By David Miller @DavidMillerRant on March 27, 2014
There are few directions one can view the Arizona Diamondbacks' Opening Day lineup from that make look like anything other than a contender. The first couple of games didn't go their way but chances are good that more games will go their way than against them once the regular season begins. This starting lineup that will be run out on Opening Day is exactly why.
Last season the Dbacks wanted an outfield that wasn't all about big power. Rather they wanted guys that could get on base and make things happen. Two-thirds of their outfield looks like that with Pollock pulling down a solid job in center field. Look for possibly double digits in homers but mainly you'll look to him to get on base as score runs ahead of the big boys.
Whether big or small by other people's measure, Hill could easily emerge as one of the more offensively productive second basemen in the National League if not all of MLB with another good season in 2014. Considering he has the almost MVP batting behind him, he should see plenty of pitches to hit on the way to that goal.
Goldschmidt was close enough to winning the MVP in the National League last season that most people believe he should have won it. I'll say this; if he had won, the Pirates faithful wouldn't have had one reason to complain about their guy finishing second. Nobody really put up the numbers he did last season in the way of run production. He should do much of the same this season.
Even though he is not going to be one of the biggest home run hitters on this team, look for Prado to be a key figure in their winning season, assuming they have one. He is more comfortable this season and wouldn't have to take too many steps forward to place his name in the mix as the most valuable player on the club.
So, last season the management wanted outfielders that were not really big boppers. Well that didn't work well by itself so they went out and got themselves a home run hitting outfielder in Trumbo. By itself this move shoved the Diamondbacks into the realm of the Dodgers and probably above them in terms of potential wins before their pitching staff took a hit or two.
Montero might not blow the world away with his offensive numbers but there is little doubt about who the catcher is on this team. The job of the backstop is so unique and important that his middle of the road level of offensive production is more than enough. If he is placed here in the lineup behind Trumbo, he could potentially get a lot of RBI chances however with opposing pitchers pitching around the big man now and then.
The famed shortstop battle in Arizona really has been fun to watch but I think it is going to go to Owings pretty obviously. He has had a better spring training offensively and did better in his game in Australia. Look for a pretty solid rookie season from him.
Parra is good with the bat when he needs to be but his main claim to fame isn't driving in runs but rather keeping them from crossing the plate for opposing teams when he is in the outfield. If he isn't the best defensive outfielder in the National League, he is second. Offensively he is plenty good enough.
It hurt this team when Patrick Corbin went down to elbow surgery. There can be no doubt about that. The chance handed to Miley not just with the Opening Day start but to step up over the balance of the season cannot be ignored. He could potential rise to a high enough level to be considered the ace of the staff this season.
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