The Arizona Diamondbacks 2013 expectations have all but flown out of the window now that the club shipped Justin Upton to the Atlanta Braves. Although he was an offensive menace the Diamondbacks pitching was key when the team won the NL West just two seasons ago.
Aside from the question of who will replace Upton, the team also has the inquiry of who the team’s ace will be all summer long. With Ian Kennedy being the go-to starter for the last two seasons I feel a changing in the guard in Arizona as Wade Miley is set to emerge even further in 2013. Miley deserved Rookie of the Year in 2012 with a 3.33 ERA and 16 wins in his first full MLB season at just 27-years-old.
Now, Miley will have some stark competition as both Trevor Cahill and Brandon McCarthy are established pitchers who have both given great innings in the MLB. Nonetheless, the Diamondbacks have no hopes of returning back to NL West grace without a great starting rotation–the staff in 2011 was the best since Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling were toeing the mound.
Kennedy will be asked to do what he did in 2011 as he won 21 games and had a 2.88 ERA while throwing in over 200 innings. He has done a wonderful job of staying healthy as he has not sniffed the disabled list since coming to the Diamondbacks in 2010.
The sophomore slump may be in the equation for Miley however, I believe the lefty will shouldering most of the Diamondbacks load come August and September as he is the real deal on the rubber.