The Detroit Tigers came into the 2023 trade deadline with a prime opportunity to cash in on what was a very friendly trade market for sellers. Not only were the Tigers one of the few teams that were actually in a position to sell, but they also had several players in the shallow pitching market like Eduardo Rodriguez and Michael Lorenzen that were available.
The biggest news for the Tigers was that they did not trade Eduardo, but it wasn't for lack of trying. The Tigers had a deal in place with the Dodgers, but Rodriguez had LA on his limited no-trade list and he ultimately decided to nix the deal with the Dodgers citing family reasons.
Here's how the experts graded the Detroit Tigers at the trade deadline
To get a better sense of how Detroit did at the deadline, let's take a look at what the experts across the media-verse had to say. To be clear, this is not going to be an exhaustive list of every trade deadline grading piece out there because, well, there are too many of them to do that. However, this should give a pretty nice sample of what some pretty smart people are saying which should be instructive.
One last note before the grades: each outlet does things differently as some only grade individual moves while others gave teams overall grades. This is just going to note whatever method they chose instead of trying to standardize everything after the fact.
ESPN went with grades for individual moves at the deadline and obviously the only move they assigned a grade to was the Michael Lorenzen trade. For the Tigers' end of the deal, they got an A- for their ability to trade Lorenzen (a pure rental) for a guy in Hao-Yu Lee who has some legitimate upside as a well-rounded offensive threat.
Changing gears, Jim Bowden over at the The Athletic gave grades to the teams ($) for their overall efforts at the trade deadline. The Tigers got a C from Bowden as he noted that while the return for Lorenzen was nice, Detroit's inability to find another home for Rodriguez after the Dodgers' deal fell through and not trading any of their relievers were clear misses.
The Sporting News
The fine folks over at The Sporting News went with an individual move approach and gave the Tigers an A for the move. They noted that getting the Phillies' #5 prospect for less than half a season of Lorenzen was a nice return especially given that Lorenzen is approaching a career high for innings pitched in a season.
CBS Sports went back to grading each team overall at the deadline and Detroit yet again got a C. The Lorenzen move was noted as a nice one, but not trading any relievers was again noted as a knock against Detroit. The Rodriguez deal falling through was noted as well which cost Detroit another opportunity to add to their farm system.
Finally, we come to Bleacher Report who also graded each individual trade and they gave the Lorenzen trade a B for the Tigers' end of the deal. BR was not nearly as high as other outlets on Lee. However, it did also seem like they thought that Detroit could have landed a blue chip prospect for Lorenzen which always seemed unlikely given that he is a rental with limited upside.