Yes, Flaherty was signed to a $14 million contract, virtually guarenteeing him a spot in the starting rotation. Yes, the Tigers are banking on a bounce back season. But what if that doesn't happen? What if he doesn't improve?
Just because he'll be gifted a roster spot to start the year, doesn't mean he'll keep it. And I feel quite confident that Flaherty isn't going to last the whole season for one reason or another.
The Tigers probably feel the same way. Why else would they have so many starting pitchers who could get innings for them in 2024? Flaherty, Maeda, Mize, Skubal, and Manning all have a history of injuries. Somebody is going to get hurt.
Flaherty is also just not very good anymore. I've gone more in depth as to why I believe this, but to give you a quick rundown, his fastball has lost all of its life over the past couple years. There's no way you can survive as a big league pitcher without a usable fastball. Just ask Mason Englert.
Flaherty isn't going to survive the season, whether he's DFA'd for poor performance, or he gets hurt. I'll be happy to be wrong on this, but this will likely go down as a waste of a signing.