Justin Upton and the Arizona Diamondbacks had a rough go in 2010. Plagued by a historic case of strikeout fever—the batters whiffed 144 times more than any other club in the National League and the pitchers struck out the third-fewest opponents on the senior circuit—and a poor defense, the team lost 97 games.
Manager A.J. Hinch and GM Josh Byrnes got the axe, and have been replaced by Kirk Gibson (in the dugout) and Kevin Towers (in the front office).
The team did little this winter to suggest they feel like contenders in 2011. Their pitching staff was young but got even younger, and their lineup now features more contact hitters but far less upside risk. Still, this team has some pieces that have enigmatically struggled in recent years, and if they put it all together, who knows? The snakes could bite some unsuspecting National League foes.
Here are 10 things that have to happen first.
This is the first in a series of pieces listing 10 things that would have to go right for each MLB team to win a pennant this season. To find out when your favorite team's article comes out, follow me on the twitter @MattTrueblood, or sign up for your team's Bleacher Report newsletter.