PHOENIX -- The D-backs are nine games in back of the first-place Dodgers in the National League West, but GM Kevin Towers said the club is not looking to start selling off veteran players.
"I think it's still somewhat early," Towers said Wednesday. "We're not looking to sell. We're five games out of the Wild Card and there are two teams that are going to get in this year. I look at the National League as a whole -- if we get on a little run we can get right back in this thing. If we go through this another month, then it might be different the first part of July."
If the D-backs were to fall further out of the race before the Deadline, it's possible they could look to deal veteran left-hander Joe Saunders, who is a free agent and is not expected to re-sign with the club because of all the young near-Major League pitching talent.
Closer J.J. Putz is another possibility. The D-backs hold a $6.5 million club option on him for 2013. It includes a $1.5 million buyout, and he could be attractive to contenders.
Of course, the D-backs still plan on being contenders right up until the end.
That being said, Towers continues to work the phones.
"I'm always looking at trades, regardless of we're winning or losing or where we're at," he said. "I'm looking not only in the near future, but long term as well. I've already kicked some tires on some things. I'm not saying anything is close, but you're always looking, always keeping an eye on down below where your depth is."
Gibson stays positive amid D-backs' struggles
PHOENIX -- With the team playing below expectations and ownership speaking out publicly against a pair of players, some have wondered if the D-backs' clubhouse might be on the verge of breaking off into factions.
It is something that the organization will be proactive about.
"It's always a concern," D-backs GM Kevin Towers said. "My hope is it doesn't come to that, because when that happens then it's usually a lost cause. You try to address that before it becomes a problem. A lot of that is pure speculation, hearsay, whispers -- and that's something that [manager Kirk Gibson] will probably handle. It's not my spot to be down in the clubhouse. He's aware of it, and I think he's the right guy to kind of rally the troops and keep us as one."
To this point there does not appear to be any infighting, and the team has played better of late, winning two of three from the Padres and Rockies.
"That's the only way we're going to fight through these difficult times -- is to pull for one another and support one another and not start pointing fingers," Towers said. "This is the time when things get out there and people start airing out sometimes dirty laundry publicly, and that's never good. If there's issues that we have within our clubhouse, then we need to deal with it head on among us. I'm not saying it's there yet, but I think we'll catch it before it happens."
Gibson held a team meeting Wednesday, and while he declined to specify what he said to his players, it is a safe bet that the tone was a positive one.
Despite the public image he gained during his playing days as a fire-breathing, outspoken person who was quick to fly off the handle, Gibson is far more measured as a manager and is more likely to praise than criticize his players.
"My goal is to stay focused and stay on task and not to lose our composure, our cause and who we are," Gibson said when asked about what he planned on saying in the meeting. "Sometimes we just need to sit down and reaffirm that fact. We're going to affirm good things."
Towers: Kendrick's words may motivate
PHOENIX -- While recent radio comments made by D-backs managing general partner Ken Kendrick may have ruffled some feathers, GM Kevin Towers said his boss has every right to speak his mind.
"He's the owner, and he's got every right to vent if he feels like he wants to vent," Towers said. "I think he stands by his comments, and that happens in New York City about once a month and in Boston and other cities. It shocks everybody when it happens out here, because you don't see it happen that often. He's a good person, he cares and to me I'm just proud that I work for an owner that cares that much, that watches the game, follows the game and kind of feels like he has his finger on the pulse of what's happening and wants to get better."
Towers was asked if he thought Kendrick was trying to light a fire under the team.
"I don't know all the reasons behind it," Towers said. "Maybe it was a shot over the bow to all of us to 'Hey let's go.' Who knows, maybe it will motivate us."
D-backs won't force Bauer's arrival
PHOENIX -- While fans clamor for him to be called up, the D-backs do not appear to be in a hurry to call up top prospect Trevor Bauer.
The right-hander was promoted to Triple-A Reno last month, and he's gone 2-0 with a 2.52 ERA in his first four starts for the Aces.
With Ian Kennedy, Daniel Hudson, Joe Saunders, Trevor Cahill and Wade Miley pitching well, the D-backs do not have a spot for Bauer.
D-backs GM Kevin Towers was asked Wednesday if the organization was looking to try to make room for Bauer.
"Not really," Towers said. "Those things kind of work themselves out."
It is possible the D-backs could choose to deal Saunders, who will be a free agent at season's end, or an injury could open the door. Until something changes, though, Bauer just has to be patient.
In 12 starts between Double-A Mobile and Reno, Bauer, who was the No. 3 overall pick in last year's Draft, has compiled a 9-1 record to go with a 1.96 ERA.
"He's pretty much done all he probably can do at Double-A and Triple-A, and he's been very successful at it," Towers said. "Sometimes you just have to wait your turn -- you know wait, for that opportunity.
"How that opportunity presents itself -- be it an injury or a trade or somebody's not performing and ends up going down and then you take advantage of it. But right now, I don't know who I'd take out of the rotation to make room for him, and I don't want to put him in the bullpen."
Towers also said that going with a six-man rotation was not under consideration.