Arizona Diamondbacks: Could Tyson Ross Be An Option?

Tyson Ross, 29, would be a good fit in the Arizona Diamondbacks rotation. The free-agent pitcher is looking for a one-year deal for the 2017 season.

With a rather quiet off-season, we are left to speculate as to whether or not the Arizona Diamondbacks will add any more pieces to a somewhat surprisingly good roster.

With Taijuan Walker being thrust into the rotation, are there rotation options outside of the organization? General Manger Mike Hazen could make one more move that would be a domino-effect when it comes to acquiring young talent.

Let’s be honest here, this Diamondbacks rotation is full of maybes. Maybe they will be good, due to a large amount of potential. Or maybe they will be so bad that the front office who acquires you gets fired (sorry Shelby Miller).

With that being said, there is still a good rotation option on the market; Tyson Ross. Ross is a seven-year pro who has asserted himself as ace material over the last few years. However, after learning he had Thoracic Outlet Syndrome he opted for surgery and only made one start this past season (5.1 Innings Pitched).

What is Thoratic Outlet Syndrome?

The Mayo Clinic describes it as, “Thoracic outlet syndrome is a group of disorders that occur when blood vessels or nerves in the space between your collarbone and your first rib (thoracic outlet) are compressed. This can cause pain in your shoulders and neck and numbness in your fingers.”

While this is a lot to digest, you could see how this derailed Ross’ free agent season. It is believed by many inside the industry that Ross could return sometime before the second half of the season.

Negatives of Making This Move

Let’s start with the negatives because…why not? While Ross brings a lot of talent with him, the syndrome that has haunted him this past season is a very serious thing. If for some reason it were to not have healed fully then there could be a big issue.

Ross is asking for a one year contract. This means he wants a, “show me” deal. However, if Ross is going to miss most of the season then you may be grossly overpaying for someone who won’t even be with your team past this year.

Finally, how long will it take him to return to form? Will he ever return to his All-Star form? A mental hurdle is always present when coming off of an injury, however the rather oddity of this injury may be harder to overcome then we may think.

The domino-effect of signing Ross

Okay, there is obviously A LOT to like about Tyson Ross. He is still under thirty years old (29) and before this past season, displayed plenty of velocity. A big six-foot-six right hander who has a 97 mph fastball, also possesses a wicked nasty slider. One that helped him to such dominance over a three-year period.

While the talent is off the charts, the statistics help bring a backbone to the argument. While being 29-34 from 2013-2015, Ross’ advanced statistics shed a better light on his pitching prowess. In 2013 his WAR was around 1.9 which places him at a solid fringe starter. However, his next two season would garner a WAR of 3.2 and 4.4. These numbers indicate him being a good player (3.2), and an All Star (4.4). This statistic encompasses all of the defense metrics, along with his in depth pitching statistics.

Finally, his signing with the team could garner prospects for this rebuilding farm system. With a glut of starting pitching, obviously one or two of these young arms is on the move. With guys like Jose Quintana holding up the trade market with their respective clubs asking price, an Archie Bradley type of player might raise some attention from other teams.

While it is an incredible gamble to go after a guy with such a freaky injury, Tyson Ross’ value allows the Diamondbacks to get a well rested starter for the second half of the season. Also, if General Manager Mike Hazen wants to be bold he could acquire Tyson Ross and once he arrives, flip whatever young gun is garnering the most trade attention.

Although the financial situation is a little above my pay grade, if the Diamondbacks want to join the sweepstakes they will need to get behind the Cubs, Pirates, Rangers, and Astros, who have already expressed interest in the big righty.

Despite a few uncertainties, Ross is definitely worth it and would complement Walker and Zack Greinke nicely in this revamped rotation.