chip Hale is a first-time manager. The team now has a very strong front office pedigree, what with Tony La Russa as the Chief Baseball Officer and Dave Stewart as the General Manager and a pitching staff bolstered by the addition of Jeremy Hellickson, but a lot of things will have to go right for the team to think about a Worst-To-First turnaround.
Goldschmidt is going to have to hope that Cuban newcomer Yasmany Tomas will be yet another in a wave of excellent players to defect to the Majors and pitchers like Patrick Corbin regain their form. He also has to hope that catcher Tuffy Gosewich (seriously, is there a better name for a backstop than “Tuffy”?) seizes the starting role what with Miguel Montero going to the Chicago Cubs. Butof all the Arizona players for me to think about drawing first, Goldschmidt was the one to come to mind, since he’s essentially going to be the Face of The Diamondbacks, even with all these changes.
May he have a Hale and hearty season.