Mark Trumbo just joined this Arizona family. His old team, the Los Angeles Angels, traded him to acquire pitching in a three-team trade. Now, he is the swinger of a big bat who is supposed to persuade pitchers not to walk Goldschmidt, either intentionally or semi-intentionally. Trumbo had known of Goldschmidt's prowess since his minor league days, when the two players were competing for a minor league home run title. He learned about his personality after he arrived in the desert.
"He's very, very disciplined. Very focused," Trumbo said. "He holds himself accountable. He doesn't let anything slide and some people may interpret it as being kind of hard on himself. That's just my perspective, but I think that makes him as great as he is. He doesn't let anything fester. If it's a bad rep, he understands probably what went wrong and the next one's better. He's just always improving."
Trumbo has seen different examples of clubhouse leadership. He played with the Angels when Torii Hunter ran the clubhouse with a fiery, vocal style. He was also there when Hunter left and there was, by some accounts, a void in leadership.
"Goldy's not the loud personality, but he always has very pertinent points," Trumbo said. "He's very thoughtful in his responses. I know he's only 26, but it surprises people when they hear him talk. He's wise beyond his years in the game."
When you hear people talking about Goldschmidt, it's impossible not to think of the team the Diamondbacks are trying to beat in Australia and all points beyond: the Dodgers. People tend to think of the Dodgers as brash and loud, the stuck-up rich kid. In Australian media, it certainly has been portrayed that way, with nearly every newspaper story mentioning the Dodgers' $240 million payroll and the Diamondbacks' $104 million payroll.
The Dodgers are viewed as flashy, the Diamondbacks as scrappy. If Goldschmidt is the face of what the Diamondbacks are trying to do, Yasiel Puig is the face of what the Dodgers are trying to do.
"Guys can play the game the way they want. Things aren't set in stone," Goldschmidt said. "There's no right or wrong way to do it."
If the Diamondbacks had eight more Goldschmidts, they certainly wouldn't have finished 11 games behind the Dodgers last season, coughing up the division lead on July 22 and never catching up. Goldschmidt is a career .344 hitter against L.A. pitching. He has pummeled nine home runs in 42 starts versus the Dodgers.
"He's kind of gotten to be a beast and hard to deal with, honestly, because he's tough to pitch to," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "He's killed us, so we just look at him as getting to be a tougher and tougher out."
Mattingly doesn't know Goldschmidt well, but he does know hitting, and he said he can tell that Goldschmidt studies because he adjusts as the pitching plan changes. He's hard to pitch inside and he can drive the ball with authority to right field.
Goldschmidt said he never looks at video of his swing. He spends all his time in the video room watching the opposing pitcher. He doesn't sound like a guy who's going to coast off last year's accomplishments.