For some fans of the Arizona Diamondbacks, the end of the 2021 MLB season can’t come fast enough.
The D-backs will begin their final series of the season Friday with a three-game homestand against the Colorado Rockies. And it has been a season to forget on the field.
However, off the field, we may remember the Diamondbacks’ season for the club leading the charge to bring legal sports betting to Arizona and kicking off the official Sept. 9 launch with the opening of the state’s first retail sportsbook at Chase Field.
Although there may not be a lot of cheers in the ballpark over the team’s performance, the excitement brought to Arizona thanks to sports wagering allows for a “glass half-full” mindset when looking at what’s to come for the franchise.
Bad News: The Diamondbacks 2021 Season Has Been Bad…Really Bad
After a 2020 MLB season was tossed and turned thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, Diamondbacks fans were excited for what was to come in 2021: A chance to watch baseball live and in-person once again. Unfortunately, hopes for a successful season went out the window quick, fast and in a hurry.
The Arizona Diamondbacks head into Friday’s season-ending series against the Rockies with a record of 50-109. That’s the worst record in all of Major League Baseball. In fact, if they lose their final three games of the season, the D-backs will set the franchise record for most losses in a season.
Before the season started, Caesars Sportsbook set the over/under for Arizona wins at 75.5. At the time, Arizonans couldn’t legally place bets in the state. But anyone that went to Las Vegas to put money down on the over had a rough summer.
Good News: Diamondbacks Are “All-in” on Sports Betting
The Diamondbacks organization jumped out in front to show full support behind bringing legal sports betting to Arizona. The D-backs opened a temporary sportsbook next to the ticket window outside of Chase Field thanks to their partnership with Caesars Sportsbook Arizona, marking the first MLB stadium where sports fans can place an in-person wager.
Fans now have something else to look forward to when it comes to the games thanks to AZ betting apps that have gone live in the state. Not only can you bet on who you think will when the games, but you can place prop bets on players and in-game outcomes. For example, how many strikeouts will the starting pitcher throw, or how many home runs will the team hit? Not to mention that you can make bets pitch by pitch during live game action.
However, all the excitement is looking forward to when the official retail sportsbook opens next year in downtown Phoenix. The state-of-the-art sportsbook, sports bar and broadcast studio will replace Game Seven Grill outside of Chase Field.
Plans call for a 20,000-square-foot, two-story venue. About half of that will be indoor and outdoor dining space that will feature an extensive menu. There will be two floors of sports betting space, a full-service bar, VIP lounge and wall-to-wall TVs. The sportsbook will be open not only on game days but also year-round. Furthermore, there will be flexible hours of operation to cater to specific sporting events.
The project is expected to be completed in early 2022.
Arizona Diamondbacks Fans Look to the Future
The Diamondbacks head into 2022 with a lot of questions.
Manager Torey Lovullo will be back next year, but how long will his leash be? Will pitcher Madison Bumgarner be able to bounce back after a difficult 2021 season? Will the club be able to bring in some power hitting in free agency? All that remains to be seen.
However, help could be on the way. Many experts think highly of the D-backs farm system. The club has three players on the MLB’s Top 100 prospects list. Not to mention they will have one of the top two picks in the upcoming 2022 MLB draft.
Diamondbacks fans will have one last chance to cheer on their team during the final homestand of the regular season against Colorado. The Rockies are having a disappointing season themselves, so it is not impossible for Arizona to win this series and avoid having the worst season in franchise history. But to put it in perspective, the three projected starting pitchers in the series have only two wins in their 10 combined starts this season.