D-backs avoid arbitration with Drew and Saunders

Jan 18, 2011, 8:10 PM | Updated: Jan 19, 2011, 6:26 am

PHOENIX- The Arizona Diamondbacks announced Tuesday that the club has avoided arbitration and agreed to terms with both left-handed starting pitcher Joe Sauders and shortstop Stephen Drew, according to team General Manager Kevin Towers.

Saunders, 29, agreed to a one-year contract worth $5.5 million according to Sport 620 KTAR’s John Gambadoro. The pitcher finished last season with an overall record of 9-1 wt a 4.47 ERA in 33 starts with the Angels and D-backs. He posted a 3-7 record with a 4.25 ERA in 13 starts after being acquired by Arizona in a deal that sent Dan Haren to the Angels on July 25.

Drew, 27, agreed to a two-year contract with a mutual option for 2013 worth $13.75 million according to Fox Sports’ Jon Morosi. The shortstop hit .278 with 33 doubles, 12 triples, 15 home runs and 61 RBI in 151 games in 2010. Defensively he posted a .984 fielding percentage, the best of his career.

General Manager Kevin Towers was thrilled to get Drew locked up for the next couple seasons.

“The shortstop position is a very tough position to fill especially a premium shortstop like him who is one of the top shortstops in the National League. Hopefully, it gives him some comfort that he knows he’s here in a D-backs uniform for the next two years and doesn’t have to worry about playing for a contract,” said Towers.

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