Phillies: Which free agent starting pitcher best fits the rebuild?

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 18: Jake Arrieta
CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 18: Jake Arrieta /
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ARLINGTON, TX – MAY 16: Yu Darvish
ARLINGTON, TX – MAY 16: Yu Darvish /

Among the top starting pitchers on the free agent market Yu Darvish has little to no connection to the Phillies. Ken Rosenthal reported in January the organization checked in on him, but little has been heard of since. He’s expected to earn over $20 million annually, but should a team give into that number?

The 31-year-old Japanese All-Star had three outstanding seasons in Texas that nearly secured him a Rookie of the Year and Cy Young award. Elbow surgery cost him the entire 2015 season and potentially some of the magic that made Darvish the star he was.

Darvish is an established veteran pitcher who has historically struggled in the postseason. That won’t matter as much to Philadelphia with their current status, and it may, in fact, help them if contenders completely shun Darvish. There hasn’t been much said of Darvish being a leader in the clubhouse or a mentor to younger pitchers, which doesn’t fit the Phillies model.

Between the injuries and financial demands, it doesn’t appear likely the Phillies add Darvish this offseason. If push comes to shove and Darvish is available in late March, the Phillies could offer him a one-year deal with an option for an astronomical amount of money.