The Diamondbacks season continues to wallow in chaos as manager Bob Melvin was been fired late Thursday after the team returned home form losing an extra innings game against the Padres. Thursday’s game was like so many other Diamondback games this season, featuring solid pitching, non existent offense, and a very mediocre opposing pitcher asserting dominance against hapless Diamondback hitters. Chris Young’s 86 mph fast ball proved too much and unfortunately Dan Haren gave up three whole runs, far too many for this team to overcome.
Bob Melvin was truly a victim of circumstance. He was given a team with no proven hitters and no front relievers and expected to compete with a team that has a payroll $26.5 million dollars higher. Never mind that the team’s Cy Young pitcher has been on the DL since his first start, or that one of the more consistent offensive players, Stephen Drew, has also been out for over half the season.
The trigger on Melvin was pulled too quickly, but team president Derrick Hall and GM Josh Byrnes had to make a move because this team was sliding fast. The only other option would be for them to admit that the players they have staked themselves to just don’t cut it, and that the “potential” they have talked about for the past three years isn’t there. Chris Young, Chris Snyder, Eric Byrnes, and Conor Jackson may not be enough to beat the Dodgers. They may not even be enough to beat the Padres or Rockies.
There are plenty of black marks on the front office’s record already over the past three years. Take for example Eric Byrnes, the highest paid player on the team by about three million dollars. Eric “pop fly” Byrnes needs some help hitting the ball. Perhaps he should seek hitting advice from Dan Haren, Doug Davis, and Max Scherzer, because they all have better batting averages than him. If GM Josh Byrnes had actually said out loud, 60% of my starting rotation has a better batting average than my highest paid player maybe Bob Melvin would still have a job.
The criticism on Melvin was that he was too soft, too much of a players coach. The team needed someone like third base coach Chip Hale, or Dodger’s third base coach Larry Bowa to come in as a hard nosed enforcer and motivate these players. The new manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks will now be A.J. Hinch. Who? Oh, you mean the vice president of player development with a professional coaching record of 0-0. Get ready, get set Dbacks fans, it’s going to be a long, hot summer.