TMS MLB Preview 2009: Arizona Diamondbacks

All through March, Thunder Matt's Saloon will be previewing each Major League team. We'll give you the ins and outs of the upcoming 2009 season, how each team will do, and some other useless crap you'll wish you had never read.

ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

2008 SEASON: 82-80 (2nd in NL West)

SO LONG: Randy Johnson, Orlando Hudson, Adam Dunn, Brandon Lyon, Juan Cruz, David Eckstein

WELCOME: Felipe Lopez, Jon Garland, Scott Schoeneweis, Tom Gordon

PROJECTED LINEUP:
1. Felipe Lopez 2B
2. Chris Young CF
3. Stephen Drew SS
4. Conor Jackson LF
5. Justin Upton RF
6. Chad Tracy 1B
7. Mark Reynolds 3B
8. Chris Snyder C

Starting Rotation: Brandon Webb, Dan Haren, Doug Davis, Jon Garland, Max Scherzer
Setup: Tom Gordon, Scott Schoeneweis
Closer: Chad Qualls

For reasons I can't remember, I picked the 2008 Diamondbacks to win it all. That didn't quite pan out. The 2009 Diamondbacks are the baseball equivalent of Two-Face with what is likely the best starting rotation in the league and the worst lineup. I look at that lineup and can't imagine how they are going to score runs. They struggled putting runs on the board last year with Adam Dunn and Orlando Hudson, and they've downgraded offensively at both positions. The pitching staff is amazing, but this team is going to lose a lot of 1-0 and 2-1 games.

So what's the silver lining in the Valley of the Sun? Well, they have a three team crap-cushion below them in the division, so 2nd place should be a gimme. Also, for the first time ever, Arizona fans can look forward to the NFL season.

PRESEASON AWARDS:
Mr. Sexy Time - Mark Reynolds - On a team that featured five guys with 100 or more strikeouts (six if you include Adam Dunn's pre-trade strikeouts in Cincy), Reynolds took it to another level with a major league record 204 Ks. Chicks dig the longball and trannies dig the strikeout.

Most Unfortunate Name Award - TIE: Billy Buckner, Jon Coatlangus - I suppose unfortunate is a matter of opinion here. I'm sure they get ripped on all the time for having these names, but then again, would two obscure middle relievers be worth mentioning if they didn't?

Most Likely to Steal One of the Arizona Quints - H. I. McDunnough - The Arizona Quints were the biggest news to hit the state since they built the Hoover Dam. H.I. and his new wife Ed, short for Edwina, are having trouble conceiving so the smart money is on this wily ex-con to kidnap one of the babies. After all, they have more than they can handle.

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