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AP: c8be3e0c-a733-4d78-91eb-f81b00a9a0cb
Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Ian Kennedy delivers to Tampa Bay Rays' Desmond Jennings during the first inning of an interleague baseball game Tuesday, July 30, 2013, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
So, that's it, then?

Ian Kennedy is done as an Arizona Diamondback?

It wasn't long ago that Kennedy was leading Arizona to an unexpected 2011 playoff appearance. He went 21-4, posted a 2.88 ERA in 222 innings of work, eight strikeouts per nine innings -- all the numbers were there, all the promise was there. At age 27, and three years short of free agent eligibility, the talk surrounding Kennedy was about a contract extension, one of those Evan Longoria-we-better-lock-him-up-now deals, the kind that assures a mid-market club of keeping a young established star as a face for the franchise for years beyond when he would naturally be eligible to leave.

Wheeeww!!! Dodged that bullet.

Something went wrong. Something went desperately wrong. In three seasons, Kennedy went from legitimate staff ace to no better than a number three starter to we can't afford to keep him in the rotation to trading him to a division rival for a specialty reliever and a minor leaguer that doesn't even rank as one of San Diego's top 20 prospects.

So, that's it, then?

Kevin Towers determined that Kennedy was finished, that it was hopeless to think he could revert back to his winning ways. Does Kennedy lack the talent, meaning 2011 was the fluke? Or does Kennedy lack that element that Towers and Kirk Gibson have made the calling card for the current Diamondbacks: grit?

If Towers and Gibson began to doubt Kennedy's heart, then they might have doubted his ability to overcome his current struggles. After all, things weren't exactly getting better. A 6.83 ERA in June and 4.89 in July. One win since May 15.

So, that's it, then?

Ian Kennedy for Joe Thatcher?

Kevin Towers' trade deadline assessment of his struggling Diamondbacks was that the team's playoff chances are so incredibly bleak that it's better to take on more of a role of a seller than a buyer? That despite spending more than two consecutive months in first place, the 2013 Snakes have no business trying to win the West?

That must be it, because no one could look at this team in its present state and determine "lefty specialist, that'll fix it."

So, that's it, then?

The Dodgers overtake the Diamondbacks in the standings, and the players react as if to say, "Oh well, it was a good run. Better luck next year."

I've personally written multiple articles suggesting ways the Dodgers could fall apart in the second half and ways the D-backs could still win the west. But other than me and the lady that waves the flags in the upper deck of every home game, apparently no one else in Arizona believes the Dodgers can be beaten, including the players on the Arizona roster. The team has played lifelessly in the second half.

A 3-7 record. In eight of eleven games the team has scored three runs or fewer. Six games lost in the standings in a week-and-a-half?

And still, the Diamondbacks are just 3.5 games back with 56 games to play!

But instead of the organization behaving as if they're in a pennant race -- which they are -- the fans are instead treated to lackluster play and a lackluster approach to the deadline?

So, that's it, then?

Chuck Powell, KTAR.com & ArizonaSports.com contributor

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