The Arizona Diamondbacks Are Ready To Move Forward After Disappointing 2016

When any franchise makes big splashes in the offseason, especially big moves for their starting rotation, without any exceptions there are always extremely high expectations put on that team for the next season. The Arizona Diamondbacks made several of last offseason's biggest moves and finally garnered the national attention they have lacked for so many years, but they lost it by under-performing in the regular season. The D-Backs moved some huge pieces to get RHP Shelby Miller and second baseman Jean Segura, and spent big bucks to get starter Zack Greinke and reliever Tyler Clippard. Along with the core of underrated players that Arizona already had on their roster, the 2015-2016 offseason overhaul was almost guaranteed to give them a great season. Several months later, Arizona has again missed the playoffs, as they finished a horrendous 69-93. After all the optimism for Arizona heading into 2016, what went wrong? How do they fix it?

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The Offseason moves that didn't work out - Shelby Miller, Zack Greinkie, Tyler Clippard

While one year is obviously no gauge on if a contract or trade worked out, the first year of a deal is often the most important one. Unfortunately for Arizona, neither of their big starting pitching acquisitions looked good in year one, which now puts huge question marks on their 2017 season. Greinke dealt with some injury issues during his worst season since 2005, while Shelby Miller spent a chunk of the season in AAA. Reliever Tyler Clippard struggled with the Diamondbacks, and would in turn be traded to the New York Yankees at the end of July. 

Greinke - 13-7, 4.38 ERA, 26 starts, 158.2 IP, 134 SO, 1.27 WHIP

Miller - 3-12, 6.15 ERA, 20 starts, 101 IP, 70 SO, 1.67 WHIP

Clippard (Before trade) - 2-3, 4.30 ERA, 40 games, 37.2 IP, 46 SO, 1.30 WHIP

The Move That Paid Off - Jean Segura

At twenty-six years old, infielder Jean Segura could still be considered to be a guy who has not quite reached his prime. Segura is also coming off of his best season in baseball by far (Career highs in games played, runs scored, hits, doubles, homeruns, RBI, batting average, OBP, SLG), and will be one of the biggest keys for Arizona to rebound in 2017.

Segura - .319 AVG/ .368 OBP/ .499 SLG/ .867 OPS/ 203 H/ 102 RS/ 41 2B/ 20 HR/ 64 RBI/ 33 SB

Injuries that made a difference - RHP Rubby De La Rosa (Limited to 13 games), RHP Zack Greinke, OF A.J. Pollock (limited to 12 games), SS Nick Ahmed (Limited to 90 games), OF David Peralta (Limited to 48 games)

2016 Diamondbacks rankings

Homeruns - 190, 16th

Runs - 752, 10th

Stolen Bases - 137, 3rd

Batting Average - .261, 8th

OBP - .320, 17th

SLG - .423, 7th

OPS - .752, 11th

ERA - 5.09, 30th

WHIP - 1.49, 30th

Starter ERA - 5.19, 29th

Bullpen ERA - 4.94, 27th

Where can the difference be made in 2017? The numbers show that Arizona's offense was adequate, and with guys like Pollock and Peralta expected to be healthy for the full season they should be fine. It is more than obvious that Arizona's pitching was their downfall in 2016, which means that should be their offseason priority. Comebacks from Shelby Miller, who posted a 3.02 ERA two seasons ago, and Zack Greinke, who posted an ERA above 3.00 for the first time since 2012, would make a world of difference, but they will likely need to add pitching. Arizona does have some young pitching they have been waiting on to develop over the past few years, but they need to add some arms if they wish to contend in 2017. The fact remains that the roster they currently have has a very solid and underrated core, but they will need to get some help.