The Arizona Diamondbacks were working to obtain the services of James Shields, reports Buster Olney. though the signing of free agent Brandon McCarthy put an end to that. A deal for Shields, currently under contract to the Tampa Bay Rays, would likely have required a younger pitcher in exchange.
Sheilds started 33 games for the Rays in 2012, going 15-10 with a 3.52 ERA while holding opponents to a .239 batting average. He has a lifetime average of 7.7 strikeouts and 2.1 walks per nine innings. In comparison, McCarthy started 18 games for the Oakland Athletics in 2012 before a vicious and fluke head injury. He went 8-6 with a 3.24 ERA and a .267 batting average for opponents. Over the course of his seven year career he has averaged 6.1 strikeouts and 2.6 walks per nine innings.
McCarthy's two-year deal is for a total of $15.5 million, but much of that is on the back end. The deal is pending a physical, so things are not quite completely settled with Arizona.