Miami Marlins and Anibal Sanchez are due for a reunion

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - AUGUST 23: Anibal Sanchez
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - AUGUST 23: Anibal Sanchez /

The Miami Marlins parted ways with franchise favorite Anibal Sanchez in 2012. It could be time to bring him back.

The Miami Marlins have already started beefing up their roster with low-risk, high-upside free agents. They signed Jacob Turner to a minor league contract last week. His contract includes an invitation to spring training.

Miami figures to make several more similar signings. As the Marlins head towards a 2018 season where many expect them to lose as many as 100-games, saving money is the name of the game. They’re on the prowl for low-cost, MLB quality options who are looking to rebound.

After trading Anibal Sanchez to the Detroit Tigers in 2012, the righty is available on the free agent market this year.

Sanchez is coming of a season in which he produce -0.8 WAR. He was worse in 2016, where he produced -1.2 WAR. Now that his lucrative contract with the Tigers has run its course, he’ll be available for almost nothing in free agency.

The market has been slow to develop in free agency in general. Pitchers like Sanchez, veteran arms looking to sign a short-term “prove it” type contract aren’t flying off the shelves.

He made $16.8 million last season, but may be forced to accept a minor league contract this year. And if he is, the Miami Marlins are uniquely positioned to offer him a realistic chance at competing for a spot in the rotation.

Sanchez has shown flashes of the brilliance he featured earlier in his career. In his 17 starts last year, he finished four of them with a game score better than 60. If he can build on those starts, a reunion with the Miami Marlins might do wonders of his career, and the Marlins 2018 season.

Anibal Sanchez will be 34-years old when the season starts in April. With a solid season, he might be able to convince a team somewhere else in the league to offer him one more long-term contract before he calls it a career.