The Detroit Tigers still have trades to be made this season. We will post one potential trade per day until the August 31 deadline.
The Detroit Tigers have until August 31 to trade their players on expiring contracts. Thus far three players; Jose Iglesias, Francisco Liriano and Jordan Zimmermann, have passed through waivers. That means they are eligible to be dealt to any team.
With seven days remaining until the deadline, we will be writing up a potential trade daily. Yesterday looked at a potential deal to send Jose Iglesias to the Cardinals. Today we will look at shipping out our other expiring contract, veteran left-hander Francisco Liriano.
Why the Mariners will do it
Jerry DiPoto is not afraid to trade prospects for veterans. Combine that with Seattle’s desperate need for pitching depth, and you have a trade waiting to happen. Seattle’s current rotation is Mike Leake, Marco Gonzales, Wade LeBlanc, Erasmo Ramirez and Felix Hernandez. James Paxton is expected to return fairly soon, which will push King Felix back into the pen.
The team already went out and acquired a LOOGY at the trade deadline, dealing for former Twins lefty Zach Duke. However, Duke has been a disaster, posting a 8.10 ERA with the Mariners. Roenis Elias is another lefty out of the pen, but lefties have torched him to a .316/.349/.447 line.
Point is, the Mariners need rotation depth and they need someone who can get left-handers out in their bullpen, since Duke and Elias aren’t getting it done.
Liriano has not been a great starter this season, with a 4.92 ERA and a 1.52 WHIP in his 20 starts. However, he has held lefties to a .138/.233/.225 line. The Mariners could use Liriano as a situational lefty down the stretch, a role he has played in the past. Plus, if they needed to start him in a pinch, he would be capable of eating up some innings.
He is owed just about $850k on the year, and Seattle could absorb that and toss a few lower level prospects to Detroit. It would give them another piece as they desperately try to hang on in the crowded AL playoff picture.
Why the Tigers will do it
The Tigers have no reason to hold Liriano for the rest of the season. It’s time to let some of their younger guys (like Matt Hall) get a chance to show what they are made of in the show. Plus, they’ll shed some salary and hopefully bring back a prospect or two who could help in the future.
If they can nab left-hander Anthony Misiewicz and first baseman Nick Zammarelli from Seattle, it will be a win.
Misiewicz is a former 18th round pick who has thrown a lot of minor league innings. He has solid durability and a 55-grade curveball, enough to project him as an end of the rotation left-hander. Misiewicz isn’t having the best 2018 season, with a 5.38 ERA at AA. However, his 8.48 K/9 is solid and his numbers are inflated by an abnormally high number of home runs. If his stock is down, the Tigers would be wise to try to pounce on Seattle’s No. 27 ranked prospect.
Zammarelli was an eighth round pick back in 2016. The 24-year-old first baseman is hitting .276/.342/.442 with 10 home runs and five steals at High-A, good for a 112 wRC+. He has hit well across his three minor league seasons, although concerns about his strikeout rate (27.7%) have dimmed his value. Still, Detroit could use another first base prospect, and Zammarelli would make a nice addition to the system.
Teams are almost always in need for left-handed pitching, which hopefully means that the Detroit Tigers will be able to line up a trade partner for Liriano’s services.