What the Arizona Diamondbacks should do at the deadline

(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

The Arizona Diamondbacks are in a great position to make the postseason, sitting tied for the division lead with the Los Angeles Dodgers. In order to make a run in the postseason, Mike Hazen needs to make some moves.

This team is outperforming its expected wins with 71 games remaining, largely due to the offense overcoming games pitched by anyone not named Zac Gallen or Merrill Kelly (Zach Davies has looked like a solid number three in his last few starts).

There’s two ways to handle the rest of the season. Act like a first place team and make moves to bolster the roster OR stand pat and don’t do anything to mortgage the future of this youthful organization. Option one is the most likely. Top prospects Jordan Lawler and Druw Jones should be the only untouchable non-big leaguers barring a blockbuster deal.

There’s plenty of rumors swirling around, so here are some players the Diamondbacks could target ahead of the trade deadline on August 1. There are more players as well that’ll be discussed in the coming days.

Paul Goldschmidt or Nolan Arenado (Cardinals)

The problem is pitching on this team, but more offense couldn’t hurt. 3rd base hasn’t delivered much at the plate this season, so Arenado would make the most sense. He’s slashing .283/.518/.850 this season with 19 home runs and 62 RBI. Add Gold Glove level defense and the price becomes steep but could be the perfect move (especially if he’s packaged with a Cardinals pitcher). He’s also signed through the 2027 season, so he would be a leader for the young core in Arizona.

The 35-year-old Goldschmidt would feel like a nostalgia trade and with Christian Walker playing like one of the best first basemen in baseball, this moves makes less sense unless a platoon is in order at first and designated hitter. Goldy is under contract next season too. This move would certainly garner a few more sellouts. Either player would help the snakes make a run.

Jordan Montgomery (Cardinals)

The Cardinals are having a down year despite being loaded with talent, so yes we’re staying there for this deal. Montgomery owns a 3.23 ERA and would help the Diamondbacks eat up innings. The lefty would be a great pitcher to have behind Gallen and Kelly, or even sandwhiched between in a postseason series. He makes the most sense in a deal for Arenado or Goldschmidt. Maybe the Cardinals could throw in reliever Jordan Hicks, but the price would get steep. 

Marcus Stroman (Cubs)

What’s better than having one CY Young candidate on the roster? How about two. Stroman is having that type of season, boasting a 2.96 ERA with 98 strikeouts in 112.2 innings pitched. Hazen would likley have to tap deep into the farm, but he is under contract through 2024.

James Paxton (Red Sox)

Paxton has been inconsistent year to year, but he’s having a stellar season for Boston (last place in the AL East). He’s 5-1 with a 2.73 ERA in 56 innins pitched. Of all the pitchers listed so far, he’d likely be the easiest to acquire without gutting the farm or big league roster at all.

Scott Barlow (Royals)

The most popular bullpen arm in Kansas City who could be dealt is Aroldis Chapman. But, Barlow could be just what the Diamondbacks are looking for. 44 strikouts in 33 innings pitched with experience as a closer and a setup reliever. He’s under contract for next season too so he’s not a rental.

Daniel Bard (Rockies)

If you don’t know his story, you should. The soon-to-be 38-year-old who was out of the ;eague for years, is posting a phenomenal season after recording 34 saves and a 1.79 ERA in 2022. Bard, who is due $9.5 million in 2024, has a 0.96 ERA in his first 18 appearances this season. He could be the perfect closer fot this roster

Shohei Ohtani (Angels)

Okay, this is HIGHLY unlikely, but if the organization sees this year as a championship opportunity then why not acquire the best possible rental player maybe ever? He becomes your number two pitcher and the biggest bat in your lineup (32 home runs, .302 average this season). Even though he’s a free agent at the conclusion of the season, the Angels asking price is likely way too steep.

Would Hazen be willing to deal anyone outside of Corbin Carroll and Gallen? If so, this could happen, but I doubt that’s the attitude at this moment. Would Ohtani sign a contract extension? The answer is no, but winning a World Series in the valley could sway him to sign long-term. Okay, enough dreaming.


Arizona should absolutely make a few moves before the trade deadline. There’s opportunities for big splashes, but the best moves could be the smaller ones that sure up the bullpen and/or starting rotation. 

The best possible deal would be a trade for Arenado and Montgomery from the St. Louis Cardinals. The Diamondbacks could package Alek Thomas/Jake McCarthy/Josh Rojas (if the Cardinals like his potential) and some prospects to make it happen. That package isn’t likely to be enough, so would Hazen include Lawler or maybe even Druw Jones?