Joe Saunders' Spring Debut: Underwhelming As Expected - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Joe Saunders' Spring Debut: Underwhelming As Expected



    Last week I yawned at the Rangers adding journeyman Joe Saunders to their cast of candidates seeking a spot as the 5th starter. And Tuesday was a glimpse of why.

    Saunders, who last year with the Mariners was one of the worst starters in all of baseball with an ERA that sounded more like an Interstate (525), debuted in Spring Training Tuesday and promptly allowed four runs and six hits in three innings, including a homer to the White Sox’ Gordon Beckham.

    Admittedly, Saunders is not in peak pitching shape yet, having signed just last Wednesday. And, of course, Spring Training stats often are not an accurate measure of Spring Training performance.

    “I don’t consider results in Spring Training,” Saunders told reporters after his outing. “I want to make sure everything is good to go. I feel very happy with where I am. Really ahead of the curve from past years.”

    Nevertheless, Saunders showed nothing to indicate he’s about to yank the 5th spot in the rotation into his corner. Like he's been for the most part of his career, he was again just an advanced pitching machine for batters to take BP.

    And none of us should be surprised.

    The search for a 5th starter continues.

    A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently writes a sports/guy stuff blog at and lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.