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Tigers Potential Trade Partner: Milwaukee Brewers


There are a multitude of ideas being thrown out there around the internet concerning Rick Porcello, mainly trade scenarios of course. I’ve seen San Diego as a mentioned destination, but unless the Tigers are going to unload Porcello for two or three prospects, the Padres don’t make a lot of sense. Their major league team doesn’t necessarily have guys that are going to contribute to the Tigers winning now. Jose Guzman and a reliever just doesn’t seem like enough for a mid rotation starter. Pittsburgh was considered a destination as well, mainly because people believed Joel Hanrahanwas an option for the Tigers. Well Hanrahan got traded to Boston, and again, acquiring relievers for a starter doesn’t seem like much value.

Sep 26, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Milwaukee Brewers shortstop Jeff Bianchi (14) is congratulated by second baseman Rickie Weeks (23) after scoring during the eighth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park. The Brewers defeated the Reds 8-1. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-USA TODAY Sports

Of course there are plenty in the camp that want to hold on to Porcello. Typically, teams don’t make it through a season without needing a six or even seventh starter at some point. Drew Smyly is a candidate to be moved as well, and it could be argued very easily that he might be the one that would bring more back to the Tigers in a deal.

Generally, it’s perceived that the Tigers have an extra starter, whether that be Porcello or Smyly. I decided to approach this issue in another way instead of throwing out specific guys in trade scenarios. I think it makes more sense to look at teams that potentially need starting pitching. The Milwaukee Brewers fit that bill.

Milwaukee came pretty close to making the playoffs last year, mostly on the strength of their offense. Ryan Braun, Aramis Ramirez and Corey Hart smashed the baseball all around Miller Park and plenty of other stadiums as well. Their pitching however was another story. Their bullpen was atrocious, and while their starting pitching was better, there are clearly some question marks heading into 2013.

Yovani Gallardo is clearly the Brewers number one. After that, the rotation is a collection of question marks. Chris Narveson is returning from injury. Mike Fiers‘ stuff kind of falls short, but he looks like a legitimate option. Marco Estrada is probably another lock. The other two spots are up for grabs, and either Porcello or Smyly would likely be locks on that team to be in the rotation.

The Brewers clearly have a need for a starter, it just depends on what the Tigers would be looking for in return. Milwaukee’s farm system is one of the weaker systems in all of baseball, so there isn’t a lot of help going to come from that. Inevitably, what the Tigers could potentially use is 2nd baseman Rickie Weeks or OF Corey Hart. Of course in Hart’s case, it would take more than just the one middle rotation starter. Hart has been a productive OF for three straight years. Rickie Weeks on the other hand is coming off of a down year, and it would depend on whether or not the Tigers believe he could return to pre-2012 form.

If the Brewers call on Porcello or Smyly (and they should), the Tigers of course will listen. Whether or not something occurs, we shall see. The Brewers appear to be somewhat of a fit though.