Putz pumped to begin next chapter with D-backs

Longtime closer offers insight into front-office job, holiday traditions and 2015 plans

Putz pumped to begin next chapter with D-backs

PHOENIX -- In a lot of ways, Christmas came early this year for J.J. Putz, who was finally able to officially join the D-backs' front office as special assistant to president/CEO Derrick Hall.

"He's like a caged animal, because he's texted me every night, 'Can I come to work tomorrow?'" Hall said in November when the move was announced. "No, not yet. We don't have the contract signed."

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Stewart's journey to GM has been years in the making

In the realm of baseball, there's not much the former pitcher hasn't done

Stewart's journey to GM has been years in the making

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Early during a long-ago Spring Training, a young pitcher named Dave Stewart scaled the Vero Beach mound on shaky legs to pitch batting practice against the marquee Dodgers.

Stewart had been preceded by his reputation for not knowing where his hard pitches were going. In his first two seasons in the Minors, he'd walked 123 in 109 innings. He quickly lived up to it.

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Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs reportedly re-sign Pacheco

Infielder takes Minor League deal, spring invite

D-backs reportedly re-sign Pacheco

The D-backs have re-signed Jordan Pacheco to a Minor League contract and invited him to Spring Training, SBNation.com reported late Wednesday night. The club has not confirmed the deal.

Pacheco, who will turn 29 on Jan. 30, had been outrighted off the D-backs' roster last month and became a free agent. He originally came to Arizona in June, when he was claimed off waivers from the Rockies.

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Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs sign Hernandez to one-year contract

D-backs sign Hernandez to one-year contract

PHOENIX -- The D-backs avoided arbitration with reliever David Hernandez on Wednesday by signing the right-hander to a one-year, $2 million contract.

Hernandez missed all of last season after sustaining a torn ulnar collateral ligament towards the end of Spring Training.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs spread cheer at Boys & Girls Club

Club donates $100K for south Phoenix facility to add new gymnasium

D-backs spread cheer at Boys & Girls Club

PHOENIX -- The D-backs played Santa for a few hundred kids on Monday night with their fifth annual Holiday Party at the MLB All-Star Arizona Diamondbacks Boys & Girls Club, located south of downtown Phoenix, just five miles from Chase Field. However, the big surprise was an early holiday gift of $100,000 from the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation for the facility to provide a new gym for the kids to enjoy for years to come.

Kids at the D-backs Boys & Girls Club were treated to a toy, pictures with Santa, dinner provided by Raising Canes, games and a craft station. D-backs employees assisted kids with the holiday decorations and each kid was able to select a toy from a secret toy room filled with everything from a skateboard to a doll from the movie Frozen.

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Katie Krause is a contributor to Dbacks.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs land power arms from Boston for Miley

De La Rosa, Webster bring heat to rotation mix; deal includes infielder Flores

D-backs land power arms from Boston for Miley

PHOENIX -- The much-talked-about trade to send Wade Miley to the Red Sox was finally completed Friday night, with the D-backs receiving right-handers Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster along with Minor League infielder Raymel Flores.

The trade was reported to be completed Wednesday, but D-backs GM Dave Stewart said at that time the two teams were "squabbling" over the third player set to come Arizona's way.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hall hosts Facebook chat with fans

D-backs president & CEO Derrick Hall interacted with fans on Dec. 11 during a chat on Facebook. Hall discussed the club's latest moves at the Winter Meetings and outlook for the 2015 season.

Derrick: Welcome everyone. Just landed from San Diego and headed over to Chase for this chat. Thanks for being here. I will try to answer as many questions as I can over the next 30 minutes.

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D-backs opt for young catcher Hernandez in Rule 5 Draft

Backstop, who has yet to play above Class A, has to stick on Arizona roster or return to Rays

D-backs opt for young catcher Hernandez in Rule 5 Draft

SAN DIEGO -- On the lookout for catching help, the D-backs selected Oscar Hernandez from the Rays' organization with the first pick in Thursday's Rule 5 Draft.

After trading Miguel Montero, the D-backs left themselves with only one catcher -- Tuffy Gosewisch -- on the 40-man roster. They now have two.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Collmenter assists in shopping spree to help teens in need

Righty joins D-backs employees to spread joy to members of Homeward Bound program

Collmenter assists in shopping spree to help teens in need

D-backs pitcher Josh Collmenter has found a new career -- personal shopper. Collmenter joined D-backs employees on Tuesday in treating 20 teenagers from Homeward Bound to a shopping spree at Target, helping pick out holiday gifts for family and friends. At one point, he even stepped in and took over as a checkout clerk, scanning and bagging all the items the kids purchased.

"Seeing these kids put others before themselves really embraces the holiday spirit," said Collmenter. "It's a great opportunity for the D-backs to give back, and seeing our employees volunteer and not just take them shopping but get to know each kid on a personal level is truly rewarding."

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Katie Krause is the manager of corporate communications for the Arizona Diamondbacks. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Busy Meetings end, but D-backs to remain active

Busy Meetings end, but D-backs to remain active

SAN DIEGO -- The D-backs left the Winter Meetings feeling good about what they have accomplished so far this offseason, but also with the knowledge that more work needs to be done.

"I think that we've done a pretty good job overall in what we've tried to accomplish," D-backs general manager Dave Stewart said. "But you guys know the end result will be once we see what happens once we start play. We've set ourselves up for the future as well. 2015 is coming, but in the future, 2016 and 2017 moving forward, we've got control of the guys that we've drafted and we've got control of the guys that we've traded for. I think we've added in the areas that we needed to, which is starting pitching depth."

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs get 2 pitching prospects for Montero

Arizona acquires righties Mejia, Godley, sends veteran catcher to Cubs

D-backs get 2 pitching prospects for Montero

SAN DIEGO -- The D-backs acquired a pair of Minor League right-handed pitchers, Jeferson Mejia and Zack Godley, from the Cubs on Tuesday in exchange for catcher Miguel Montero.

Montero batted .243 in 136 games this past season, hitting 13 home runs and driving in 72 runs. The 31-year-old is owed $40 million over the next three years, and by moving him, it could provide the team with flexibility to add either another starting pitcher or another bat for the lineup.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Drury, O'Brien named to AFL's Top Prospects Team

Most Valuable Player Greg Bird leads young stars following AFL season

Drury, O'Brien named to AFL's Top Prospects Team

The Arizona Fall League on Wednesday announced its 2014 Top Prospects Team, highlighted by league Most Valuable Player Greg Bird and baseball's top prospect Byron Buxton.

The 22-man Top Prospects Team includes at least one player from 16 Major League organizations. The Fall League managers and coaches voted on the team, taking into consideration the players' performances during the fall and their projected future in the Major Leagues.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tomas, D-backs finalize 6-year contract

Cuban outfielder can opt out of $68.5M deal after four years, will have chance to play third

Tomas, D-backs finalize 6-year contract

SAN DIEGO -- Yasmany Tomas is officially a member of the D-backs.

The 24-year-old slugger, who signed his six-year, $68.5 million deal with Arizona on Sunday, celebrated the monumental day like most young men his age: He fired up his X-Box video gaming system and played FIFA 15 for a few hours. Tomas then put down the controller and resumed his training in the Dominican Republic.

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Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hale likes depth of outfield heading into first season

New manager talks about roster at Winter Meetings

Hale likes depth of outfield heading into first season

SAN DIEGO -- D-backs manager Chip Hale met with the media Monday at Major League Baseball's annual Winter Meetings.

Here's a look at what the rookie skipper had to say on a variety of subjects:

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

Tomas' talent potential rings true for D-backs

La Russa says Cuban slugger brings 'special thump' but could need time in Minors

Tomas' talent potential rings true for D-backs

SAN DIEGO -- There's something about the way the ball jumps off the bats of the best hitters. Always has been, always will be.

They swing easy and the ball screams toward the outfield. Whether it was Julio Franco or Magglio Ordonez, Roberto Alomar or a young Ken Griffey Jr., you could close your eyes and know they were the best hitters on the field.

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Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

La Russa: Ownership did not stop Montero deal

La Russa: Ownership did not stop Montero deal

SAN DIEGO -- D-backs chief baseball officer Tony La Russa said that Arizona ownership never stepped in to stop a deal that would have sent catcher Miguel Montero to the Dodgers in exchange for Andre Ethier.

FOXSports.com reported over the weekend that the proposed deal "collapsed when the D-Backs' ownership declined to give final approval."

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs trade Didi to get power lefty Ray

Arizona also acquires infield prospect Leyba in three-team swap

D-backs trade Didi to get power lefty Ray

PHOENIX -- The D-backs continued their quest to build pitching depth as they acquired left-hander Robbie Ray and Minor League infielder Domingo Leyba from the Tigers for shortstop Didi Gregorius.

The Tigers in turn flipped Gregorius to the Yankees for right-hander Shane Greene.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs brighten kids' day at Winter Classic

Underprivileged youth visit Chase Field for fun with players, gifts from team

D-backs brighten kids' day at Winter Classic

PHOENIX -- It was billed as the D-backs "Winter Classic" but it hardly felt like winter Friday afternoon at Chase Field.

With temperatures in the 70s and 600 underprivileged kids filling the field playing Wiffle ball, running the bases, creating holiday crafts and meeting some of their hometown heroes, it sure felt like baseball season.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yanks, D-backs, Tigers have rich history as trade partners

Yanks, D-backs, Tigers have rich history as trade partners

The Yankees went back to a familiar source on Friday to find Derek Jeter's replacement, acquiring shortstop Didi Gregorius from the D-backs as part of a three-team swap between the Yanks, D-backs and Tigers.

These are the same three teams that -- nearly five years ago to the day -- pulled off a blockbuster that sent Curtis Granderson to New York, Max Scherzer, Austin Jackson, Daniel Schlereth and Phil Coke to Detroit and Ian Kennedy and Edwin Jackson to Arizona.

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Paul Casella is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Arroyo, D-backs present School Challenge grants

Club helps provide $5,000 to 30 mentorship, technology programs across state

Arroyo, D-backs present School Challenge grants

"Be You" was the message D-backs pitcher Bronson Arroyo sang to the students of the Unified Sound band program at Tempe High School after surprising them with a $5,000 D-backs and University of Phoenix School Challenge grant. The grant will fund the program, which brings together high school special needs students and mentors from the Tempe High School band to form a unique bond through music.

Arroyo brought along his guitar and sang his "Be You" song that he wrote a few years ago, prior to visiting an elementary school. He explained that he has always found it easier to write songs geared toward young people, because they require the writer to be more direct and relatable.

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Katie Krause is the manager of corporate communications for the Arizona Diamondbacks. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs name Ladnier as new scouting director

The D-backs have a new scouting director in Deric Ladnier, the club announced Friday.

Ladnier, 50, will enter his 25th season in scouting and player development and comes over from the Nationals organization, where he had worked since 2008. Ladnier was scouting director for the Royals for eight years from 2000-08 and was with the Braves from 1991-2000.

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Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jalaymance. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

Duke's Matuella, 2014 top pick Aiken follow Florida high school infielder on Top 50 list

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

For the second time in their history, the Arizona Diamondbacks own the top pick in the First-Year Player Draft. The first time that happened, in 2005, they took a high school shortstop with a potent bat.

Ten years after grabbing Justin Upton, the D-backs could follow a similar path. Lake Mary (Fla.) High School shortstop Brendan Rodgers sits atop MLBPipeline.com's initial Draft Top 50 rankings, thanks to his three plus tools (bat, power, arm) complemented by two solid ones (speed, defense). Unlike Upton, who immediately moved to the outfield as a professional, Rodgers should remain at shortstop.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs tender contracts to all six arb-eligible players

D-backs tender contracts to all six arb-eligible players

PHOENIX -- The D-backs tendered contracts to 29 players, including all six of their arbitration-eligible players, before Tuesday night's deadline to offer contracts to any unsigned players.

Jeremy Hellickson, David Hernandez, Wade Miley, Cliff Pennington, Addison Reed and Mark Trumbo would have become free agents, but because they were tendered contracts, they will be eligible for salary arbitration.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tomas contract a record for D-backs

Deal for $68.5 million surpasses that given to Johnson before 1999 season

Tomas contract a record for D-backs

PHOENIX -- Yasmany Tomas' six-year, $68.5 million deal became the largest contract given to a free agent in D-backs history.

The previous high contract given to a free agent by the D-backs was the four-year, $52.4 million deal that brought left-hander Randy Johnson to Arizona prior to the 1999 season. The Big Unit made the deal look like a steal when he won four straight National League Cy Young Awards during that span, and the club picked up his option for 2003 at $16.5 million and then signed him to a two-year, $33 million contract that covered 2004-05. Johnson was dealt to the Yankees after the 2004 season.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs dedicated to growing community initiatives

In 2014, club outfitted over 20,000 Little Leaguers, rebuilt fields, donated to schools

D-backs dedicated to growing community initiatives

PHOENIX -- With all the big numbers being thrown around in Major League Baseball during the hot stove season, here's one to keep in mind when it comes to the Arizona Diamondbacks: $40 million.

Since their inaugural season in 1998, that is the amount of money that the D-backs have given out through all of their community-related initiatives.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Get to know Arizona's new dinger-crushing sensation

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Get to know Arizona's new dinger-crushing sensation

As workers began fleeing their offices to sit in traffic on the night before Thanksgiving, word began leaking out the D-backs had signed Cuban top prospect Yasmany Tomas. MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez reported that the 24-year-old outfielder agreed to a six-year, $68.5 million deal with an opt-out included. 

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D-backs release Spring Training schedule

Arizona to open Cactus League as road team in home park March 4

D-backs release Spring Training schedule

PHOENIX -- The D-backs will open their fifth Spring Training at Salt River Fields on March 3 with an exhibition game against Arizona State University before opening up a 34-game schedule the following day against the Rockies.

Technically, the D-backs will be the road team during that March 4 game as they share the Salt River Fields complex with the Rockies. Overall, the D-backs will play 18 home games at Salt River Fields and three as the road team there.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Johnson, Schilling reunited on Hall ballot

Big Unit a first-timer; D-backs teammate gets third crack

Johnson, Schilling reunited on Hall ballot

The two pitchers who carried the D-backs to their lone World Series title are together again on the 2015 Hall of Fame ballot.

Right-hander Curt Schilling returns to the ballot for the third year after finding his name on 29.2 percent of ballots last year and is joined by left-hander Randy Johnson, a first-timer.

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Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

D-backs to open spring slate vs. ASU

Game kicks off six-year Collegiate Baseball Series, including UA, GCU

D-backs to open spring slate vs. ASU

PHOENIX -- The D-backs will take on the Arizona State University baseball team March 3 at 3:10 p.m. MST at Salt River Fields to begin what will be an annual Collegiate Baseball Series.

Over the next six springs, the D-backs will play two games apiece against the three Division I NCAA baseball programs in the state, with Grand Canyon University and the University of Arizona also part of the rotation.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Johnson brings superb resume to Hall ballot

Big Unit tallied 303 wins, 4,875 strikeouts, five Cy Youngs in 22 seasons

Johnson brings superb resume to Hall ballot

There were certainly a lot of notable milestones in Randy Johnson's 22-year career in the big leagues -- being named to 10 All-Star teams, winning MVP of the World Series and five Cy Young Awards, tossing a perfect game and winning 303 games pitching for six different teams.

With that success, though, came a lot of responsibility, Johnson said. And there was never a tougher critic in terms of his performance than Johnson himself.

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Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.