Monster blast has Goldschmidt in mix at first
Gibson won't rule young slugger out of running to make club
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Paul Goldschmidt's massive three-run homer blasted the D-backs into extra innings Saturday with two outs in the ninth inning.
Could Goldschmidt hit his way into the mix at first base when it comes to the Opening Day roster?
While that would seem unlikely, given the fact that he has not played above the Class A level, D-backs manager Kirk Gibson was adamant in saying it was.
"I don't think that's an appropriate question," Gibson said. "Everybody's in the mix. Everybody is. He's in there, yeah, he's in there. I mean, crazier things have happened, right? I wouldn't rule it out."
2010 Spring Training - Arizona Diamondbacks
News & Features
- Corbin wins No. 5 rotation spot, Marte makes roster
- Webb to throw out Opening Day first pitch
- D-backs' bats quiet vs. Reds, Bailey in spring finale
- Marte closing in on roster spot
- D-backs confirm Ross to open season on DL
Sights & Sounds
Spring Training Info
Goldschmidt was 2-for-3 with the homer and a double in the 8-7 loss to Colorado in 10 innings. The shot, which was estimated to have traveled 435 feet, came on a 1-1 pitch from Adam Jorgenson.
"He was patient enough to get that pitch and then disciplined enough to put a good swing on it," Gibson said. "That's what we're looking for. You can't go up there and get yourself out in those situations, it's hard enough as it is. It was a mistake pitch and he executed properly. I like that a lot."
Goldschmidt hit .314 with 42 doubles, 35 homers and 108 RBIs last year for Visalia in the California League in just his second professional season.
"With the game on the line right there, it was nice to get a hit," Goldschmidt said. "But it was just one at-bat and it's a long Spring Training, so we'll see what happens."
Goldschmidt said he'd faced Jorgenson six or seven times before.
"I'd kind of seen all his pitches and just got a good pitch to hit -- and luckily I connected with it," Goldschmidt said. "I'm just trying to learn from all the veteran guys we have and all the big league guys we have. They're so knowledgeable and have been around. They've been really helpful with not just the physical stuff, but the mental side of the whole game and really just making all of us feel welcome."
Heilman impresses in Spring Training debut
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Aaron Heilman has no intention of making D-backs manager Kirk Gibson's rotation decisions easy.
"I'm totally open minded," Gibson said.
Heilman was impressive in his first outing of the spring on Saturday, allowing one hit over two innings to open the D-backs' 8-7 10-inning loss to the Rockies.
With Joe Saunders, Ian Kennedy and Daniel Hudson all but assured spots, that leaves Barry Enright, Zach Duke, Armando Galarraga and Heilman battling for the final two positions.
Given their contract situations, Duke and Galarraga seem to have the advantage.
"I think we have a lot of great pitchers in camp," Heilman said. "Hopefully, we make it tough on [Gibson] to make a decision. I'm right there in the mix, and I have to just go out there and do what I can do -- not worry about anything else -- and just get ready for the season."
One thing that might work against Heilman, who has spent the past five seasons in the bullpen, is that he could easily slide into a relief role, whereas the other candidates cannot.
Heilman was asked if he would be upset if he didn't make the rotation.
"I don't know," he said. "I'm not going to sit and say how I'm going to feel if it doesn't happen. I'm going to get ready for the season, do what I need to do to prepare to pitch, and right now, that's prepare to be a starter until I hear otherwise."