Tigers Among Suitors for Brandon McCarthy

So it’s a slow news day, I guess. The only nugget of Tigers-related banter I could find today involved their rumored interest in former Rangers and White Sox right hander Brandon McCarthy.

McCarthy was once a top-prospect with the White Sox, who shrewdly traded him for lefty John Danks and reliever Nick Masset. That was just after the 2006 season. In the four years since then, McCarthy has been plagued by shoulder injuries. He’s made just 44 major league starts since the trade and logged just 221 innings of 4.68 ERA ball. In 2010, McCarthy was working at Triple-A where he pitched to a 3.36 ERA in 56 innings before suffering a stress fracture in his shoulder.

McCarthy has been pitching well in the Dominican Winter League, according to Jon Paul Morosi, who says that the Tigers are among six clubs with interest in him.

It’s difficult to imagine a scenario where McCarthy would warrant more than a minor league deal, but as we saw with the signing of Al Alburquerque, the competition for his services may make a major league contract necessary to sign him. McCarthy would have two years of club control remaining, so any team that signs him could retain his rights in 2012 as an arbitration-eligible player.

Like I said, it’s a slow news day. I don’t have much of an opinion of this either way. McCarthy showed good command at Oklahoma City before the injury and posted a 4-to-1 strikeout-to-walk rate, so there’s still something there to work with. I wouldn’t be against bringing him in on a minor league deal and see if he can’t compete for the fifth starter’s job in camp.

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