Free-agent pitcher James Shields, who is being highly sought after ever since the end of his run as a starter for the Kansas City Royals after the World Series, is known to have interest amongst a number of teams looking for pitching help in their rotation.
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Count the Miami Marlins in on that action as well.
Affectionately known as ‘Big Game James’, the right-hander went 14-8 with a 3.21 ERA last season. However, he went 0-2 with a 7.00 ERA in the World Series against the San Francisco Giants. His best postseason performance was in the American League Division Series against the Los Angeles Angels. He had one start, went 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA. He gave up two runs in six innings.
Now, his services are being shopped around like he was on a tour or something. It seems like every week there is a new team said to be interested in Shields. This week, it’s the Marlins turn. They may not like the price tag that comes along with him, though.
The rumor is he is asking for upwards of $100 million per year. That’s not exactly pocket change for an organization that has traditionally had trouble filling seats.
The New York Yankees, Detroit Tigers, and Angels have been rumored to be the best fits for Shields and now yesterday it was reported that a team in fact has made an offer. The team has not been identified.
There had been talk the Royals would be interested in bringing him back, however, they’ve tied money up elsewhere and that seems to be unlikely now. Also, the Arizona Diamondbacks were said to be interested, but the high price tag also has seemingly put them out of the running.
His asking price of $110 million over five years does seem a bit steep for a pitcher of his caliber. Teams are probably wondering which pitcher will they get: the regular season or the postseason James. He didn’t exactly live up to his nickname in 2014.
Teams that are willing to spend money on pretty much anyone and have it available will be the ones that win the Shields sweepstakes. He could end up with the $110 million he is asking for or end up even below $100 million. The $100 million number was the one the Diamondbacks were rumored to scoff at last week.