Should The Detroit Tigers Extend David Price Or Rick Porcello?


With the acquisition of Shane Greene the Detroit Tigers once again have one of the best rotations in the Major Leagues. The trade was a solid one that opens up multiple options for the Tigers. Greene is a solid, cost-efficient moves as the Tigers are getting more and more expensive.

With one of the best rotations in the Majors obviously comes a hefty price tag. Justin Verlander has already signed his mega-deal. Anibal Sanchez has already been paid. The Tigers still have to decide whether to sign Max Scherzer or not. That’s to be expected as you have ERA kings, Cy Youngs, and All-Stars in your rotation.

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That brings us to the question of Rick Porcello and David Price. They’re both solid pitchers but have different risks and costs associated with both pitchers.

The reality of the situation is that they are both free agents after the 2015 season. They will also cost differently and depending on that more or fewer teams will want them once free agency hits.

So which pitcher should the Tigers extend?

In the case of David Price he already has a spectacular resume built up for free agency. He just racked up the most strikeouts in the AL and won the 2012 AL Cy Young. He’s been named to the All-Star team 4 times and was the superstar that represented the Tampa Bay Rays for years. He also has a pretty cute dog.

He’s a lefty too which has been an absence in the Tigers’ rotation the last few years. Price has the reputation of a legit ace around the league and it’s well deserved. He’s shown time and time again how good he is with his career 3.21 ERA and 86 wins.

Price is undeniably the better pitcher compared to Porcello. He’s just flat-out good and it’s not exactly fair to compare Porcello to Price. He’s the ace of the starting rotation right now and everyone knows it.

In terms of whom to extend though it’s not that easy. Price will be much more expensive than Porcello first of all. He’s already projected to make $20 million in his final year of arbitration. He will also be pursued more by teams come the winter after the 2015 season. The better pitcher will come with a higher price tag. Price is 29 already and 3 years older than Porcello.

Sep 26, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Rick Porcello (21) pitches in the first inning against the Minnesota Twins at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Then there’s Porcello. Tigers fans fail to realize the youth of Porcello since he’s been pitching in their rotation since the 2009 season. In fact, Porcello is actually 6 weeks younger than newly acquired Tiger Shane Greene.

The case for Porcello is the huge steps he took in the 2014 season. In a way he was the most consistent Tigers pitcher throughout the 2014 season. He pitched a career-high 204.2 IP with a stellar 3.43 ERA. After the disappointing seasons Tigers fans experienced from him before his breakout it was a refreshing sight. Porcello is also about to enter his athletic prime which is good for him for contract talks.

He’s been recently mentioned in some trade talks and there’s a reason he is. Sure he faded a bit down the stretch but the extended workload could have been taken its toll.

Porcello is no David Price but he’s been solid in his own right. If the Tigers are to extend him to a contract it would be a lot cheaper than Price too. Porcello’s still 25 and extending a long-term contract to the younger pitcher is usually the safer route.

Both pitchers have their costs and advantages. It will be interesting to see which route the Tigers take as their golden starting rotation is their premium strength.

Now, your thoughts. Who should the Tigers extend? David Price? Rick Porcello? Or could a trade be in the works? Whatever your answer, the Tigers will have to make a decision after the 2015 season about their starting rotation.

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