The Arizona Diamondbacks pushed for Japanese free agent Masahiro Tanaka from the start. They were ready to fly to Japan and make an offer as soon as the process started, which would seem to be an indication that they believe they need to add another starting pitcher to compete with the Los Angeles Dodgers next season.
We like our team the way it stands today. We’re looking to add pitching, but not just pitching. An elite pitcher, front-line, a number one or a very good number two, and Tanaka fit the bill. That’s why we were very aggressive after him.
“My job still is to try to improve the club any way I can. That doesn’t stop just because we didn’t get Tanaka.”
This would seem to indicate that the Diamondbacks will be first in line, along with the Seattle Mariners, Los Angeles Angels, and Toronto Blue Jays to sign Matt Garza. Lacking the upside of Tanaka, Garza still represents the only front-line starter who won’t cost his new team a compensatory draft pick.
The lengthy Tanaka sweepstakes are over, and now the teams who missed must move on. Of those teams, the Diamondbacks promise to be among the most active.