Detroit Tigers should put Matt Manning in the fifth spot in the rotation

(Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports)
(Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Detroit Tigers have a lot to discuss ahead of the 2022 season as they start to shape up the roster. There’s a lot going on with the lockout right now, and while this is not a priority, the team does have to start figuring out how they envision things lining up for next season.

One of the things the Detroit Tigers have to do is start to figure out the starting rotation and how that will shape up. As it stands, the team is in need of one more starting pitcher that they should add via free agency. If not, they will be going into the year with the following rotation, according to Fangraphs:

  1. Casey Mize – RHP
  2. Eduardo Rodriguez – LHP
  3. Tarik Skubal – LHP
  4. Matt Manning – RHP
  5. Tyler Alexander – LHP

But, even with Tyler Alexander slated for the fifth spot in the rotation, I think that Matt Manning is better suited for this role. The former first-round draft choice still has plenty to like and look forward to in his second go with the big leagues.

He’s still figuring things out and perfecting his craft to be a big-league starting pitcher, there are some things he could change, but it’s too early to bail on the youngster. He’s going to be 24 when the 2022 season starts and is a former draft pick out of high school who took his time through the farm system.

Detroit Tigers pitcher Matt Manning should be placed fifth in the rotation.

Manning should be settled into this fifth spot in the rotation so that he can get a feel for things once again. After making 18 starts in 2021, he pitched to a 5.80 ERA, a 1.51 WHIP, and a 4-7 record for the Tigers in his debut season.

It was far from perfect, and there are changes to be made. Manning has not quite shown the velocity and command that was expected of him prior to his arrival in the big leagues. Manning would be best served at the very back of the rotation, likely to get some of the more favorable matchups.

If the Tigers are serious about the best amount of competitive advantage, sending out Matt Manning to start against an ace like Shane Bieber from the Cleveland Guardians is not the best. However, giving him a chance against some of the back of the rotation arms seems like the best move.

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Manning’s career is quite young and just getting underway; why not let him get acclimated and continue working with Chris Fetter by keeping him at the back of the rotation. Adding in someone to be the fourth starter seems like the best option, but as long as Manning gets the fifth spot in the rotation, it should work out well.