The Arizona Diamondbacks have come to terms on a one-year deal worth $6 million with free-agent starting pitcher Joe Saunders, according to Steve Henson of Yahoo! Sports.
Saunders was non-tendered by the Diamondbacks last month but both sides worked towards bringing Saunders back on a two-year deal worth $12 million. However, the two sides left the bargaining table as Saunders was linked to several other teams.
But, eventually Saunders was not able to find a fit he was happy with and has decided to return to the D-backs on the one-year deal.
Saunders was a valuable piece of the Diamondbacks rotation that led the team to a NL West Title last year and while the D-backs have several young arms in the rotation already (Ian Kennedy, Daniel Hudson, Josh Collmenter, Trevor Cahill) and several more young arms on the way (Trevor Bauer, Tyler Skaggs), having a stabilizing veteran force in Saunders is important.
Saunders is considered an “innings eater” having pitched at least 185 innings per year since 2008 and it is beneficial to have the veteran Saunders be part of a talented but young rotation. Saunders had a very good season last year pitching 212 innings while going 12-13 with a 3.69 ERA in 33 games.