The Arizona Diamondbacks did not always have a great bullpen. The Diamondbacks’ bullpen posted a dreadful 5.74 ERA in 2010, and was one of the worst in baseball. GM Kevin Towers saw that the team needed to improve upon that area, and he set a goal in mind to acquire well-known pitchers that would turn the bullpen from a weakness into a strength for the team. The pitchers that he obtained were J.J Putz, Heath Bell, David Hernandez, and Brad Ziegler. This group of pitchers has led them to have one of the better bullpens in MLB.
The Diamondbacks orchestrated a trade with the Baltimore Orioles in 2010 to acquire a set up man for their closer. They traded their starting third baseman Mark Reynolds, and backup catcher John Hester for two relief pitchers. The relief pitchers that they acquired were Kameron Mickolio and David Hernandez.
When the trade was finalized, the Diamondbacks knew they were receiving a pitcher who could strike batters out, but there was an issue with his lack of command. In his first two seasons with the Orioles, Hernandez had a 4.93 ERA, and a 1.53 WHIP . The Diamondbacks knew that if they could get Hernandez to cut down his walks they would have something special. The first two seasons with the Diamondbacks he had a 2.94 ERA, and a 1.08 WHIP.
Hernandez has been the team’s best reliever since he arrived. He’s also shown not only can he be a great set-up man but he can close ball games as well. Hernandez will be the Diamondbacks best reliever this season.