With the D-backs 10 1/2 games behind the Dodgers in the National League West, is it time to raise the white flag and start looking toward next year? What about trading Miguel Montero, Joe Saunders and J.J. Putz?
Mike G., Phoenix
Mike, no doubt the deficit is large, but with just over a quarter of the games played, it is too early to declare the season lost. There's still a lot of baseball left to be played, but the D-backs definitely need to start winning more games or, to paraphrase Yogi Berra, it will get late very early.
So far, the Dodgers have looked a lot like the 2011 D-backs with the way they've pulled out games and gotten contributions from unexpected sources. There's still a long way to go, though, and keep in mind there are two Wild Card spots per league up for grabs this year, not just one.
When will we get to see Trevor Bauer in the Majors? What does he have left to prove in the Minors? Calling up Patrick Corbin before him made no sense. Bauer's a future star and could help this team turn things around. It's time.
Kelly S., Scottsdale, Ariz.
When the D-backs promoted Corbin to the big leagues rather than Bauer, they felt that Corbin was a little further along when it came to the game as a whole. Plus, Corbin had pitched very well during the spring and in his first starts in Double-A. When Bauer will get his shot depends a lot more on how the rotation shakes out here in the next month or so than it does on his individual performance. By that I mean if Daniel Hudson is unexpectedly unable to make his start on Sunday against the Brewers, or if there is another injury in the rotation, or if Wade Miley starts to struggle, that could open a door for Bauer.
It's certainly possible that if Bauer dominates at the Triple-A level, the team could look to trade Saunders to open up a rotation spot, but again, that depends on where the club is in the standings and how it views its rotation depth. I don't think there's any doubt that Bauer -- the No. 7 prospect in baseball entering the season, according to MLB.com -- will be up at some point, but when that will happen is anybody's guess right now.
How are the negotiations on a new contract for Miggy going?
Casey O., Phoenix
I think it surprised a lot of us when word broke that the D-backs were exploring the possibility of reopening negotiations with Montero during the season after saying in Spring Training that they would wait until the end of the season. Since that time, both sides have been tight-lipped, so we don't know if there has been an offer or if there have been any serious discussions.
I was not very optimistic about a deal getting done when the two sides decided to table negotiations this spring, but I think the fact that the D-backs talked about reopening them is a good sign. They certainly must have an idea of what it would take financially to get a deal done, and they may be willing to raise their offer from where it stood this spring.
It was reported this spring that the D-backs were looking at giving Montero an average of $8 million per year, while Montero was looking for $12 million annually. It's possible they'll meet somewhere in the middle or that the D-backs decide to approach the $12 million level. We'll just have to see how it plays out. One thing is for sure, though -- losing Montero would be a huge blow because the D-backs don't have a catcher near his caliber ready to step in, and acquiring a catcher who brings what Montero does to the table will not be cheap, either by trade or free agency.