One of the newest teams to grace the National League is the Arizona Diamondbacks. Beginning play within Major League Baseball in 1998, the Diamondbacks became the fastest expansion team to win a World Series in 2001, only 4 seasons after their creation. While it is quite surprising that a city like Phoenix didn’t have a professional baseball team considering its vast size and high population, the city actually grew very rapidly in the second half of the 20th century, meaning it wasn’t ready to house a major club until recent times. Another problem that kept the city without a MLB team was the heat. Playing outdoors in the desert summer is simply not a possibility.
The problem was rectified with the construction of Chase Field, a 48,000-seat stadium complete with a retractable roof, making it the first of its kind in America. After a disappointing first season, then owner Jerry Colangelo decided to fund a massive investment into the team’s players, pushing the team into debt but acquiring superstars like Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling. The results were immediate.
In 2001, the Diamondbacks did the unthinkable, and beat the New York Yankees in 7 games to win their first World Series title. Not bad for an expansion team just getting started!
But the good times were short lived as financial pressures led to Colangelo selling the team. The quality on the field also suffered, and the team went through a very barren patch for several seasons. However, there were some notable success stories for individual players, such as Brandon Webb winning the National League Cy Young Award in 2006.
Seeking to break new ground, the Arizona Diamondbacks changed their color scheme to a red-dominated design in 2007. Whether it was the new look or the growth of young players like Mark Reynolds, Stephen Drew, and Justin Upton, the team went on to a great year, finishing with the best record in the National League and reaching the NLCS, where they were swept by the Colorado Rockies.
Since then, the Diamondbacks have added one more NL West division title to their list of accomplishments, but the big glory of a World Series return has alluded them since that incredible run in 2001. 2011 saw the team battle the odds and return to top form with success by players like Ian Kennedy and Daniel Hudson. However, they would lose in the first round of the playoffs to the Milwaukee Brewers in a heartbreaking extra-inning Game 5.
Currently, the Diamondbacks are led by the sensational young 1st baseman Paul Goldschmidt and the strong arms of pitchers Patrick Corbin and Wade Miley. This core group of developing stars will surely make the future look bright for this baseball team. Autographs and signatures of these youngsters will be highly prized as their careers continue to blossom.
But in the short term, the Arizona Diamondbacks will have their hands full with two of baseball’s finest clubs playing within their division: the San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers, two teams that have gotten quite used to winning in recent years! The Diamondbacks will surely need to keep their focus and continue finding young talent to stay competitive and earn another shot at the MBL playoffs!
AAA Sports Memorabilia has a great selection of autographed Arizona Diamondbacks collectibles, including autographed Arizona Diamondbacks 8x10 photos, bats, gloves, and jerseys. Some of the most popular players from the Arizona Diamondbacks include: Brandon Allen, Carlos Baerga, Kris Benson, Jeff Cirillo, Tony Clark, Josh Collmenter, Stephen Drew, Zach Duke, Damion Easley, Shawn Estes, Armando Galarraga, Paul Goldschmidt, Luis Gonzales, Luis Gonzalez, Robby Hammock, Mike Hampton, Orlando Hernandez, Daniel Hudson, Kelly Johnson, Randy Johnson, Ian Kennedy, Mike Koplove, Rodrigo Lopez, Miguel Montero, Micah Owings, Jarrod Parker, Joe Saunders, Chris Snyder, Justin Upton, Brandon Webb, Bobby Witt, Chris Young.