MLB Free Agents 2013: 5 Teams That Could Meet Anibal Sanchez's Demands
Anibal Sanchez may not be a true ace, but the 28-year-old Venezuelan starter is looking for near-ace money in his next contract.
According to Jon Paul Morosi of FOXsports.com, Sanchez is looking for a six-year, $90 million deal. For those who hate math as much as I do, that averages out to $15 million a season.
Crazy for a guy that hasn't posted an ERA below 3.55 since 2006, right?
Well, maybe not.
There are teams out there who may look to add the right-handed hurler, even if it costs them $15 million for the next six or so seasons.
Here are five clubs that could still be interested in Sanchez, even at his exorbitant price tag.
Los Angeles Dodgers
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Let us begin with the most obvious choice.
The Los Angeles Dodgers are both in need of a starting pitcher and willing to fork over crazy amounts of cash to fill their roster needs.
As it stands, the Dodgers' starting rotation consists of aging starters on the decline, as well as Chad Billingsley and Clayton Kershaw.
Despite having a good end to the season with the Dodgers, Josh Beckett has been anything but reliable over the past few years, while Ted Lilly will be coming off an injury and will be 37 years old by the time the 2013 season kicks off.
Aaron Harang is also getting up there in terms of age, as he'll turn 35 just after the season gets underway in 2013.
Enter Anibal Sanchez.
He could add depth to the rotation behind Kershaw, and more importantly, would be there for the next five or six years, something Beckett, Lilly and Harang cannot guarantee at their ages.
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Another team desperate for pitching?
The Milwaukee Brewers.
Aside from Yovani Gallardo, the Brewers don't have a single starter that strikes fear into opposing batters.
Anibal Sanchez could be that cure. While Sanchez may not exactly strike fear into opposing hitters, he is a drastic improvement from anything Milwaukee currently has in terms of starters two through five.
Money may not be a concern either, seeing as the Brewers were one of the teams rumored to be pursuing Josh Hamilton, who is looking for even more dough than Sanchez in his next contract.
At the moment, the Brewers are set in left field.
They'd be wise to use that money to sign a starting pitcher or two this offseason.
Boston Red Sox
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How can the Boston Red Sox not make a run at Anibal Sanchez?
He's probably the best pitcher that the Sox have a chance at picking up.
While Boston is trying to be more cautious in terms of the contracts it hands out, Sanchez may be worth the gamble.
While his numbers haven't been earth-shattering, he has been consistent over the course of his career.
After moving the salaries of Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez during the season, the money is there to spend. And after the big move made by the Toronto Blue Jays to improve their rotation, as well as the announcement that the New York Yankees will be bringing back Hiroki Kuroda for the 2013 season, the Red Sox have to do something if they hope to stay relevant in an even more competitive AL East.
This is their chance to make that move.
New York Yankees
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What discussion about one of the top free agents on the market would be complete without mentioning both the Red Sox and the Yankees?
While some may think the Yankees won't need to pursue the Venezuelan starter, I think they may still take a shot at inking him to a deal.
Now, I'm aware that Hank Steinbrenner wants to reduce the Yankees' payroll to the $189 million luxury tax threshold and that the team just re-signed Hiroki Kuroda for one year at $15 million. Problem is, there are still questions surrounding the Yankees rotation.
If they can't bring back Andy Pettitte, can they really rely on Ivan Nova and another starter as their fourth and fifth starting pitchers? It's doubtful with the Toronto Blue Jays improving drastically over the course of the past few weeks and the Baltimore Orioles only finishing last season two games back of the Bronx Bombers.
This means that signing Anibal Sanchez may be a necessity for New York.
With Kuroda only being on a one-year contract and getting up there in age anyway, he is only a band-aid for 2013 in terms of the Yanks rotation.
Sanchez would give the Yankees an established 1-2-3 punch of C.C. Sabathia, Phil Hughes and himself for years to come.
While the Yankees seem to finally have figured out the concept of frugality, skimping out on starting pitching will ensure that with the smaller payroll comes an increased chance of the Yankees missing the postseason, something that Yankees fans aren't too fond of.
Chicago White Sox
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Other than Jake Peavy and Chris Sale, the Chicago White Sox didn't have much to rejoice about when it comes to their starting rotation in 2012.
As of right now, it doesn't appear as though there's a whole lot of light at the end of the tunnel either.
With one of the worst prospect pools in MLB, it's not like the White Sox have a plethora of young talent waiting to bust onto the scene and propel this team to a championship.
This is where Anibal Sanchez comes in.
It gives Chicago a great opportunity to improve its rotation while snagging a starter from their division rivals.
Considering the fact that the Sox only lost out on the division to the Tigers by three games, signing Anibal Sanchez could help tighten that gap.