Kevin Jepsen, Minnesota Twins
While the Twins may choose to hang on to Abad, the team may be more willing to deal fellow reliever Kevin Jepsen based on this year’s numbers.
Functioning as a late-inning arm for the Twins, Jepsen has seven saves on the year, but has an unfortunate 5.46 ERA in 28 innings pitched. His FIP isn’t much better at 5.59. These stats could factor into Minnesota dealing him, and Detroit should take a look.
Despite the high ERA and FIP, the reliever has been victimized by a .356 BABIP, so perhaps a change of scenery will do the trick for him.
Jepsen does have a solid track record. He’s owns a 3.76 career ERA, and posted a 2.47 number in 134.2 innings pitched from 2014 to 2015. During that same span, he also struck out 134 batters.
The Tigers could use Mike Aviles as a makeweight in terms of offsetting some of the salary. General manager Al Avila could also potentially send a minor prospect to the Twins in the same way he sent a mid-level prospect to Atlanta and Milwaukee in respective deals for Cameron Maybin and Francisco Rodriguez.
With Detroit, Jepsen would fill a similar roll to the one that Abad would potentially fill—another seventh inning option to bridge the gap to K-Rod.