D-Backs at crossroads

The Mariners and Royals have both raised the white flag. Now it's time for the D-Backs to consider their options.

Originally Published: June 28, 2004
By Rob Neyer | ESPN Insider
Looking at the list of team payrolls for this season, we find that, with one exception, all 12 teams spending more this season than the Arizona Diamondbacks are competing for division titles. The exception? The Seattle Mariners, who've got Arizona "beat" by about eight million bucks ($78.5 million Opening Day payroll for the Mariners, $70.2 million for the D-Backs).

Sunday, of course, the Mariners finally gave up on 2004.

After hearing about the Freddy Garcia trade, my first thought was "what took them so long?" My second was "so what are the Diamondbacks waiting for?" Because of course Arizona's in almost exactly the same boat as the Mariners: distant last place and moderately large payroll, much of it spent on aging veterans who will be collecting pension checks by the time their current teams are ready to compete for division titles again.