Alex Wilson is one of the longest tenured Detroit Tigers, but his advanced age and upcoming free agency make him a prime candidate to be traded either this winter or in July.
Wilson finished 2018 with a tidy 3.36 ERA and 1.05 WHIP, some of the best marks of his career. Masked behind those solid numbers are an ugly 4.28 FIP, a 6.28 K/9 and a .227 BABIP which spells trouble for the future.
Wilson has never been a high strikeout guy. He instead relies on inducing soft contact and plenty of ground balls, things he was once again excellent at last season. That makes him rather volatile though, and Detroit would be wise to capitalize on his trade value while he still has some.
Wilson should demand attention from bullpen-needy teams, although I suspect Detroit won’t get much more than a low-level prospect in return. Milwaukee, St. Louis, the Yankees, Phillies and Braves all strike me as teams who may check in on Wilson.
If Detroit can get a teenage position prospect in return, that gives them another piece to try to develop while also opening up a roster spot for a young arm like Sandy Baez, Victor Alcantara or Zac Reininger to get a chance to pitch all season in the Motor City.
The Tigers have other pieces they could shop, including Shane Greene, Nicholas Castellanos, James McCann and Jordan Zimmermann, but ultimately the three names above represent the best chance for Detroit to sell-high on assets that won’t be around for the rebuild – while giving them prospects that potentially could be.