In an ongoing series, we'll take a look at possible free-agent and trade targets for the Texas Rangers this winter.
Target: Ervin Santana, RHP
2014 stats: 14-10, 3.95 ERA, 179 strikeouts, 63 walks, 196 innings pitched
Santana made the move to the National League and was solid, though his numbers didn't improve like you often see when a good AL pitcher gets to go to the NL and throw to a pitcher every time through the order. He was still a nice piece for the Atlanta Braves though, especially after their entire rotation seemed to hit the disabled list as soon as the season began.
He's now a free agent after signing a one-year deal with the Braves last season, and he's proven he can be a good pitcher in the AL while pitching for the Royals in 2013 and posting a 3.24 ERA. Of course, before that he was a longtime piece of the Los Angeles Angels rotation and had an up and down career that has seen him put up the best two seasons of his career since leaving Anaheim other than a 2008 all-star season.
Santana would likely require a multi-year deal but it wouldn't be near the commitment that the top-level free agent pitchers would require, as he could probably be had on a two- or three-year deal and possibly even on another one-year deal if no one bites. But as a 31-year-old coming off two good seasons, you'd think he'd be able to command more than a one-year deal.