The 2018 Detroit Tigers starting pitching staff will look considerably different then we have been used to in previous seasons. Gone are the days of the top starting pitching staff with the likes of Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer, Rick Porcello and a younger in his prime Anibal Sanchez. Also gone are the days of going after the hot free agents. According to Tony Paul,
To put it in perspective, the Tigers for so long under Mike Ilitch used to shop at Nordstrom; this year, they’re more likely to browse racks at Goodwill.
The starting pitching staff in 2018 will be much different; except for the proven Michael Fulmer, the rest of the staff will be unproven for the most part. We will take a look at three starting pitchers the Tigers should consider signing. The names will not be in the top tier of free agent starting pitchers, but more of a stop gap until the young guys in the lower levels are polished enough to get a look in the majors.
I know most fans will ask who? But, Jhoulys Chacin might be exactly the type of guy the Tigers are looking for. He is relatively young at 29 years old and throws right-handed. Jhoulys Chacin might offer the Tigers a value as his salary in 2017 was only 1.75 million. While pitching for the San Diego Padres last year, Chacin compiled a 3.89 ERA and finishing 13-10 with a 2.8 WAR. If he pitches well for the Tigers he could move on to bigger and better teams, or he could be dangled as trade bait during the July trading deadline.
Andrew Cashner, formerly of the Texas Rangers, is a 31-year-old right-hander. He is another guy here who the Tigers could sign for a short-term deal, however, it most likely won’t be too cheap. Last season, on a one year deal, Cashner made $10 million. Something slightly less than that may be in order, but not much less. If he pitches well he could move on or get traded at the deadline as well. Cashner had a good season with the Texas Rangers posting a 3.40 ERA to go along with his 11-11 record and a 4.6 WAR.
Tyler Chatwood posted a 4.69 ERA to go along with his 8-15 record and a 2.1 WAR, this season in Colorado. There’s no doubt that Chatwood would benefit by pitching somewhere other than the high altitude at Coors Field. This is something we can offer with the vast size of Comerica Park. Chatwood is still relatively young at 27 years old. Last season he made $4.4 million, and will likely see that number increase slightly–especially given that he’ll be pitching in more pitcher-friendly ballparks.
Again, these guys are not going to be household names. But they can eat some innings and bridge a gap until the Beau Burrows, Franklin Perez and or Matt Manning are ready to go in Detroit.
So nation who would be your choice?