Detroit Tigers: Signing José Ureña is a disappointing move by front office

Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports /

The Detroit Tigers got it wrong by signing José Ureña to kick off their offseason.

Hours before Christmas Eve, the Detroit Tigers announced their first true big league signing in the form of starting pitcher José Ureña who had been DFA’d by the Miami Marlins. The Tigers signed Ureña to a one-year, $3.25 million contract to add some help to their rotation.

The signing kind of sucks, to be quite honest. Puttings things frank and honestly, it’s a disappointing move from General Manager (GM) Al Avila and the front office. I was not expecting them to go out and sign Trevor Bauer, but this is not the start I was hoping for.

Ureña is twenty-nine years old and has spent the last six seasons with the Marlins organization. In 2020 Ureña had to deal with some struggles. He battled through a stint on the COVID-19 list, which so many of the Marlins had to deal with. When he returned, he would make five starts upon returning but then broke his right forearm on a comebacker.

More from Detroit Jock City

However, Avila commented on the matter, making it seem like Ureña is going to come into the Tigers clubhouse and help them win ballgames while also helping contribute to the younger pitchers on the staff.

In 2020, Ureña’s five starts amounted to an 0-3 record, a 5.40 ERA, a 1.50 WHIP, and 15 strikeouts over 23.1 innings pitched.

In 2019, Ureña was demoted from the rotation, pitching 84.2 innings pitched while only making 13 starts on 24 appearances. During that time, he had a 5.21 ERA, a 1.48 WHIP, and only 62 punchouts.

The 2017 and 2018 seasons are not as bad and look like Ureñ is a tolerable and productive member of the rotation, but the latter stats are terrifying.

While yeah, spending $3.25 million is fine, but can Avila go out and sign a competent starting pitcher who didn’t end his season with a broken forearm and an ERA north of 5.00?

It’s frustrating not to sign anyone for this long when there are names the Tigers can be targeting out there like Chris Archer, Rick Porcello, Julio Teheran, and others. Instead, the Tigers spend $3.25 million on a starting pitcher who has minimal value whatsoever.

It seems like Christopher Illitch went to Avila and said, “Okay Al, I’ll give you $1.00, go piece together a team!” If that is the case and Avila has to build a rotation on a budget, can they not spend money on a player who is coming off an injury and has thrown just a little over 100 innings since the 2019 season?

Maybe for Christmas this year, the Tigers will get an influx of cash so they can sign players who provide value, even just for one season. At least players who can be flipped at the trade deadline and are clearly identified rentals going into the season, not full investment projects.

Must Read. Detroit Red Wings moved to Central; What does this mean for 2020-21?. light

Signing José Ureña was quite a disappointing start to the Detroit Tigers’ 2020 offseason acquisitions, but there is still time for General Manager Al Avila to get his act together.