Gomez: Tempered Talent, Expectations Greet 2019 D-backs

You may need to take a second, possibly third look at the scorecard this season when you make your way to Chase Field. The Arizona Diamondbacks have more than a few fresh faces as they open the 2019 season.

If Thursday was any indication, it could be a tough year for the Local Nine. 

“It’s going to be very difficult,” ESPN MLB Insider Pedro Gomez told Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat when asked if the D-backs could surprise in the National League West this season. “Look, you lose [A.J.] Pollack, you lose [Paul] Goldschmidt, you lose [Patrick] Corbin. Now you lose [Steven] Sousa.”

Get the idea?

“There’s a lot of negative check marks,” Gomez continued. “It’s really hard to play this game over 162 games. It’s probably going to be a very difficult year.”

History says some of the past teams with low expectations proved the so-called experts wrong but the NL West is as tough as ever with the Dodgers, Rockies and new-look Padres all projected to finish ahead of Arizona when the dust settles.

Would a poor season signal the end of General Manager Mike Hazen’s tenure in the desert?

“I think Hazen probably is safe, should be safe,” Gomez said. “If somehow there is a change there, that’s really going to signal some more deeper issues.”

Arizona opens their 2019 home schedule Friday, April 5th against the World Series Champion Boston Red Sox.

A Valley native, Eric has had a passion for the Arizona sports scene since an early age. He has covered some of the biggest events including Super Bowls, national championships and the NBA and MLB playoffs in his near 20 years in local media.