Old Sneakers wrote:Obviously I do not know how the winter meetings will shake out but as is now the team has Jake Arrieta, Jason Hammel, Wei-Yin Chen, Miguel Gonzalez, Chris Tillman, Zach Britton, Tommy Hunter, Dana Eveland and yes even Steve Johnson that it can consider as options for the 2013 rotation. I count nine bodies right there.
I would be surprised (and disappointed) if the team is counting on anyone else than Hammel, Chen, Gonzles, and Tillman for their rotation next season. IMO Arrieta, Matusz, and Britton should be kept at AAA to finish the development they didn't get until last year. Hunter has become a lock down reliever and may be a potential closer. Steve Johnson slots best as a RH long reliever and swing starter. Eveland is not on the 40 Man Roster will will be gone shortly if he hasn't left already.
Old Sneakers wrote:OK Britton, Matusz are Lefties (under-performing or not), still young and way fewer innings pitched than Saunders. Come June Saunders will be 32. Not a death sentence or end of his career age. However, even most of the really good ones decline at that point. I keep thinking that he is going to want a nice payday. Maybe the Orioles will try, but I suspect that they won't. I do consider Joe Saunders a legit #3 or #4 SP certainly. But for how long? The man is going to get attractive offers on the open market and do you want to lock up money for 3-4 years to keep him? I just do not see it happening.
Several things to consider here. Saunders may WANT a big payday, but this winter's FA market for SPs is the absolutely full of options for teams. I can't remember when so many quality SPs were available and that's only going to drive the prices WAY down. SPs that would have demanded a two year deal in other years may have to settle for a minor league one this year. He had six good weeks out of an entire season. Teams simply aren't going to throw money at him when they can buy other SPs they see as equal value for a LOT less money.
Simply put: the ONLY way Joe Saunders gets "3-4 years" is if he robs a liquor store.
Old Sneakers wrote:Jake Arrieta and Brian Matusz have been the team's biggest disappointments. However, I do not see the team parting with both unless the return in a trade is something really significant. By the time the winter meetings take place I think he will already have signed elsewhere. If these two were not part of the equation it might not be such a tough sell to this or any similar player. However, here it is and they do play a part in it.
I wouldn't be surprised to see a couple of the SPs I want to see go back to AAA traded this winter so we can fill other holes. If that happens we'll be glad we added veteran SP depth.