5 Reasons Why the Detroit Tigers Shouldn’t Trade for a Reliever
Much of the talk surrounding the Detroit Tigers in the early going has revolved around their struggling bullpen. Their relievers have posted an ERA of 4.19 which ranks 20th in the MLB. Tigers’ relievers have issued 46 walks this year which is the third highest total in the majors. However, there are five reasons--players they already have that work--why this team should not trade for a new reliever.
The Tigers were so desperate to find a closer they turned to Jose Valverde; the man that almost single-handedly cost them multiple playoff games and fell out of favor with essentially every Tigers’ fan.
Acquiring a reliever could cost the Tigers one or two of their most promising prospects. Nick Castellanos and Avisail Garcia are the top position players in the Tigers’ farm system, and could see regular playing time in the big leagues very soon.
Garcia was called up at the end of the 2012 season to join the team for the playoffs, and his skill set was evident as he produced a few clutch hits in the postseason. Heck, they even gave him the nickname “Little Miggy” for crying out loud.
Castellanos is learning to play in the outfield due to the fact that his old position is occupied by the reigning MVP and triple-crown winner, Miguel Cabrera. Barring an injury, he likely won’t be playing third base for the Tigers any time soon.
Mortgaging their future in a knee-jerk reaction to save the present could cost the Tigers games down the road. After signing Justin Verlander to a hefty extension and having recently given other Tigers long-term deals, it is clear they expect to be competitive for at least the next few years with their current team.
David Fouty is a writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @davefouty, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.
Luke Putkonen was impressive in his first appearance of the season for the Tigers, earning the win by pitching 2.1 innings and allowing only one base runner. Most importantly, he had command of all his pitches and seemed confident in his ability to get the job done.
Bruce Rondon has struggled in his first few appearances with the Tigers, but his stuff is not in question. His fastball touches triple-digits almost every time he throws it, which is a coveted attribute for a closer. Hopefully, he can figure out how to hit the strike zone consistently.
Avisail Garcia has already played in some big games for the Tigers. He was called up on Sept. 1 of last year and was a vital part of the Tigers' postseason offense. He tallied four RBI in the 2012 postseason, including some important late-game scenarios. Not to mention, he's been dubbed "Little Miggy" by a few teammates, which is very, very high praise.
Drew Smyly is looking like one of the most versatile relievers in the game so far this year. Whether Jim Leyland calls on him to get an out or two, or pitch five innings of long relief, Smyly has stepped up to the task.
Players like Nick Castellanos don't come around all that often, and the Tigers would be foolish to let him go for temporary bullpen help. Castellanos will be a major leaguer soon enough, and Tigers' fans will be happy when they see what he can bring to the table.