Detroit Tigers Rumors: Is Brett Anderson a Good Fit in the Motor City?


There is no shortage of Detroit Tigers rumors making their way around the internet. Detroit will be looking to resolve the issues that plagued the clubs bullpen in 2014. They also have yet to figure out which direction to go in for a center fielder. The void in CF was a result of Austin Jackson’s departure to Seattle in the David Price trade right before the MLB trade deadline last July.

Last week the Tigers announced that they decided to exercise the club’s option on Joakim Soria. Soria came to Detroit also as a part of an MLB trade deadline deal by Tigers general, Dave Dombrowski. The option was worth $7 million.

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Soria will take the place of free-agent pitcher, Joba Chamberlain as the eighth inning set-up man.

Keeping the bullpen in mind, the Colorado Rockies recently declined their $12.5 million team option on left-handed pitcher Brett Anderson. The Tigers have not openly suggested that they are in the market for another starting pitcher to round out their rotation, but Dombrowski did not rule out the possibility during his year-end press conference.

So, lets take a look at Anderson.

Anderson has battled injury issues often throughout his career, however he is only 27-years-old.

Anderson was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2006. He would go on to spend just over one year in the Diamondbacks minor league system before being traded to the Oakland Athletics.

He would continue to progress his skills and would make his MLB debut in 2009 when he threw 175 1/3 innings with a 4.06 ERA and 3.69 FIP for the A’s. He was worth 3.6 WAR and finished sixth in the AL Rookie of the Year voting.

Unfortunately though, that would be the young pitchers best season in the big leagues. Injury problems ensued in 2010, limiting him to 112 1/3 innings. He also allowed a 2.80 ERA and 3.21 FIP. The following season, in 2011, he would log 83 1/3 innings before undergoing Tommy John surgery in June of that year.

In September of 2012 his season would be cut short yet again, when he strained an oblique. In 2013 his season ended prematurely due to a stress fracture in his foot. In 2014 it was a fractured index finger and bulging disk in his lower back that ended his season. He made only eight starts after he was traded to the Rockies.

So why would the Tigers bother with Brett Anderson?

When healthy, he’s a quality pitcher. He has a career 3.73 ERA and 3.51 FIP in 494 innings.

  1. With his injury concerns, he could be a buy-low target in free-agency
  2. Those two tidbits make the possibility at least somewhat appealing, especially with payroll concerns piling up in Detroit.

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There is a good chance that IF Anderson could stay healthy in Detroit, he may be effective. However, with four excellent starters already in the fold and bigger concerns elsewhere on the roster, I don’t think that the Tigers will shop for a fifth starter this offseason.

It seems more likely that the Tigers could use Kyle Lobstein, Robbie Ray, Buck Farmer, Drew VerHagen, or Kyle Ryan could fill the spot. If  the Tigers do however decide to go outside the organization for another starter, Anderson is the best low-cost, high-upside player available.

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