BY SPNW Staff 07:23PM 02/07/2013

Mariners pursuing Joe Saunders for No. 5 spot

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The Mariners and veteran free agent starter Joe Saunders are close to a one-year deal, according to and The signing would add a lefty to what would likely have been an all-righty  rotation. Hector Noesi is likely losing his spot as the projected No. 5 starter.

Saunders spent most of last season with Arizona before being dealt to Baltimore in late August. He went 9-13 with a 4.07 ERA, 1.34 WHIP and 112 strikeouts in 174 innings between the two teams.

He succeeded in 2012 in large part due to cutting down on his walk rate, allowing just 2.0 free passes per nine innings, almost a full walk per nine innings less than his career rate entering last season.

Saunders has enjoyed success in Seattle during his year, going 6-0 with a 2.13 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and 23 strikeouts in 55 innings over nine starts at Safeco Field. His most recent start in Seattle came on Sept. 19 of last year, when he pitched eight innings of one-run ball while allowing five hits, no walks and one home run but not receiving a decision.


  • RadioGuy

    Saunders won’t be a savior, but he’s a lefty and will be an upgrade over Noesi for one year. Not a bad signing who won’t cost any prospects.

    • art thiel

      It’s probably better than finding Millwood on the scrap pile last year.