Editor's Note: The following post is a part of the 2013 Purple Row Writer Search -- our quest to find some great new contributors to Purple Row.
Earlier this week, Grant Brisbee published this piece about how exceptionally depressing the Rockies offseason has been. It is all very true, but it's also very inevitable. The story of the Rockies offseason is one where they must quietly recover from the shell-shock of the 2012 season. This is a team that is adjusting their bearings, seeking a stronger baseball voice in their organization, and adjusting to a sweep of managerial changes. This is a team that has coming of a season wracked with injuries and under-performing players. It is a team that is necessarily keeping itself out of contention in order to prevent injury, mitigate the effects that injuries do have on the team, and develop young players.
The narrative of the offseason is very different elsewhere in the NL West. This time of year is interesting to me. We will see a few deals signed between players and teams to avoid arbitration hearings, which are just over a week away. ZiPS projections are available for the Rockies, Diamondbacks, and Giants, with the Dodger and Padres still to come. Over the next couple of weeks, we can get a pretty clear picture of what to look for in 2013 in the NL West.
The Diamondbacks have dominated MLB headlines this week by dealing Justin Upton to the Braves. I do not believe that this is a horrible trade for Arizona. The Diamondbacks are getting a quality, versatile player coming off of a career year, and filling a hole at third base. Details of the trade have emerged which suggest that it the separation was mutual, as Justin was willing to be traded and Arizona did not see his playing style as fitting with the direction of the organization. Whether this was a good trade for Arizona, however, will depend on if they are able to sign a multi-year deal with Prado (who is in his last year before reaching free agency).
The other team dominating headlines are the Dodgers, who snagged a TV deal that could fetch them 7-8 billion dollars for a couple of decades, starting in 2014. This is good news for a team with a very ridiculous amount of money committed to their payroll for a very long time. The Dodgers ownership has not been particularly surreptitious about their intent to unseat the Giants or to buy the hearts of their fans.
The Giants have asserted that they are confident in the position as reigning world series champions. They have managed to quietly make small adjustments and hold on to the core of their roster. Currently, they have signed all of their arb-eligible players except closer Sergio Romo. Buster Posey inked a one year deal worth 8 million in his first year of arbitration.
The Padres, like the Rockies, have had a quiet offseason. The Padres, like the Rockies, are very likely out of contention. The Padres, like the rockies, are working within a small payroll. The Padres seem pretty content with keeping an eye on their solid farm system.