The Diamondbacks have not ruled out acquiring a new center fielder to replace injured star A.J. Pollock, reports Jon Morosi of MLB Network in a series of tweets (1, 2, 3, and 4). Pollock will have surgery on his fractured elbow and hopes to return at some point this season. However, it’s very possible he’ll miss the entire 2016 campaign.
The Diamondbacks made a serious of win-now oriented moves over the offseason. The loss of Pollock is a devastating blow to their hopes of contention. According to FanGraphs, he was worth over six wins above replacement level last year. Internal options like Chris Owings and Socrates Brito may patch the problem, but they won’t come close to replacing Pollock’s production.
For now, the club will evaluate their in-house candidates while exploring the trade market and free agent markets. It’s generally a difficult time of year to acquire impact talent – most teams have either made their blockbuster swaps or hope to contend this season. If Arizona does choose to look outside the organization, they could begin their search with veterans Michael Bourn and Will Venable. Bourn was recently designated for assignment by the Braves while Venable failed to make the Phillies Opening Day roster.