Pirates get flamethrower for Fetters

By Jim Callis

July 6, 2002

It didn’t register nearly as high on baseball’s Richter Scale as the Yankees’ Jeff Weaver blockbuster the day before, but on Saturday the Diamondbacks added some much-needed bullpen help by acquiring Mike Fetters from the Pirates for hard-throwing relief prospect Duaner Sanchez.

Fetters, a 37-year-old righthander, went 1-0, 3.26 in 32 appearances for Pittsburgh this year, striking out 29 in 30 innings. Armed with a fastball and splitter, he’ll add depth to an Arizona relief corps that has been riddled with injuries and ineffectiveness. He’s making $2.15 million this year, and the Diamondbacks have an option on him for 2003. In 559 major league games, Fetters has gone 29-37, 3.71 with 99 saves.

Sanchez, a 22-year-old righthander signed out of the Dominican in 1996, had one of the best fastball in the Diamondbacks system. He regularly throws 95-98 mph with good movement, and complements his heat with a low-80s slider. He made his big league debut earlier this year, posting a 4.91 ERA in six games with Arizona. He has spent most of this year in the minors at Double-A El Paso and Triple-A Tucson, going 5-4, 3.51 with 14 saves in 35 games, and 46 strikeouts in 41 innings. The Pirates assigned him to Triple-A Nashville.