Needless to say, this took my by surprise when I saw it this morning. Everyone’s read about the Yankee’s pitching woes. At one point heading into the spring, they had seven possible starters. Two of those are starting the season on the DL and two others are dinged up. Their ace is 42 years old and had a bad back. So I’m not completely surprised they pulled the trigger on a deal to get them some more pitching.
I am a little surprised that the Tigers would take on this much payroll, unless there’s some cash involved in the deal that I don’t know about. I also wonder whether Mike Ilitich believes that the star power of A-Rod will put fans in the seats and that the two time MVP will pay for himself.
I’m also a little bummed because I always liked Brandon Inge. He was a great story in 2004, when after being given up for dead after the Pudge signing, he turned himself into a Tony Phillips esque utility and finally settled in at third base, where I project he’ll win his first gold glove. He didn’t hit nearly as well in 2005, but at least his numbers were respectable.
If I had to guess, Joel Zumaya will now move into the rotation. The Tigers don’t need a fifth starter until mid-April, and they’re probably hoping Aaron Small is ready by then. Small had an interesting season last year. He came out of nowhere and finished 10-0 witha 3.20 ERA, but many feel he’s set to come back down to earth. He doesn’t strike out many guys and his walk rate isn’t all that great either, but as a back of the rotation starter, he’s not that bad.
Sounds like physicals are being done today so the trade can be finalized before each team opens up the season.
And if you made it this far, check your calendar, because it’s April Fools Day.