The middle of the rotation will feature left-handed starter Matt Boyd, who has dealt with inconsistency, but nearly threw a no-hitter. I believe Boyd will pitch over 150 innings in 2018. His career numbers may not be pretty, career FIP of 5.00 and an ERA+ of 80, but there is reason for optimism.
After he revamped his pitching mechanics last year he became the Tiger’s second best pitcher and nearly threw a no-hitter. He has also lowered his HR/9 numbers every year, lowering his FIP.
Matt Boyd was worth 1.3 WAR, according to Baseball Reference, and is still under team control for five more seasons. He will need to bring down his 1.5 WHIP, but what he showed in the second half of 2017, shows me that he is very capable of that. He pitched to a 2.95 ERA in September and he had a WHIP of 1.120.
Boyd actually started 25 games and pitched one game in relief in 2017, so he should have a leg up in the starting rotation competition.
Baseball-Reference’s prediction for Boyd in 2018 is not too far out of the question. 7.9 K/9 is higher than his career numbers, but also very in line with them. 9.5 H/9 seems very likely, but a predicted WHIP of 1.422 seems a little high; even with the 9.5 H/9. Hopefully he pitches around 150-160 innings, and an ERA in mid 4.00s. He will probably give up a hit per inning, but not many will come in the form of a home run.