Tigers Will Push For Athletics’ Gio Gonzalez


Start drooling, Tigers fans. Susan Slusser, staff writer for the San Francisco Chronicle and vice president of the BBWAA, tweeted just after midnight on Wednesday that Dave Dombrowski and the Detroit Tigers “are trying to make a strong push for Gio Gonzalez.” She says that this information comes from three different sources.

A month ago yesterday, John Verburg brought up Gonzalez on this site as a trade target for the Tigers. Though he acknowledged the hefty price tag for the highly coveted left-handed starter, he wrote in a fair amount of depth on why Gonzalez would make a great addition to the Tigers’ staff. If this new report holds any credence, his suggestion no longer seems quite as far-fetched.

Unfortunately, as Verburg (and Slusser) conceded, Billy Beane won’t be shipping him out for a package centered around Andy Dirks or something similar. Realistically, his price tag is somewhere around Jacob Turner plus a young, major-league talent or at least one more upper-level prospect (think Nick Castellanos, Casey Crosby, etc.). Earlier today, Bob Klapisch of The Record reported that the Athletics were asking for Jesus Montero plus one of Manny Banuelos or Dellin Betances from the New York Yankees for Gonzalez. Those three Yankees were all ranked in Baseball America’s pre-2011 Top 100 Prospects list, coming in at #3, #41, and #43 respectively.

Obviously, the Tigers would be hard pressed to match a package that included Banuelos and Betances, let alone Montero. That said, it’s certainly something worth exploring. Turner, as much as I like him as a prospect, is still a prospect. Gonzalez, on the other hand, has proven to be an All-Star caliber talent. He’s also still young at 26 and will be under team control until 2016. A rotation with him, Justin Verlander, and Doug Fister is an appealing idea to say the least.

If nothing else, this is a great topic for discussion in a week of Winter Meetings which have been otherwise quite boring.