Ervin Santana is relatively close to being the same pitcher as Ubaldo Jimenez. To Santana’s frustration, then, Jimenez landed a four year, $50 million payday from the Baltimore Orioles, yet Santana might have to wait until the middle of the season to sign somewhere.
With Santana’s reported refusal to drop his asking price despite the fact it is March, it is looking more and more like he might not find a team until after the season has started and the draft has come and gone (thus lifting the compensatory draft pick attached to signing him). As for any teams that might still make a move on him before the season? Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe believes there are two legitimate options left:
Much like Ubaldo Jimenez, the big asking price (plus the loss of a draft pick) has never warranted the megadeal he’s been demanding. Jimenez’s deal is where Santana’s ought to be — four years at about $50 million — which is why Santana remains unsigned. The Orioles still appear to be interested, even after signing Jimenez. The Jays say no, but don’t believe it.”
These teams fit because of the aforementioned draft pick issue: the Orioles have already signed Jimenez and Nelson Cruz, meaning they have already gone ‘all in’ on this season in favor of picks and it would cost them a lower round pick. The Blue Jays have two protected picks, meaning their compensatory pick would also be lower.
Both teams face the pressure of trying to build a contending team in the American League East, and there is no denying the fact that Santana could help in that regard.