Brandon Lyon updates

The Tigers presumably want to bring Brandon Lyon back. Brandon Lyon would like a multi-year deal. I don’t think these things are mutually exclusive, but Lyon has to make a decision tonight on whether or not to accept arbitration.

Lyon will likely receive more than a one year contract from somewhere so it’s little surprise that Lyon is expected to turn down the arbitration offer. Of course one his early suitors, the Philadelphia Phillies are now believed to be out of the running because they deem him too expensive.

Tigers interested in Kevin Gregg

Tim Brown from Yahoo Sports tweets that the Tigers are one of 4 teams interested in former demoted Cubs closer Kevin Gregg. Via @mlbtraderumors it appears a fifth team, the Orioles, are in the mix as well.

Gregg saw improvements in his strikeout rates and walk rates but was undone by the 13 homers he allowed. Opposing hitters took him deep on 15.7% of the fly balls he allowed so there is some reason to believe he’d bounce back from that rate. With 5 teams interested though it doesn’t sound like it would net anyone much of a discount.

Gregg has pitched for the Cubs, Marlins, and Angels and he made $4.2 million in 2009.

A lot of the reliever speculation for the Tigers will probably become clearer after tonight when Fernando Rodney and Brandon Lyon have to make their decisions about accepting arbitration.

Image credit: ohad* on flickr

Tigers interested in George Sherrill?

For all the talk of the Tigers being broke, the Dodgers might be in a tougher situation. They didn’t offer any of their players arbitration and now they are looking to move players, including reliever George Sherrill.

Matthew Pouilot notes that the Tigers might be a fit for a deal where Sherrill and a prospect head to Detroit in exchange for Edwin Jackson. Pouilot also mentions the Rangers, Rays, and Phillies as potential suitors.

The lefty reliever made $2.75 million last year and in 2010 he enters his last year of arbitration eligibility his last 2 years of arbitration eligibility before becoming a free agent. Sherrill keep his strikeout rate above 9 and he generally keeps his walks a touch over 3 except for 2 outlier years in 2006 and 2008. While his FIP projection is similar to Bobby Seay’s, Sherrill did it as a general reliever and not a LOOGY like Seay did making his numbers more impressive.

Continue reading Tigers interested in George Sherrill?

Estimating the Tigers financial situation

The Detroit Tigers are certainly one of the more interesting teams heading into the winter meetings. They are a team with a top 5 payroll in a region that is struggling economically. The Tigers also have holes to fill in the bullpen and at shortstop and limited means to address those issues  with free agency and a farm system that can’t afford to surrender too many prospects. Dave Dombrowski has made some key players such as Edwin Jackson and Curtis Granderson available on the trade market leading to much speculation about a fire sale. But what really is the Tigers financial situation?

Continue reading Estimating the Tigers financial situation

Tigers courting Bobby Crosby

The Tigers in house shortstop options are currently Ramon Santiago and Brent Dlugach. With the team already starting a rookie at second base in Scott Sizemore, they would probably like a little more of a veteran presence on the other side of the bag- even if it is just to split time with Santiago. One of the options the team is reportedly looking at is former Athletic Bobby Crosby.

Crosby was a rising star at one point when he posted an .802 OPS as a 24 year old. He won the AL Rookie of the Year award. That was in 2005 though and Crosby’s numbers haven’t come close to that mark ever since and his career OPS is .683. Defensively he has been good, but not great posting UZR’s of about 3 in most years.

In 2009 Crosby only played 6 games at shortstop with the bulk of his playing time split between first base and third base. Any value that Crosby has is as a decent fielding shortstop. Putting his anemic bat at the corners makes him a below replacement level player. And that’s if he stays on the field. Crosby has only crossed the 100 game plateau twice in his career.

Image from ztil301 on Flickr

The Winter Meetings at DTW

As a baseball blogger, this week is one of the most exciting of the year. It doesn’t matter how good or bad your team is, news is likely to break and rumors will abound as every team tries to improve. Here at Detroit Tigers Weblog we’ll have the meetings thoroughly covered.

I had intended to attend the meetings in Indianapolis but that didn’t work out. That’s the bad news, the good news is that I had already taken the time off from the day job so I’ll be tethered to the computer, listening to the radio, and watching TV to hopefully catch anything that happens quickly.

Mentioning every rumor isn’t the normal M.O. here at DTW, but this week will be different. So expect more posts than usual, and many will be in shorter form. Of course any moves that take place will be covered in depth as well.

My intention will be to do some live chats, both text and video, throughout the week and that schedule will be forthcoming.

To best follow the goings on here at DTW there are a few options:

  • If you haven’t already subscribe to the RSS feed. While an email option is available, that only sends out a daily digest. The regular feed is the way to go for quick updates
  • Follow me on Twitter @billfer. Info will be cross posted there as well and you may actually see things there first via re-tweets. Also, you may want to follow @TweetingTigers which aggregates new content from 20+ Tigers news sources.
  • Become a fan of Detroit Tigers Weblog on Facebook. Yes, I’ve had a Facebook fan page for the site for quite some time, but haven’t done much with it. But now might be the time to get some value from it.
  • I’ll also try and keep the payroll spreadsheet up to date as moves are made.
  • If you’re away from your computer, you can still reach DTW via a myriad of smart phones. If you bring the page up on a mobile device and it isn’t mobile optimized, let me know and we’ll try to get that taken care of.

Winter Meetings – Heading to Day 3

I had so much hope after the first day of the winter meetings. The Tigers had two holes filled with plenty of money to fix the bullpen. Things aren’t going according to my plan.

Francisco Rodriguez was never an option for the Tigers, but he’s with the Mets. Kerry Wood was a very attractive, no compensatory draft pick, choice. But Wood chose the Indians.

The Tigers are still interested in J.J. Putz, but so are the Brewers. The Brewers have a better system and I don’t want the Tigers to get into a bidding war. Already Matt Joyce AND Jeff Larish AND Luis Marte have been discussed. That’s way too much for a guy with elbow ligament issues. It would be reminiscent of the Renteria trade in which the team instantly gets older. Joyce can’t be part of that deal.

But it sounds like the Mariners aren’t finding any matches and it’s unclear of the Tigers met with the Mariners today.

Brandon Lyon is a secondary arm I’d like to see the Tigers add. He’s talking to the Red Sox now.

Yes, Brian Fuentes (Rosenthal says the Tigers are interested in Fuentes) and Juan Cruz are still out there. Either would mean parting with the second round pick in next year’s draft.

Meanwhile the Tigers don’t like the Bobby Seay-Clay Rapada-Nate Robertson possibilities as lefties and continue to pursue Joe Beimel. Beimel is suitable as a LOOGY, but he wouldn’t be paid or used that way. The guy has walked more right handed batters in his career than he’s struck out. Don’t be fooled by the low ERA last year. Other than an ability to limit homers he isn’t a good pitcher.

If they can’t get Beimel then John Parrish is the back-up plan. Parrish has walked 6.10 batters per 9 innings over his career. Yippee. The walk numbers have been more mediocre to not good as of late, but the K-rate has gone the same way. He strikes me more as a spring training NRI than someone worthy of a 40 man roster spot.

Here’s hoping tomorrow is a better day.

UDPATE Wednesday 5:58 a.m.:

UPDATE Wednesday 7:43 p.m. Thanks to everyone for participating and keeping the rumors flowing today. Sheffield and Smoltz? Huh.

Winter Meetings – Heading to Day 2

With the Tigers being fairly active today, there won’t be a lot of speculation about those catcher and shortstop holes. But there still are items of interest on the relief pitching front. Here’s the buzz as I get ready to sign off for the night. This will be our day 2 rumor repository as well.

Chad Cordero will meet with 5 teams. The Tigers are one of them. I wonder if Cordero gets a big league deal from anyone or he chooses the best looking minor league contract.

Brandon Lyon, a favorite target of mine, will be meeting with the Royals along with Kyle Farnsworth.

As for the closer market, the Tigers are still connected to J.J. Putz and Kerry Wood. Their price could be heavily dictated by K-Rod who received an offer from the Mets that is expected to be 2 and 24 with a 3rd year option. Not quite the $75 million people were expecting heading into the offseason.

On that front, division rival Cleveland met with Kerry Wood’s people this evening and are still interested in Brian Fuentes and Trevor Hoffman.

I’ll post more as I hear it. As always I recommend checking out as well as Twitter for updates on the winter meetings.

UPDATE: 7:30 p.m. Kerry Wood is off the market and to the Indians. Damn. He wouldn’t have cost a draft pick or prospects. The Tigers continue to pursue J.J. Putz but I’d just assume not get into a prospect bidding war with the Brewers for a guy who is coming off an elbow injury.

Jason Beck continues to report Joe Beimel rumors. Let’s just say that Day 1 seems better than Day 2 so far.

Notes from Gerald Laird conference call

Paraphrasing some comments from Gerald Laird during his conference call today:

  • Thoughts on the Tigers pitchers: looking forward to being on the same side as Verlander, Bonderman and other guys and catching them instead of hitting them.
  • Doesn’t really know the guys on the team that well aside from playing against them
  • Comerica is a great hitting park
  • Jimmy Leyland is one of the greatest managers in the game. Excited to pick his brain and learn.
  • Excited to play everyday. Was very frustrating in Texas not knowing whether or not he was the guy. He’s looking forward to relaxing and not looking over his shoulder.
  • Looks forward to working with a stable rotation – there was a lot of flux in Texas
  • He started getting text messages while at the Arizona Cardinal game and found out later that night
  • His priority is to get the most out of the staff and throwing guys out and making plays at the plate. The bulk of his preparation is defensive game calling.

Tigers agree to terms with Adam Everett

Things are really starting to pick up for the Tigers after a slow start to the offseason. Ken Rosenthal is reporting that Detroit has agreed to a one year, one million dollar contract with some incentives. The deal is contingent on Everett passing a physical, but the Tigers must feel confident that his shoulder is healed after watching him workout yesterday.

Presumably Everett will split time with Ramon Santiago. Analysis will be forthcoming. In the meantime check out a wins-above-replacement analysis of the shortstops the Tigers were targeting.

The quick and dirty is: 1. Everett is a steal at one million 2. The left side of the infield looks to be very solid. 3. The bottom third of the order will likely be close-your-eyes bad. 4. Jack Wilson talk should subside until at least the trade deadline. 5. The Tigers have filled 2 needs and haven’t spent anything.

UPDATE: Despite an earlier denial by Dave Dombrowski this appears to be moving towards official. The denial is likely procedural until the MRI is done – which probably includes an MRI on the shoulder.

My thoughts haven’t changed too much, but in terms of value Everett is within a half win of Jack Wilson at a fraction of the cost. Or as Dave Cameron said in his analysis about the Tigers moves today:

This is a pretty massive steal for the Tigers, and along with the Gerald Laird trade earlier today, they’ve added something like three wins to their roster in 12 hours and spent a grand total of about $4 million to do so.

Heck of a day for Dave Dombrowski.