The Tigers shored up their starting rotation and bullpen by signing Kenny Rogers and Fancisco Cruceta. Both pitchers were signed to one year deals. I don’t have terms yet of either deal.
Rogers we know about, but Cruceta appears to be signed largely on his performance in the Dominican Republic. It sounds similar to last year’s trade for Yorman Bazardo who was impressing in the winter leagues.
Cruceta, 26, spent the 2007 season with Triple A Oklahoma in the Texas Rangers organization. In 25 outings (five starts), he compiled a 3-0 record, 3.02 ERA (65.2IP/22ER) and 70 strikeouts. Cruceta has appeared in 13 games with Cibao in the Dominican Winter League, posting a 1-1 record, 1.08 ERA (16.2IP/2ER) and 25 strikeouts. He is fourth in the league with 25 strikeouts.
“Cruceta has pitched very well this winter in the Dominican Republic,” Dombrowski said. “He is a quality prospect and we expect him to compete for a spot in our bullpen in 2008.”
Cruceta has compiled a 63-49 record and 3.77 ERA (943.2IP/395ER) in 214 appearances (145 starts) during his career at the minor league level. He briefly saw action at the major league level with the Cleveland Indians in 2004 and Seattle Mariners in 2006.
It certainly doesn’t hurt to take a flyer on the guy, and maybe the Tigers have latched on to some cheap talent.
To make room Chris Shelton and Timo Perez were DFA’d. Neither was a surprise as neither were likely to make the Tigers roster next year. Chris Shelton was out of options and was destined to be moved anyways. You often hear of meteoric rises, but meteors are subject to gravitational forces and come crashing to earth as well. That was the Shelton meteor ride.
I’ll have more later