Detroit Tigers: 3 free agent options at starting pitcher

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 14: Pitcher Chris Archer #24 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches in the second inning of the MLB game against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on August 14, 2019 in Anaheim, California. The Angels defeated the Pirates 7-4. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 14: Pitcher Chris Archer #24 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches in the second inning of the MLB game against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on August 14, 2019 in Anaheim, California. The Angels defeated the Pirates 7-4. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 4
Next
Detroit Tigers
Oct 6, 2020;Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports /

LHP Mike Minor

Despite his ERA at 5.48, his xERA was 4.21 and he struck out 62 in 56 innings pitched (25.9% K rate) and like Odorizzi, has been a workhorse, 71 starts since the 2018 season and also made the All-Star team in 2019.

What is a concern about Minor is the hard-hit contact number jumped up in a small sample size at 40.4% and batters did barrel up against him at 10.3% clip. His slider was hit pretty hard.  But looking at his ZiPS projection from FanGraphs for 2021. 153 innings, K per 9 of 8, ERA of 4.53, good enough for a 2.3 WAR.

Minor could be a good backend starter for a year and he is familiar with the AL Central, spending a season in the Royals bullpen in 2017.  The former Vanderbilt product would be a good veteran lefty to throw into the rotation.

Overall, Detroit will need to add two starters to the rotation if they are going to keep some of the younger arms in the minors. Matt Manning could be trying out for a rotation spot now with the good news his forearm issues were minor and Franklin Perez will still need to add some innings after his surgery so it may be some time before we see him starting in the rotation.

I suggested Taijuan Walker and Trevor Bauer (even with his history with AJ Hinch and the Houston Astros) but these three are all bounceback candidates that carry some risk. Detroit may not go after Walker or Bauer, who may get more money elsewhere but unless Detroit can get creative in a trade, they may have to sign what the market has made available.