This is the latest disappointing development for the 32-year-old Saunders, whose career has fallen off a cliff since the second half of the 2016 season. Then with the Blue Jays, Saunders earned an All-Star nod on the strength of a terrific first half, but his numbers declined sharply thereafter. While Saunders did land a $9MM guarantee from the Phillies during the ensuing offseason, he fared so poorly with them that they released him that June. Saunders then ended up returning to the Blue Jays, though the Canadian wasn’t able to work his way back to relevance in his second stint with them.
Also a former Mariner – with whom he was a well-regarded prospect – Saunders hasn’t played in the majors since his ill-fated 2017 campaign, and his 2018 minor league production with the Orioles and White Sox was woeful. The lifetime .232/.305/.397 hitter did put together a respectable .261/.393/.348 line during 23 spring at-bats with the Rockies, however.