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Sunday, January 19, 2020

Should the Tigers chase after Dallas Keuchel?

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By Nick Dlugos

Dallas to Detroit?

Al Avila said the Tigers aren’t going to be buyers until 2021, but there’s a compelling argument for them to dish out some money for free agent Dallas Keuchel.

After the disappointing news arrived of Michael Fulmer being out for the season, it would make sense for the Tigers to chase Keuchel as his replacement. Keuchel posted a 3.24 ERA in 34 starts en route to a Gold Glove in 2018. That was lower than any Tigers starting pitcher, and he did it in three more starts than Detroit’s leading pitcher (Boyd, 31).

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Keuchel has an impressive résumé including All-Star Game appearances in 2015 and 2017, a 2015 AL Cy Young Award and four Gold Glove awards (’14,’15,’16,’18). Simply put, he’s been nothing but dominant since 2014. That trend looks to continue into 2019, which might help make the season a little more enjoyable for Tigers fans.

At 31 years old, Keuchel has some experience under his belt, meaning he could serve as a mentor for young pitchers to learn from.

Keuchel may be out of the Tigers price range, but that hasn’t stopped the team before (cue Jordan Zimmerman). However, Keuchel won’t be getting a $400 million contract from them anytime soon. He also may not be looking to join a rebuilding team, which—in the words of Al Avila—is exactly what the Tigers are.

While not impossible, Tigers fans shouldn’t be getting their hopes up for Keuchel. Daniel Norris might fire up the engines and prove to be the high-caliber pitcher that everyone has expected him to be. If that’s the case, Keuchel isn’t needed in Detroit.

As the season draws nearer, Keuchel may be willing to sign with a team like Detroit, but only time will tell.

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