|Baseball, One Woman's Perspective #6: The Diamondbacks Rookies||| Print |||Send|
Written by April Addington (Contact & Archive) on August 02, 2003
The Arizona Diamondbacks have some new nicknames. The
Baby Backs and DiamondWinders are just some of the names that have been
given to the team this year due to the fact that their rookies have played
a large role in the season so far.
Catcher Robby Hammock showed his versatility, not only being behind the dish, but also as an outfielder and third baseman. He was recently sent back to Tucson when Rod Barajas was reactivated, however, in 33 games with the Diamondbacks this season, he was batting .274 with five home runs, 18 RBI and two stolen bases.
Matt Kata, who has been displaying his talents around the infield is also a recent call-up from the AAA Tucson Sidewinders. When Tony Womack was injured, Kata became the leadoff batter and currently has an average of .285 with 13 RBI, 21 Runs and 6 home runs, which isn’t too bad when you consider that he has only played in 31 games so far. Another newcomer to the team is Alex Cintron. Though he did spend a short time in the majors the past two years he is really making his mark with the Diamondbacks this year. He splits his time between shortstop and second base and has a batting average of .304.
In the bullpen, many pitchers have come and gone. Scott
Service was the first and now he has found work with the Toronto
Blue Jays. Eddie Oropesa, who pitched for the Diamondbacks
briefly last year has returned and has done fine, filling in the void
left by the departure and recent retirement of veteran left-handed specialist
Greg Swindell. As a matter of fact, he is averaging one
strikeout per inning pitched and has an ERA 2.79. The most successful
pitcher in the bullpen has been rookie sensation Jose Valverde,
called up when closer Matt Mantei went on the disabled
list. Valverde has recorded 9 saves and 1 win, averaging
two strikeouts per inning with an ERA of 1.61. All in all, each of these
men has made many contributions to this team.