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The Detroit Tigers have reportedly lost out on outfielder Reed Johnson, as he appears to be on his way to the Atlanta Braves. The Tigers made an offer to Chicago for Johnson on Monday, via ESPN's Bruce Levine, but it was not enough.
It's unclear what exactly the Tigers offered the Cubs for Johnson, but he would have filled their need for a right-handed bat rather nicely. They were previously linked to Scott Hairston and Carlos Quentin.
Before being traded, Johnson started the Cubs game against Pittsburgh before being pulled in the fifth inning.
Now it's up to Detroit to find another target.
Even though assistant general manager Al Avila announced to the media that his team was likely finished making deals, FOX Sports' Jon Morosi reported on Friday that the Tigers are interested in the services of New York Mets outfielder Scott Hairston:
The 32-year-old Hairston has bounced around during his nine-year major league career, but appears to have found a solid niche with the Mets this season. Though he's hitting a respectable .259 through 83 games with a less-than-stellar .300 on-base percentage, Hairston has tallied 12 home runs, 39 RBI and five stolen bases, which aren't exactly too shabby when extrapolated over a 162-game campaign.
But even as the Tigers' interest in Hairston probably says a lot more about other players on Detroit's roster than Hairston himself (can Quintin Berry keep it up? is Andy Dirks not making enough progress?), Adam Rubin of ESPN.com revealed that the two sides are still unlikely to swing a deal:
The conversation between Tigers and Mets was about Scott Hairston. As I mentioned, unlikely something materializes.— Adam Rubin (@AdamRubinESPN) July 27, 2012
Considering how the Tigers just finished shipping away a couple of prospects in the Omar Infante-Anibal Sanchez trade, it's hard to imagine Dave Dombrowski aggressively going after a guy like Hairston armed with player of two from his farm system.
And aside from a .308 batting average against left-handed pitchers this season, Hairston could struggle to see the lineup most games in the outfield if he came to Detroit, and would have to contend with Delmon Young on a day-to-day basis for the designated hitter spot. Hairston is an intriguing player, to be sure, but one that the Tigers probably should avoid giving too much for at this point.
According to Tigers assistant GM Al Avila, that might be the last that we hear of the team in the trade market before the deadline hits. MLive.com reported his quotes:
"We're pretty much done," Avila told MLB Network Radio. "Our pitching staff is pretty much set as far as starters and relievers. And, our starting everyday lineup is pretty much set."
There are still some potential moves to be made, mainly in the middle infield where the Tigers have been linked with several different players. There will probably not be any big name moves though, with the Tigers currently tied for first place in the AL Central and, as Avila says, mostly set in terms of their starting lineup and pitching rotation.
Now that the Detroit Tigers have plugged a pair of holes at both second base and in the starting rotation with Monday's Jacob Turner deal, manager Jim Leyland can truly begin to tweak his batting order heading into the final months of the season. And for the foreseeable future anyway, Leyland told MLive.com's Chris Iott that he plans to use Infante in a varied spot in the order depending on the opposing pitcher:
A .277 hitter against righties and .273 against lefties for his career, Infante was used primarily in the No. 2 spot with the Marlins this year (121 at-bats), and batted ninth just four times with his old club this season. During his All-Star campaign with the Braves in 2010, however, he hit .305 from the leadoff spot and .321 overall, and was dominant when placed virtually anywhere in the order.
Though he isn't quite the same type of table-setter or base-stealer that he once was (he swiped 13 bases with Detroit in '04), Infante's ability to consistently make contact from the plate still make him an attractive option for the top of the order against any pitcher. His projected role seems to fit nicely into Detroit's current plans now, but it remains to be seen how long he'll stick in these two spots in the lineup (ninth especially).
Anxious to begin the next portion of his baseball career in Detroit, new Tigers pitcher Anibal Sanchez is expected to take the mound for the first time with his new team this Saturday according to MLive.com's Chris Iott:
Anibal Sanchez to start Saturday for the Tigers. #Tigers— Chris Iott (@Chris_Iott) July 24, 2012
One piece of Dave Dombrowski's two-man haul from Miami for a deal that included 21-year-old prospect Jacob Turner on Monday, Sanchez will offer the Tigers a right-hander innings-eater who is capable of striking out double-digit batters in any given start. Though Sanchez has never pitched full-time in the American League in his career, he has been one of the most consistent National League starters over the last few seasons when healthy and sports a rather impressive 3.75 career earned-run average.
By getting the ball for Saturday's game, Sanchez will then be in line to start game one of Detroit's three-game homestand with the Cleveland Indians at Comerica Park, marking his first start in front of home fans.
Pitcher Anibal Sanchez met with media in Miami to discuss the trade that sent him and Omaf Infante from the Marlins to the Detroit Tigers on Monday in exchange for Jacob Turner, Rob Brantly and Brian Flynn.
Sanchez is appreciative of the Marlins organization and excited about coming to Detroit, via mlive.com:
"It's like a new era for me. It's a new opportunity with a new team," Sanchez said. "I'm so glad to be part of the Marlins for a while. I don't have any problem with them. (The Marlins) had a lot of patience with me. I had a lot of injuries for a while. They trusted me, and that's really important."
Video of the scrum can be found on MLB.com. Sanchez could make his first start for the Tigers as soon as Saturday in Toronto.
The Tigers and Marlins have completed a trade that will send Omar Infante and Anibal Sanchez to Detroit in exchange for Jacob Turner, Rob Brantly and Brian Flynn.
With more than just a handful of impact pitchers available on the trade market this year, the Detroit Tigers are scrambling to evaluate as many quality arms as possible before the July 31st trade deadline. Linked to some of the biggest names available already, FOX Sports' Jon Morosi is reporting that Detroit scouts were in attendance in Pittsburgh on Sunday to watch Marlins right-hander Anibal Sanchez:
Sanchez ended up tossing seven innings of three-run ball with eight strikeouts on Sunday to drop his 2012 earned-run average down to 3.94. A 28-year-old hurler with an elite arsenal on the mound, Sanchez has been one of the better strikeout artists in the National league over the last two and a half seasons, and could be a huge upgrade to the Tigers' rotation for the right price.
Also on Detroit's radar throughout the weekend was well-known , who fanned 10 batters in a brilliant start on Friday with Tigers scouts watching on. Shields has been rumored to be on the block for a number of seasons now despite posting strong numbers across the board, and is drawing interest from a number of clubs including the starter James ShieldsNew York Yankees, Boston Red Sox and San Francisco Giants.
Although Shields would command a slightly higher price tag than Sanchez, aside from the fact that the Rays don't appear to be shopping him, the 30-year-old righty is on the verge of winning 11 games for the sixth consecutive season and could be a serious star in Detroit behind Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer. With groundball pitchers like Doug Fister and Rick Porcello around to fill out the bottom of the rotation at the very least, the Tigers could be tempted to keep their stable of young arms in the minors and add a proven talent like Shields with a big splash.
As the trade deadline nears, the Detroit Tigers' pursuit of middle infielders has only become more persistent as the organization looks to keep tabs on first place in the American League Central. And according to a report by FSN Arizona's Jack MaGruder, the Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks have discussed a deal that would include both Stephen Drew and Jhonny Peralta in a possible swap.
MaGruder goes on to mention how the deal would seem to benefit both teams considering the fact that Peralta is more of a natural third baseman and can't play the hot corner in Detroit, but also points out that one of his two main sources indicated that the deal was essentially a "long shot."
Although Detroit has scouted a number of players at both shortstop and second base over the last few weeks, the Diamondbacks seem to be viable trading partners due to the fact that both Ryan Roberts and Drew each appear to be readily available for a respectable price. While it may be hard to envision the Tigers prying both players away in a deal that including only Peralta and a non-major league player, it's likely that Drew is somewhere near the top of Dave Dombrowski's growing list of middle infield targets.
Hot on the trail of a number of middle infielders at the moment, the Detroit Tigers are reportedly trying quite hard to acquire Chicago Cubs second baseman Darwin Barney according to ESPN.com's Jim Bowden ($).
The Tigers made an inquiry about Barney several weeks ago, so it's clear that the two teams are at the very least trying to work something out after it appeared things had broken down. Barney is still just 26 years old and remains under contract through the 2016 campaign, and would offer both an offensive and defensive upgrade for the Tigers if he came to Motown.
Although he owns a rather pedestrian .309 on-base percentage for his career, Barney looks to be slowly developing a bit of power from the plate, and has increased his slugging percentage in each of his three big league seasons. While he might not offer the same time of impact right now as a player like Marco Scutaro or Omar Infante likely would, Barney could still be a valuable deadline addition if the price is right for general manager Dave Dombrowski.
While Detroit Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski continues to evaluate every viable middle infielder on the trade market with the deadline drawing near, USA Today's Bob Nightengale is reporting that Dombrowski and the Miami Marlins are already in discussions about infielder Omar Infante:
Infante hit .253 over six seasons with the Tigers from 2002-07, but immediately morphed into a .300 hitter upon switching over to the National League with the Braves and Marlins. An All-Star appearance marked the highlight of his career in the summer of 2010, and after being traded the following year, helped to pave the way for him to sign a two-year, $8 million extension with the Marlins last fall.
Viewed unanimously as a Gold Glove-caliber second baseman with an above average bat, Infante led the majors in assists last season but still remains an undervalued commodity in baseball circles. Knowing the friendly relationship that Dombrowski has had with the Marlins' organization over the years, it might not be out of the realm of possibilities to see Infante in a Tigers' uniform soon.
For more trade rumors involving the Tigers, stay right here with this StoryStream. For more on the Tigers, check out Bless You Boys. And for more MLB news and analysis, make sure to visit Baseball Nation.
The eyesore that was Jacob Turner's start on Tuesday certainly didn't accomplish very much, but it did answer some pressing questions for the Detroit Tigers' organization heading into the trade deadline. And after being tied to some of the biggest names on the market last week, FOX Sports' Jon Morosi is reporting that the Tigers are among the teams scouting Padres left-hander Clayton Richard on Wednesday out in San Diego:
A quarterback who signed with the Michigan Wolverines out of high school and was eventually beat out by star freshman Chad Henne, Richard switched to baseball soon thereafter and never once looked back. A 6-foot-5 lefty who can eat up innings with the best the sport has to offer, Richard is 6-10 with a 3.83 ERA this year for the Padres. At just 28 years old with such a late start career-wise as a baseball player, it's entirely plausible that the former Wolverine is just now entering the prime of his career and could be an excellent deadline acquisition.
One of the few issues that the Detroit Tigers have right now is a somewhat thin starting pitching staff, especially lacking in left handed hurlers. They've been rumored to be looking for someone, along with two of their division rivals, Cleveland and Chicago. Ryan Dempster has been a name thrown around quite a lot, but there are other targets as well for Detroit.
FOX Sports' Jon Paul Morosi suggested in a Wednesday article that the Tigers -- along with the other two teams looking for starters in the AL Central -- could be interested in picking up Francisco Liriano from the Minnesota Twins to solve that problem.
Liriano returned to the Twins’ rotation May 30 after a brief spell in the bullpen; his 2.83 ERA since then is among the top 15 for major-league starters during that span, according to STATS LLC. Liriano, 28, would have particular appeal to the Tigers and Indians, who lack a left-handed starter in their rotations. (The White Sox have two, Sale and Quintana.)
Liriano hasn't had a great season overall -- in fact, he hasn't been a top tier pitcher since his solid rookie campaign in 2006 -- but tends to have great flashes of brilliance, especially in the past six games. So far on the season he has gone 3-8 but has had some good moments on the last place Twins. His last start in particular saw him strike out 15 Athletics players but still get tagged with the loss.
With the powerful Tigers offense behind him, he could have a shot at getting back on track. There's no actual reports that the Tigers are looking at him out yet, but it would certainly make an intriguing match.
Drew, a shortstop, missed three months this season recovering from a gruesome broken ankle he sustained last summer. In his last full season, in 2010, Drew played 151 games and hit .278 with a .352 on-base percentage. He had 15 home runs that year, second among National League shortstops behind only Troy Tulowitzki.
In 13 games this season, Drew, 29, is hitting .233.
Roberts, a utility player, has appeared in 76 games this season at second base and third base. The 31-year-old is hitting .239 with a .287 OBP.
From the Fox Sports article:
It's not clear how advanced the talks are, but sources say there has been dialogue between the clubs on scenarios involving one or both players.
Drew, 29, has played exclusively shortstop in the major leagues. Since he's coming off a leg injury, it's doubtful the Tigers would expect him to switch positions if he is sent to Detroit. So, the Tigers' assessment of whether Drew can handle the rigors of shortstop will be key to their willingness to trade for him. Neither Drew nor Jhonny Peralta (Detroit's current shortstop) is regarded as an elite defender.
The article goes on to say that the Diamondbacks could ask for Peralta in return, partly because his contract has a $6 million club option for 2013. On the season, Peralta is hitting .267 with a .344 OBP in 81 games.
There were a handful of scouts at Coors Field to watch game three of the series between the Colorado Rockies and the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday, all there to check out trade candidates for their teams. Most of those scouts were there to look at Cole Hamels from the Phillies, who has been rumored for a while to be on the trade block.
Scutero has been moderately good at the plate -- though less so defensively with his glove -- this season for the dismal Rockies, hitting .275/.325/.370 with four home runs. The Tigers would likely not have to give up too much in a potential trade for the second baseman.
For more trade rumors involving the Tigers, stay right here with this StoryStream. For more Tigers coverage, be sure to visit Bless You Boys. And for more MLB news and analysis, check out Baseball Nation.
After initially looking hard at acquiring Chicago Cubs right-hander Matt Garza, the Detroit Tigers are reportedly one of 10 teams interested in the services of Garza's teammate Ryan Dempster according to ESPN Chicago.
The 35-year-old strikeout artist is currently riding one of the most impressive pitching streaks fathomable, reeling off five consecutive starts without yielding a single earned run. Dempster last allowed a baserunner to cross home plate back on May 30, which is quite a remarkable feat any way you slice it.
Though last year's 10-14 campaign that featured an abysmal 4.80 ERA seemed to indicate that Dempster was on the downside of his career, it's hard to ignore with the numbers he's put forth as of late. His 1.02 WHIP this season is quite literally eye-popping when you consider that he's never posted a number lower than 1.21 since he broke into the bigs in 1998.
The issue for the Tigers, though, might be the cost associated with dealing for an aging pitcher that might never have more trade value than he has right now. The veteran hurler's hot streak has been absolutely ideal for the Cubs, who will surely haul in much more talent now than they would have if they swung a deal for him two months ago.
For more trade rumors involving the Tigers, stay right here with this StoryStream. For more Tigers coverage, be sure to visit Bless You Boys. And for more MLB news and analysis, check out Baseball Nation.
Now that the first half of the baseball season has already spilled over into July, trade talks and non-stop rumors are beginning to take center stage for the nation's pastime. According to FOXSports.com's Jon Morosi, the Detroit Tigers have been somewhat active as of late, and even made an inquiry about Chicago Cubs second baseman Darwin Barney a few weeks ago.
Aside from the fact that the Cubs don't appear willing to deal a young, well-rounded middle infield prospect like Barney at the moment, it's good to see Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski actively trying to upgrade the largely-ignored second base position. Middle infield spots remain Detroit's biggest weakness in the batting order on a nightly basis, and there doesn't appear to be much coming down the pipeline anytime soon.
So while Chicago's budding second baseman might not be the guy Detroit ends up with, he is a fair representation of what Dombrowski is likely seeking out, meaning that Tigers fans have every reason to be optimistic as we barrel towards the trade deadline.
Morosi stated that the Cubs recently scouted the Tigers' Double-A affiliate, the Erie SeaWolves, which is considered to be a prospect-heavy club. At this time, though, talks have not yet become serious, but there is clearly an interest.
However, the Tigers aren't the only team to be reportedly kicking the tires on Garza.
According to Morosi, the Arizona Diamondbacks, Boston Red Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians and St. Louis Cardinals are also in the mix to acquire the 28-year old, right-handed starting pitcher.
Garza is 4-7 with a 4.32 earned-run average over 93.2 innings pitched in 16 starts with the Cubs this season.
There's already been a few rumors regarding the Detroit Tigers and their need for another bat. Some have talked about Carlos Quentin, while others have mentioned the resurgent Jim Thome. That being said, it doesn't look like a deal for Thome is necessarily in the works. According to the Detroit Free Press, there doesn't seem to be any indication the Tigers have expressed any interest:
But if Thome is going to return to the American League, it doesn't appear it will be with the Detroit Tigers. When Thome was in the midst of his hot streak last week, there wasn't any indication the Tigers were interested in obtaining their longtime tormentor.
As noted in the piece, the Tigers have said they're on the lookout for right-handed hitting, and Thome is a lefty. On top of that, Thome is a designated hitter, which means the Tigers would have to get rid of somebody who can play defense to make room for him.
But he is on an impressive run. He played nine games at DH in interleague play and drove in 14 runs and hit four homeruns. Under National League rules, Thome is 2-for-20 with no runs batted in. You can't ignore numbers like that, and if nothing pans out for the Tigers, they could fall back on being interested in Thome, but as it stands now, there's reportedly no interest from their side.
The Detroit Tigers have played well in the last week, and the hope is that this recent uptick in wins will continue. If it does and the Tigers are in the race for a second straight AL Central title come July, you can bet they will be on the lookout for potential trades to improve their roster. Last year, a deadline move to acquire Doug Fister turned out to have a huge positive impact, and something like that this year with their hitting or bullpen would be nice, to say the least.
The interesting dynamic for the Tigers this year is that they could acquire players later in the summer that improve their team without giving anything up. How? Well, they'd be acquiring them from the disabled list. Guys like Victor Martinez and Al Alburquerque have been out all season, but if they were able to return this summer, the Tigers would be getting hitting and bullpen help without even making any trades. This, according to Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski, could factor into whether or not they do make any actual deals.
"The possibility (of Martinez returning) exists in a strong enough fashion that you have to give it some thought, but I don’t really know where that stands – and I don’t know that we will know until July," Dombrowski said in an interview Sunday morning. "We may get Martinez and (Al) Alburquerque back. Those would be two pretty good acquisitions, and our bullpen actually has pitched pretty well in recent times."
The latest update on Martinez came earlier this month and stated that he is planning to have an MRI on June 28. The Tigers should get a better idea of if Martinez will be able to return this season following that MRI. It probably won't provide a concrete answer about a possible return, but if the Tigers are given an indication that it's likely Martinez will be able to play come August or September, then making a trade to acquire somebody like Carlos Quentin might not be necessary.
Reports are pretty flimsy at this point, but the Detroit Tigers are reportedly interested in San Diego Padres outfielder Carlos Quentin.