Detroit Tigers: 3 Free Agent First Base Options They Could Pursue
By Andy Patton
After spending the first seven years of his big league career with the New York Mets, Duda has now played with four different teams in the last two seasons. In that time, he has mashed 44 home runs and 42 doubles while racking up 114 RBI and slashing .228/.318/.462.
Duda has always posted high strikeout numbers, but he normally cuts that with big power and walk numbers as well. Last season was a down year for the slugger, as he only managed 14 home runs and a career-low 7.5% walk rate, while also posting a career-high 27.8% strikeout rate.
He got off to a slow start with the Royals, but things did pick up for Duda in the second half, a promising development for the free agent. He hit .252/.329/.458 with a 10.1% walk rate and a 108 wRC+ in the second half. If he is able to bring that kind of production to the Motor City, he would be a great candidate to start for the Tigers at first base – and likely get traded at the deadline for the third consecutive year.
Duda would be more expensive than Valbuena, who could probably be had as a minor league free agent. Duda signed for $3.5 million last offseason, although he was coming off a 30 home run year. If the Detroit Tigers can get him for 2-3 million, he would be a very solid investment.