2010 Offseason: The 2011 Rotation

Here’s what I see as set in stone, and what’s on the books for 2011:

1) JV – $12.75M

2) Scherzer – $~1.5M, arb eligible

3) Porcello – $1.536M, club option

4/5) Galarraga – under club control, but note that he’s Super-2 eligible thanks to a rather generously low hurdle this year (2 yrs, 122 days).

Down on the farm the future looks bright, but it might be a few years.  Jacob Turner, Andy Oliver, and Casey Crosby are all expected to be solid rotation guys, but Turner and Crosby are likely two years away.  Remember that Crosby was shut down last July with recurring elbow problems after a few bad starts on a rehab stint in the GCL (he started the year on the DL as well coming off of Tommy John).  2011 will be an important year for Crosby.

Turner split the year between Western Michigan and Lakeland last year, and was dominant in both.  Overall he posted a 3.28 ERA, a 1.12 WHIP and struck out 102 in 115 IPs.  The kid is only 19, and his age is probably the only reason why we wouldn’t see him in 2011.

Oliver had 5 not so flattering starts last year for the big league club, though he did pitch two quality starts before being sent back down, posting a 3.00 ERA.  Oliver spent the rest of the year in Toledo, where he struck out 49 in 53 IPs, and posted a 3.23 ERA.  Oliver turns 23 next month and I see no reason why he wouldn’t have a legitimate shot at the rotation in spring training.

This year’s free agent class includes Bonderman, Carl Pavano, Chris Young, Aaron Harang, Hiroki Kuroda, Javier Vazquez, and Justin Duchscherer.  I really like Kuroda, but I feel that the Tigers’ free agent dollars would be better spent elsewhere.  Anyone think they’ll make Bonderman an offer?

James Shields and Zach Grienke are also rumored to be available.  I don’t think we have the chips for Grienke, and I’m not sure that I’d want James Shields.


  1. Vince in MN

    November 7, 2010 at 10:45 pm

    Bombed-o’s time has run out in Tigerville. Some other team (Pittsburgh?) will surely give him a tumble though.

    Tigers need a LH starter. It won’t be Cliff Lee, who will eventually sign with the Yankees (they have already called) after getting his value to skyrocket into the gazillion $/life range after all the back and forth that will happen with about ten other teams expected to enter the “sweepstakes”. Off the top of my head I can’t think of any potential FA lefties to go after, but there must be some warm body out there. Maybe they’ll re-rush Oliver, or perhaps try to steal Andrew Miller back from FL.

    Reverting back to the infield question(s), they signed Peralta for two years at almsot the same as Inge (who would have guessed!), which “solidifies”* the left side of the infield through 2012. If nothing else, we’ll be “treated”* to the “wizardry”* of Jhonny and the Babe at SS and 3B (as well as at the plate!) for the foreseeable future. Dombo is off and running at the start of the Hot Stove Season – get those ducklings in a row ASAP – good for season ticket sales.

    *quotation marks used in an “ironic”* sense here.

  2. Robert

    November 8, 2010 at 5:07 pm

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Armando again. He is what he is and doesn’t scare me like some of the other 4/5 guys around the league. Porcello is going to have to step up if this team will be in the running. I am not sold on him, yet. As for the 5th man? Might be worth picking up somebody that has years of experience while considering the farm staff is ready to graduate. A seasoned veteran couldn’t pitch much worse and would be seeking a hill to climb. It would cause this tigers fan great pain and suffering to see another multi pitcher 5th man rotation. Go get somebody with decent conditioning.

  3. TSE

    November 9, 2010 at 1:06 am

    I wouldn’t mind cashing in every single pitcher we have to bolster either 2B, SS, C, 3B, or even OF, and leftovers go to getting as many starters as we can that are better than our current starters. Basically 5 starters we have on that list could condense down to 4 or 3 better starters, and every other pitching asset can help us fix the offense and then some. And we have lots of offensive players that can be dumped to to help out and restore our pitching staff. Basically we have about 15 guys that I don’t like that should be traded for less than 15 better players, as few as possible that are as great/young/cheap as possible. Things would come together a lot better and a lot quicker by cutting out age, inefficient dollars being spent, and the lousy hitters. Heck we can just use the Rule 5 draft or call up some minors to replace all the losers we have. We need to clean house bigtime or this team will not be exciting to watch, even if we do flirt with minimal respectable status. That’s just totally not good enough for me. Even if we won the WS next year with this roster due to freak luck, I would still label this team as an abortion because I do not like this current group as it is illogical and unjustifiable to me in basic structure.