Morosi lists the financials as one year and $3 million with more possible through incentives. This contract would be a larger investment than I expected the Tigers to make. I had assumed they had been trying to lure Penny with a minor league contract. By giving him a major league deal, Penny instantly becomes the favorite to secure the final rotation spot for the Tigers.
The Tigers have an elite one-two punch with Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer at the top of the rotation. Right hander Rick Porcello is set to be the third starter and southpaw Phil Coke is converting from his relief role to that of a starting pitcher this season. Armando Galarraga, arguably the club’s third-best starter last year, appears to be the odd man out should Penny join the club.
Penny made just nine starts last year before being shut down with a back injury. He was 3-4 with a 3.23 ERA for the Cardinals in 2010. The two-time all-star worked 55.2 innings for St. Louis and posted a 1.293 WHIP and 3.89 K/BB ratio, the best mark of his 11 year career.