Diamondbacks pursue Daniel Cabrera

Despite a report out of the Dominican Republic, saying the Diamondbacks have reached an agreement with starting pitcher Daniel Cabrera, it appears nothing has actually been agreed as yet. The report [and thanks to Mrs. SnakePit for her translational skills!] says that he would throw two or three times for the Reno Aces, and if that went well, would then be pulled up to the majors again. The Diamondbacks, while admitting an interest in the pitcher, said nothing had been signed, and the player's agent said terms were still being discussed.

Cabrera went 0-5 with the Nationals, posting a 5.85 ERA in nine games, including eight starts, before being released by the team at the end of May. Overall, the 28-year old has a career 5.09 ERA in six major-league seasons. More analysis after the jump.

Let's be honest: when you get released by the Washington Nationals, it's never a good sign, and former D-back front-office guy Mike Rizzo was particularly unimpressed: "I look beyond the contract and look at the execution and performance of the player, and it wasn't up to par. I was tired of watching him." However, he could have been forgiven for saying exactly the same things about Felipe Lopez, cut by the Nationals in the middle of last season, and that seems to have worked out okay for the teams who picked him up since.

There seems little doubt about Cabrera's potential, but it never quite seems to have been converted into results. He did have a couple of half-decent seasons with Baltimore, posting 96 ERA+ in both 2005 and 2006, but control seems to be his main bugbear - in his five years with the Orioles, he was always among the top three in the American League for free-passes, leading the pack a couple of times. In 2008, he was first in wild-pitches and HBP and second and walks. He also had ten wild pitches this year in only 40 innings. Chris Snyder and Miguel Montero may want to upsize their gloves.

It's obvious that the team is looking for an alternative to Yusmeiro Petit in the #5 spot, with our other options injured, ineffective, or both. He will be a cheap acquisition for the team, the Nats having already eaten the rest of his $2.6 million contract for the year - if it goes reasonably well, he could be a contender for the fifth spot at the back of the rotation next year. That might be a tad over-optimistic, but even a 5.85 ERA is a good deal better than the 7.17 figured, managed by the Triple-Headed Beast of Webb Replacement.

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