Detroit Tigers Mailbag: MLB Trade Deadline Edition

PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 26: Trea Turner #7 of the Washington Nationals in action against the Philadelphia Phillies during a game at Citizens Bank Park on July 26, 2021 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies defeated the Nationals 6-5. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 26: Trea Turner #7 of the Washington Nationals in action against the Philadelphia Phillies during a game at Citizens Bank Park on July 26, 2021 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies defeated the Nationals 6-5. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /

Some serious, some not so much. We took our best stab at your questions regarding the Detroit Tigers and the 2021 MLB Trade Deadline

The Detroit Tigers figure to be fairly quiet this MLB Trade Deadline, but the recent winning streak and come-from-behind victories may change the club’s tune about taking this opportunity to acquire talent now for the future.

Injuries have dimmed the chances of trading any of their prime trade candidates: Matthew Boyd, Spencer Turnbull, and Michael Fulmer. Still, the club could choose to move Jonathan Schoop among some others. There has been no shortage of news, so we felt getting a read on the room to see where fans were with the upcoming deadline.

Enough background, though–let’s dive in with your burning questions on all things MLB Trade Deadline:

I love good speculation, so let’s play this out. The Detroit Tigers are known to have a yearning need for a shortstop of the present and future. As Steve mentions here, Correa is an obvious upgrade and his connection with manager AJ Hinch could play a role in where he decides to play in 2021.

There are several reports that the Nationals do not intend to make any long-term deal with Turner, but he did recently test positive for COVID-19, which would complicate any deal. Turner is having a stellar 2021; putting up 4.1 bWAR thus far while slashing .322/.369/.521 with 18 home runs and 21 steals.

With putting together a trade proposal, control is important (although the rental market has proven more robust than initially projected). Trea Turner is under contract for $13 million this season and figures to have a hefty (but still more-than-fair) arbitration number in 2022 before hitting the open market as a 30-year-old, according to Spotrac.

Trading for Turner is not only about acquiring him for the next two seasons, though. It’s about obtaining exclusive rights to make a long-term deal with him before he has the chance to sniff free agency (see the Dodgers trade with Mookie Betts).

With all of those factors in mind, here is the type of proposal I think it would take to land someone like Trea Turner:

Nats will be shopping Max Scherzer and with a trade seeming imminent, Manning would be a potential plug-and-play arm into their rotation as a replacement with some upside yet. Dingler may be the prize here, but if the organization is sold on Jake Rogers and Eric Haase as long-term solutions, Dingler becomes expendable with Cabrera and Reyes as the secondary pieces to round out the trade.

This question was echoed by @NopeJustSports, so I’ll do my best to answer both. Initially, when I heard San Diego Padres’ first baseman Eric Hosmer was available, I had no interest. Hosmer is an aging player earning a lot of money that would muddy down their current roster of up-and-comers.

However, there was a report by Padres beat writer Kevin Acee suggesting that the Padres would be willing to attach one of their top four prospects with Hosmer–a strategy that would not only attract teams but also heighten their return.

According to MLB Pipeline, those prospects are MacKenzie Gore, CJ Abrams, Luis Campusano, and Robert Hassell. Personally, Abrams and Hassell would be the most interesting to me. Abrams is currently hitting .296/.363/.420 as a 20-year-old in Double-A. Hassell, meanwhile, was the Padres first-round selection in 2020 and is currently slashing .307/.403/.455 with 25 steals in A-ball.

Of course, I am open to such an idea, but the Padres have no leverage here and shouldn’t expect anyone back even sniffing the top 100 of any prospect list. San Diego needs to shed payroll to stay under the luxury tax. Hosmer’s salary is essentially buying one of these prospects. I am open to the idea, but I can’t see San Diego jumping on anything I’d personally throw at them–and I am okay with that.

This proposal is reckless with no regard. While I love the aggressive approach, the Detroit Tigers have been extremely conservative and have been public about developing and trusting their own guys. Skubal, Manning, and Mize are all homegrown and I don’t sense any urgency or willingness to move any of them.

That leaves the other guys in the rotation: Matthew Boyd and Spencer Turnbull. Turnbull does not seem to be a likely trade candidate for this deadline as he is likely to be sidelined until (at least) mid-September and maybe longer. That type of uncertainty isn’t what teams pushing to make the playoffs look for.

Lourdes Gurriel Jr is having a solid season for the Toronto Blue Jays but is by no means setting the world on fire: 0.5 bWAR, .263/.291/.419 with 11 home runs across 87 games as the everyday left fielder. Keep in mind, Dunedin and Buffalo are launchpads, too.

He is, however, appealing in that he is signed to a team-friendly deal through 2024. Still–I don’t see any pitcher that’s worth giving up outside of Boyd, and between Boyd’s lack of team control (through 2022) and his injury, I could understand why the Blue Jays would balk.

Maybe someone like Skubal would make sense, but the Detroit Tigers’ need for starting pitching is much larger than its need for outfielders. Grossman is signed through 2022 and Baddoo is on his way to establishing himself as a big-league regular with Derek Hill and Daz Cameron showing flashes themselves.

I’d like to have Gurriel, don’t get me wrong, I’m just not sure the fit is ideal.

Oh, Trevor. As many as you’d like, as long as they are earned.