One thing Jon Garland has going for him is his age. He’ll spend the 2009 season as a 29 year-old. Only a few other free agent starters will be under 30 that year: Oliver Perez (27), Mark Prior (27), and C.C. Sabathia (28). A team that can’t afford Sabathia but misses out on Perez might turn to Garland.
Garland is an innings eater, having topped 210 in each of the last three seasons. His low strikeout rate leads to plenty of hits, but he balances that with good control. His groundball rate had been on the decline from 2005-07, but he’s at an elite 55% this year. On the other hand, he’s whiffed just four in 30.3 innings (easily the worst K/9 in baseball).
If the oddities balance out and he has a typical Garland season, Carlos Silva’s four-year, $48MM deal might be the comparable.