Detroit Tigers: Matthew Boyd hoping to return to his Tiger-self

Detroit Tigers pitcher Matthew Boyd throws a bullpen session during practice during spring training.
Detroit Tigers pitcher Matthew Boyd throws a bullpen session during practice during spring training. / Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK

Detroit Tigers starter Matthew Boyd is hoping for a bounce back year.

To the chagrin of plenty this off-seasonTo, the Detroit Tigers went out and signed Matthew Boyd to a one-year, $10 million contract. The left-handed starter has been away from the Tigers since the 2021 season when he was let walk during free agency.

The Detroit Tigers brought back Boyd with the hope that he can rebound and return to the pitcher he was when he was still with the Tigers. After all, he was the team's de facto ace for a while and pitched quite well at times.

Al Avila never pulled the trigger on a trade with the southpaw, but he was undoubtedly a trade deadline rumor mill during a couple of years of his tenure. There has to be hope that Boyd can get back to the level he was at before departing the organization.

After leaving the Tigers organization, it was Scott Harris and the San Francisco Giants who took a flier on Boyd and brought him into the organization. Boyd had to undergo flexor tendon surgery, which is the same procedure that pitcher Tarik Skubal is recovering from right now. Harris went and signed Boyd, giving him his stamp of approval for the 2023 season.

It took time, but Boyd was able to get back on the mound. His time with the Giants turned into a dead end, and he was traded to the Seattle Mariners, where he was able to pitch in the bullpen and log 13.1 innings pitched in 2022. He allowed two runs and punched out 13 opposing hitters.

The southpaw is back and healthy for the 2023 season with the Tigers organization. He made his first start of the spring, where he pitched in two innings. He allowed a run by way of a solo shot from Adley Rutschman. Boyd walked just one and punched out four opposing hitters over his first outing of 2023 Spring Training.

On top of that, he used PitchCom as a pitcher for the first time, something that has begun to debut across the league to let starters call their own game or at least call a pitch when they really want to throw something.

Boyd will likely slot into the front of the rotation as a no.2 or no.3 option. There's hope that he can be the same pitcher he was in years past, like in 2021 before his injury, where he managed a 3.89 ERA and 1.27 WHIP over 78.2 innings pitched.

The kryptonite for Boyd that he is looking to avoid is falling off in the second half. Boyd has done an excellent job going out and performing exceptionally well to start the year, but things fall off a bit in the second half of the season.

For the Tigers, the hope is that Boyd can go out and snowball some quality starts together and be a quality option in the Tigers rotation, and possibly even trade bait if he does get off to a hot start.

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