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Assessing Arizona: Kendrick tries to guard against over-reacting

NEW YORK -- Diamondbacks managing partner Ken Kendrick, as stunned as other Arizona officials by the team's poor start, admitted they are "looking at the situation" but offered general praise for general manager Kevin Towers and manager Kirk Gibson for they have handled things.

Kendrick also suggested they are trying not to over-react to a six-week dry spell.

"We obviously are looking at the situation. They've got a history of success. You have to put a bad period in context," Kendrick said when asked about Towers and Gibson outside the MLB owners' meetings here. "That's what we're trying to do."

Kendrick declined to confirm some speculation that the extension given to Gibson a couple weeks before spring training was fairly short-term, perhaps only an extra year, through 2015. Towers also received an extension of undisclosed length at the same time.

Meantime, Kendrick and club president Derrick Hall pointed out that the team had won three straight series (this was before they lost to the Nationals later Wednesday) and other small positives in the club's surprising 16-27 start that now includes a stunning 4-17 home record.

One of the positives was the way Gibson and Towers have reacted to the downturn. "To their credit, they both have hung in there," Kendrick said. "There's no give-up in either guy."

Kendrick sees a few positive signs, too, in the team. "They're starting to play a little better," he said. "Now, we're playing a little more like we had hoped. We have had -- and this isn't unique to us -- a lot of injuries. When you dig a really big hole, it's tough. The old adage is that you can't win a pennant in April but you can lose one."

While the Diamondbacks bosses surely believe they are better than they've played, they didn't do much sugarcoating. Said Hall, "We have some work to do."

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