Diamondbacks: GM Towers likes roster, may try for LH reliever

2013-07-30T00:00:00Z Diamondbacks: GM Towers likes roster, may try for LH relieverThe Associated Press The Associated Press
July 30, 2013 12:00 am  • 

PHOENIX - Kevin Towers is usually busy this time of year, wheeling and dealing to add players for a playoff push or shedding salaries for future flexibility.

This season, the Arizona Diamondbacks general manager may be unusually quiet at the trade deadline.

With a roster he built and his team still in the thick of the NL West race, Towers could stand pat for one of the few times during his 16 years as a general manager.

"Makeup-wise, chemistry-wise, I feel very strongly about the guys we have in the clubhouse," Towers said. "This year, more strongly than in some of my prior years, and I am not sure how much I want to mess with that. In the long run, I feel that we will persevere and end up on top of this division."

He had a solid trading track record at San Diego, trading for Greg Vaughn, Kevin Brown, Mark Kotsay and Heath Bell. His most famous deal came in 2006, when he sent Adam Eaton and Akinori Otsuka to Texas for Adrian Gonzalez and Chris Young.

Towers has been no stranger to dealing for Arizona, either.

He traded Mark Reynolds to Baltimore in 2010 for reliever David Hernandez. In 2011, he sent second baseman Kelly Johnson to Toronto for second baseman Aaron Hill and infielder John McDonald. This past offseason, he sent star outfielder Justin Upton and third baseman Chris Johnson to Atlanta for All-Star infielder Martin Prado and pitching prospect Randall Delgado, who has pitched well since being called up from Triple-A.

Towers spent three years building Arizona's roster and likes the way it's put together, despite the inconsistency the D-backs have had this season.

"I like the chemistry of this ballclub," he said. "I don't think this is a ballclub that needs a wakeup call. We just need some of the guys to perform a little bit better than they did in the first half."

Should Towers go shopping at Wednesday's trade deadline, one hole he might try to fill is a left-handed reliever. Arizona's staff has only one lefty in the bullpen, Tony Sipp, but he's actually been better against right-handers (.203 batting against) than left-handers (.263).

The D-backs are expected to get right-hander Brandon McCarthy off the DL this week and right-hander Trevor Cahill is scheduled to make a rehab start at Triple-A Reno also this week, so they have some depth in the rotation to use as trade bait.

Arizona also could look to move outfielder Jason Kubel, who's struggled this season (.234 average, five homers), and has quality prospects such as third baseman Matt Davidson and shortstop Chris Owings who are stuck behind players already on the major league roster.

Arizona has been reluctant to include top pitching prospect Archie Bradley in any past deals and isn't likely to move him. Tyler Skaggs, a young left-hander who's pitched in the majors this season, also seems an unlikely piece to any trade. Still, if the right deal comes along, Towers won't hesitate to go for it.

"I have never had anyone who is untouchable," he said. "Certain guys are tougher to move than others, but you always have to have an open mind."

Today

• Who: D-backs at Rays

• When: 4:10 p.m.

• TV: FSAZ

• Radio: 1490-AM

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