Baltimore Orioles starter Joe Saunders has moved around in his seven-year career and will be a free agent once the 2012 World Series concludes. Saunders does not exactly have flashy numbers, but there is no question his services will be required by some team. Are the Milwaukee Brewers going to pursue Saunders as a secondary option for their rotation?
Saunders began the 2012 season with the Arizona Diamondbacks, but was traded to the Orioles in late August. He helped Baltimore go on an incredible tear to reach the postseason for the first time since 1997. Saunders pitched far better with the Orioles than he did with the Diamondbacks, as he posted a 3-3 record with a 3.63 earned run average in 44 2/3 innings with the team.
The Brewers are looking to bolster their starting rotation any way they can with a veteran arm. Saunders may not be Milwaukee’s first choice, but they will certainly sign him if it comes down to it. The fact that Saunders is left-handed helps considering the Brewers only have one starter who is a southpaw and that is Chris Narveson. Also, Saunders has pitched an average of 175 innings over the last five years.
Milwaukee not only wants a starter that is capable of going deep into games, but they need someone who can handle the pressure of the postseason. Saunders may have finished the regular season 9-13 with a 4.07 ERA, but he handled himself well in the playoffs against two high-powered offensive teams.
Saunders allowed only one earned run and struck out four batters in 5 2/3 innings in a win against the Texas Rangers. He pitched even better in a win against the New York Yankees in which he allowed one earned run and struck out five hitters in 5 2/3 innings.
Saunders pitched well enough in high pressure situations to garner himself a multi-year contract. Considering he made $6 million in 2012 means the Brewers would be able to get him for a decent price. If Milwaukee is unable to acquire Ryan Dempster or Kyle Lohse, I would expect them to go after Saunders,.
Michael is a MLB and NBA Featured Writer for Rant Sports, but covers topics for various teams in baseball, basketball, and football. Make sure to follow Michael on Twitter @MichaelTerrill and on Facebook.