MLB: Free Agent Peek, Anibal Sanchez
When you look at this offseason’s free agent group, you realize up front that there is just not a lot of quality starting pitching available. This just shows another reason of course why great drafting and development is key, in order to become a contender.
There is only one starter on the free agent market that you can see is an ace, and that of course is Zack Greinke. Despite the lack of overall starting pitching talent on the market, there are a few good pitchers available other than Greinke. The next arm in line is 28-year-old right-hander, Anibal Sanchez.
Sanchez is not only just reaching the prime of his career, but he has proved to be a very good, consistent number two starter the past four seasons. Last year he was dealt from the Miami Marlins to the Detroit Tigers, where he was a big part of the Tigers pitching staff, that eventually made it all the way to the World Series. Sanchez pitched very well in the playoffs, so you know he can pitch under pressure.
When you factor in age as well as consistency, there is no doubt that plenty of clubs will be going after Sanchez. The Tigers, of course will want to bring him back. An up and coming team like the Kansas City Royals should very much be in on Sanchez, especially with the club saying they are willing to spend on starting pitching this offseason. Also look for the Minnesota Twins and Toronto Blue Jays to get involved. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Dodgers are all going to be in on the Greinke sweepstakes, but the clubs that lose out on Greinke, will possibly turn their attention to Sanchez. Also add to the fact, that since Sanchez was traded mid-season and ineligible for a qualifying offer from the Tigers, teams won’t have to surrender a drat pick to sign him.
Prediction: Sanchez will sign a five-year deal, worth a little under $75 million total with the Dodgers.