Here's a shocker for you.
Russ Ortiz cleared waivers.
No way. The Diamondbacks also released veteran lefty Terry Mulholland,
if for no other reason than they need an arm, and Mulholland, who battled injury
and then an inner ear infection, wasn't giving them one. With the success
Randy Choate has had since being recalled, he became the lefty in the bullpen
for Bob Melvin, and Mulholland became expendable.
The Diamondbacks have yet to make the big move they have been rumored to be
seeking, but the losing ways of the D'Backs, a run that has seen them drop from
first to last in the NL West in less than two weeks, might be making the 'buyer'
vs. 'seller' decision a little more difficult for the front office.
Not that they have fallen out of the race. The NL West is separated by
all of three games from first to last, and a pair of wins, coupled with some
losses, could put them right back in first before the end of the weekend.
The troubling thing now is that the D'Backs rotation is getting awfully
Miguel Batista is 35 years old, and right now he's their de facto #2.
Claudio Vargas just turned 28, Brandon Webb is 27, and the rest of the
rotation, as it stands now, is even younger, with the Edgar Gonzalez and Enrique Gonzalez (no relation) just 23 and 24 respectively. The fourth and fifth
spots, the ones currently held by the Gonzalezes, could be a rotating one, with
Dustin Nippert making a start here or there, and perhaps Micah Owings, who has
been impressive at every level he's pitched, including two starts in Triple A in
which he's allowed one earned run in 13 innings, getting a call soon.
But if the Diamondbacks really want to challenge for the NL West title,
somebody is going to have to step up. Both Edgar and Enrique have pitched
well, even if Edgar did take the loss today, but outside of Webb this team does
not have a pitcher that intimidates opponents, and pretty soon they are going to
The Diamondbacks need to take a chance, and take it soon. The two
options are going out and making a trade, or calling up Owings now.
Something dramatic has to happen, and either move could spark this club, and
above all else that is what this club needs.