Eager to add a veteran starter to their rotation for the stretch run, the Orioles have acquired left-hander Joe Saunders from the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for right-handed reliever Matt Lindstrom. The Orioles also acquired cash in the deal and will send a player to be named later to the D-backs.
The 31-year-old Saunders was 6-10 with a 4.22 ERA in 21 starts for the Diamondbacks. He is 75-62 in 182 career starts with the Angels and D-backs. He graduated from West Springfield High School in Springfield, Va.
Lindstrom, acquired in the offseason from Colorado along with Jason Hammel in the Jeremy Guthrie deal, was 1-0 with a 2.72 ERA in 34 appearances for the Orioles.
To replace Lindstrom in the bullpen, the Orioles have recalled right-hander Jake Arrieta from Triple-A Norfolk, and he is expected to arrive at Camden Yards in time for today’s 1:35 p.m. game against Toronto.
Arrieta, the team’s opening day starter, went 3-9 with a 6.13 in 18 starts for the Orioles earlier this season. He was 3-4 with a 4.91 ERA in eight starts with the Tides.
Update: Saunders could pitch Tuesday for the Orioles if Miguel Gonzalez is needed in relief today. Otherwise, he will start Wednesday or Thursday.
Saunders may be put on the “taxi squad” until Monday, when the Orioles will need to make room for him on the roster.
Lindstrom was told about the trade this morning just as he was headed for the field to play catch.
“Surprised, but also kind of excited,” he said. “It’s a little bittersweet, obviously, because the team here is doing so well and I really enjoy being around my teammates, guys in the clubhouse. And I enjoyed competing with them. But I’m looking forward to moving on and starting the next chapter of my career.
“You’ve got to understand this is obviously a business and teams have needs. Some teams are stronger in some areas than others, so you’ve got to take it as it comes. Sometimes, it feels like you’re not wanted, but sometimes that’s not the case. Here in Baltimore, they have a plethora of pitching.
“I enjoyed it here. The fans, the city of Baltimore treated me good. Like I said, especially my teammates. That’s what’s going to be tough to deal with.
“I have a ton of faith in these guys. This is a great team here in Baltimore and I think they’re going to go a long way. I don’t think anybody should be surprised if they end up in first in the end. I just wish them well and I know they’re going to have continued success.”
Lindstrom will see some familiar faces in Arizona.
“I pitched in the NL West last year,” he said. “I know the Dodgers just got better. Some other teams have up-and-coming young stars. But I’m looking forward to playing with those guys. I played with J.J Putz on Team USA and I know Aaron Hill a little bit and I played with Chris Johnson with Houston in 2010.
It seems like I’ve been around the block a little bit now with being traded.”
I’ll post comments from manager Buck Showalter after appearing on “O’s Xtra,” which begins at 1 p.m.
Also, Jason Hammel will throw his simulated game on Monday and, if it goes well, will start Saturday at Single-A Frederick. He could rejoin the Orioles and start on Sept. 6 against the Yankees at Camden Yards.