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News » Arizona Diamondbacks Roster Report 2008-12-12


Arizona Diamondbacks Roster Report 2008-12-12


Arizona Diamondbacks Roster Report 2008-12-12
The Diamondbacks will continue building around their starting pitching and a young nucleus of position players. Most of their key players are either under contract or under control, so there may not be much offseason movement.

BIGGEST NEEDS: The D-backs answered their biggest need by agreeing to a one-year contact with 2B Felipe Lopez at the winter meetings, although Lopez must pass a physical to make it official. He will replace two-time Gold Glover winner Orlando Hudson, who is on the free agent market. They still are looking for a left-handed bullpen arm and could move on an arm to replace free agent LHP Randy Johnson.

ARRIVAL: C James Skelton (Rule 5 selection from Tigers).

FREE AGENTS: 1B Tony Clark, 1B/OF Adam Dunn, 2B/SS David Eckstein, RHP Juan Cruz, 2B Orlando Hudson, LHP Randy Johnson, RHP Brandon Lyon.

The D-backs did not offer salary arbitration to Dunn and Johnson, Type A free agents, because they feared each would accept, blowing their 2009 budget, which stands at about $70 million-$72 million. They offered arbitration to Hudson (Type A), Cruz (Type A) and Lyon (Type B), meaning they could get as many as five draft picks as compensation if all three sign elsewhere.

ARBITRATION-ELIGIBLE: INF Chris Burke, C Robby Hammock, OF/1B Conor Jackson, LHP Wil Ledezma, RHP Chad Qualls, C Chris Snyder.

Jackson, Qualls and Snyder will be retained, and if the D-backs follow their usual path, they will stop short of an arbitration hearing. The D-Backs are not likely to offer contracts to the others.

IN LIMBO: OF Eric Byrnes is due $22 million over the next two seasons and has a complete no-trade clause, but the emergence of 1B/OF Conor Jackson as a capable left fielder in the second half of 2008 makes Byrnes expendable, if the D-backs can find a taker and if Byrnes is willing to move. 1B Chad Tracy ($4.75 million salary in 2009) could be a trading chip, although he hit well at the end of the season and is one of their few left-handed bats. C Miguel Montero, another left-handed hitter, is well-regarded in baseball circles but is stuck behind Chris Snyder. The D-backs do not want to deal him, and they found a depressed market at the winter meetings, making a trade unlikely.

MEDICAL WATCH:

OF Eric Byrnes (torn right hamstring) has been working out at Chase Field after being cleared to run. He opted against surgery to repair a small tear and expects to be full strength by spring training.

RHP Edgar Gonzalez (sore right elbow) missed the final three months of the season while opting to rehabilitate a strained ligament. He was to first test his elbow in winter ball.


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 12, 2008

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