The Arizona Diamondbacks – and the rest of MLB – are only a couple of months out from opening day. The Diamondbacks start 2023 on the road with a pair of series against the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres before their home opener on Thursday, April 5. That game is again against the Dodgers, the team that the D’backs will play eight of their first ten games of 2023 against, with each club hosting a four-game series.
The Diamondbacks then step out of the division to face the Milwaukee Brewers before a homestand against the Padres and then the Kansas City Royals that begins on Thursday, April 26. For a full list of the Diamondbacks’ home schedule before the All-Star Break, check out the ticket links at the end of this post.
Here are three questions for the Diamondbacks as we approach the 2023 season.
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Three Key Questions
How Much Have They Improved?
The Diamondbacks finished with 74 wins in 2022. This is a far from impressive total that still meant they were well under .500 on the year, but it was a major improvement over their forgettable effort in 2021. Arizona improved by 22 games last season, going from the joint-worst record in the league in 2021 to a more respectable total. The major issue is that Arizona plays in a good division. The Dodgers’ 111 wins were the highest total in the league, the Padres were a wildcard with 89 wins, and even the San Francisco Giants finished at exactly .500. For the Diamondbacks to improve, they will have to take wins off of quality clubs.
Will The Farm System Continue to Produce?
The Diamondbacks may have been bad as of late, but the future is bright. Their farm system is widely praised by experts, with Kiley McDaniel of ESPN ranking it as the No. 2 system in baseball and Keith Law of The Athletic seeing them as the No. 4 player pool. Corbin Carroll came through last year and had a WAR of 1.2 in 32 games, while right-hander Ryne Nelson pitched 18.1 innings and gave up only three runs. Watch for that pair to make waves in the NL West this season, with other prospects like pitchers Brandon Pfaadt and Blake Walston also ready to step up to the big show.
What Can They Get Out Of Kyle Lewis?
Keep an eye on this one. The Diamondbacks basically traded a backup catcher for a former Rookie of the Year. Lewis won that award in 2020 as a Seattle Mariner before injuries caused him to lose all ability to hit in 2022. Lewis picked up again in the minors last season, where he slugged 15 home runs in just 46 games. He is a defensive liability – that is what the DH spot is for – and if Arizona can get anything like the best out of Lewis, then he is a bat with all kinds of pop that will transform their power output at the plate.