PHOENIX (AP) egin in the desert.For the first time in nine years Roger Maris Jersey , the Arizona Diamondbacks will open a season without Paul Goldschmidt at first base. The fan favorite and perennial MVP candidate was traded during the offseason, leaving a huge hole in Arizonas lineup.The Diamondbacks insist theyre not in rebuilding mode, though. Not just yet.With key players still on the roster and new players who should fill at least some of the void, the Diamondbacks are hoping to again compete for a playoff spot even with one of baseballs best players on a new team.We have some new parts and we know that, Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. And as much as it hurt to let some of these guys go elsewhere, its the nature of the game. What itll mean is that we need to be a little bit better and a little bit sharper, and we love that challenge. Players are going to have to step up and the front office and myself are going to have to get a little sharper in every area. We like that type of challenge.Arizona traded Goldschmidt to St. Louis for catcher Carson Kelly, right-hander Luke Weaver, minor league infielder Andy Young and a 2019 draft pick. Despite Goldschmidt being one of the most popular players in franchise history, the Diamondbacks made the deal for fear of losing the six-time All-Star to free agency without getting anything in return.Goldschmidt wasnt the only key player to leave.Outfielder A.J. Pollock signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers and left-hander Patrick Corbin went to Washington. Right-hander Clay Buchholz, Arizonas best pitcher that last half of the 2018 season, is now in Toronto.The Diamondbacks made a handful of moves during the offseason and in spring training to help fill some of those holes, adding infielder Wilmer Flores, outfielder Adam Jones and reliever Greg Holland all veteran players that they hope can still be productive.A few more things to look for as the Diamondbacks enter the 2019 season:LAMBS SWITCH: The Diamondbacks are hoping Jake Lamb can make a smooth transition across the diamond.The former third baseman is switching positions to take Goldschmidts place at first base. Lamb worked out with Goldschmidt during the offseason to learn the position and was even using his glove during spring training.Lamb is a powerful hitter against right-handed pitching but struggles against lefties and is coming off shoulder surgery.He hit 30 homers and had 105 RBIs his last full season in 2017.NEW FACES: The Diamondbacks signed Flores after he spent the first six seasons of his career with the New York Mets and will likely use him primarily at second base. He hit .267 with 11 homers and 51 RBIs last season while playing multiple infield positions.Jones signed a one-year Matt Carpenter Jersey , $3 million contract in early March after spending his first 13 big league seasons with Baltimore. The five-time All-Star hit .281 with 15 homers and 63 RBIs last year. Hes expected to be Arizonas opening day centerfielder.Holland battled Archie Bradley to become Arizonas closer through spring training, but both struggled in Cactus League games.Kelly gets his first shot at being a starting catcher after being stuck behind Yadier Molina and Weaver is looking for a bounce back season after struggling at times last season.ROOKIES TO WATCH: Arizona once had one of the weakest farm systems in baseball, but has vastly improved it the past few years. Shortstop Jazz Chisolm and pitchers Jon Duplantier and Taylor Widener are rated among the top 100 minor league players in the country, but will likely need more time in the minors before being ready for big league action.ON DECK: The Diamondbacks open on the road against the Dodgers and play their first seven games away from Chase Field before their home opener against Boston on April 5. As you may know, Fangraphs put together power rankings for each position, ranking every team from 1-30 in regards to the overall value at each position. I thought this would be a good way for us to..."/Ringer illustrationStarting Pitchers Rank 3With all the turmoil and discussions over the season about the Astros losses in the rotation, they still held a very respectable ranking of 3rd. Verlander and Cole of course carrying the majority of the value with 10 WAR estimated between them, the power rankings list 11 pitchers with the following WAR: Verlander (5.2), Cole (4.8), McHugh (2.0), Miley (1.0), Peacock (1.3), James (1.0), Valdez (0.4) http://www.stlouiscardinalsteamshop.com/authentic-marcell-ozuna-jersey , Whitley (0.3), Bukauskas (0.2), Rodgers (0.1) and Armenteros (0.1). Fangraphs noted the remarkable depth, that they were 6 deep before even mentioning the #1 pitching prospect in all of baseball. Kim Klement-USA TODAY SportsRelief Pitchers Rank 2This was not surprising at all to me, the Yankees built a powerhouse of a bullpen buying almost every elite name reliever this past off-season. Additionally, Osuna and Pressly take the top spots in the Bullpen WAR with Will Harris continuing to be a rock-solid above average performer. The bullpen seems to be one of the most important elements in a successful playoff run. With the Astros depth in pitching in the minors its unlikely they would pursue any type of outside help. With that said, its hard to ignore that one of the games most elite closers is still a Free Agent in May. If he holds out till after the draft, Kimbrel would lose the compensation pick attached to him, and although I still find it incredibly unlikely would provide an immediate boost to an already stacked bullpen. Kim Klement-USA TODAY SportsDesignated Hitter Rank 6I was curious where the Astros would rank in this regard as well. Remember this ranking is out of 15 vs every other position is out of 30, so the Astros are just a hair over the middle of the pack here. Tyler White (455), Brantley (210) and AJ Reed (35) are the projected Astros DHs.Fangraphs had a surprisingly optimistic note in regards to White that I thought was worth adding here:The Astros continue to churn out so many talented young players that its easy to forget just how good Tyler White actually is. White made a mockery of the minor leagues, finishing with more walks than strikeouts at five separate minor league stops. The only time White didnt have a wRC+ of 109 or better was in 2016 in the big leagues, and his next-worst mark was 127 in a 2017 MLB cup of coffee. So whilst it might have looked like the 28-year-old came out of nowhere last year, he really didnt -- his 144 wRC+ Lou Brock Jersey , .257 ISO, .377 wOBA, and 10.1% walk rate were all well within his minor league career norms. In fact, White might still have some upside; his 20.7% strikeout rate was higher than any hed posted before in the minors and suggests theres room for improvement. Theres also some room for regression here -- his .330 xwOBA dovetails nicely with his .334 projection for 2019 -- but that might be overly pessimistic. Statcast spits out Gleyber Torres and Kris Bryant as comparables for his batted ball profile.ConclusionOverall, despite a brutal start to the season, the Astros are stacked. Nothing here came as overwhelmingly surprising but I was happy on the strong projections for both White and McHugh. If the team was looking to improve, an addition of someone like Kimbrel is an obvious easy-button, potentially adding almost 2 WAR and matching the Yankees (although it would be prorated depending on when he signed.) Of course, I also think this is pretty unrealistic given the rumored salary demands for a player who was not quite himself last year. I did find it interesting that Yordan Alvarez didnt find a way to break into any of the depth charts in either left or 1B given the broad range of players they had listed here. Adding him into the first base depth could have buoyed that position a bit. I dont think anyone will be surprised by the Catchers projections, but I really do believe Chirinos will take advantage of the Crawford Boxes and surprise some people. Tell me what you think of the rankings? Did Fangraphs get it right? Get it wrong? How do you disagree? If you were Luhnow, how would you pursue improving the team?