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Arizona Diamondbacks

Updated Jul 30, 2013 - 4:10 pm

Venom Vision: Left-handed relief options

Kevin Towers and the trade deadline would seem to be a match made in heaven, but not this season. After making a number of moves this offseason, the Arizona Diamondbacks general manager told the media Sunday that he likes the guys he has in the clubhouse and that the only area he's really targeting going into Wednesday's deadline is left-handed relief opposite Tony Sipp.

While there's been some buzz surrounding the team's potential interest in right-handed reliever Brian Wilson, now that he's off market, here's three names -- of the left-handed variety -- that Towers might want to consider.

James Russell (Cubs): Russell, the son of former MLB closer Jeff Russell, is just 27 years old and has two more years under contract. He's a reliever who has gotten better with age and lefties are hitting just .179 off of him.

Antonio Bastardo (Phillies): Like Russell, Bastardo is 27, but he is a free agent at season's end. Lefties hit a little bit better off him to the tune of .207, but he's a hard thrower (more than a strikeout per inning) and he's made appearances in three different postseasons.

Joe Thatcher (Padres): Now it might be a bit of a pipe dream to expect Thatcher to move within the division, but the left-hander knows the division very well and has allowed just four runs in 24 appearances against the NL West in 2013. And, none of those runs came against the Dodgers. It's nice to dream but Josh Byrnes isn't likely to do his former team any favors.

About the Author


School: USC

Started with Bonneville Phoenix: September 2012

Favorite Sports Memory: Going to Game 7 of the 2001 World Series

Favorite all-time athlete: A.C. Green

Favorite sports movies: Field of Dreams, The Scout and Remember the Titans

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