This doesn’t quite make up for overpaying Magglio Ordonez, but it’s hard not to be at least a little excited about this trade. You never want to overpay for relief pitching, and the Tigers got a pretty good arm without giving up a ton. The Tigers unloaded a non-prospect reliever (Robert Novoa), a bust first round draft pick (Scott Moore), and an outfielder who will probably never see the major leagues for something like four years, if ever (Bo Flowers).
Kyle Farnsworth, like Sammy Sosa, fell out of favor in Chicago, and hopefully he’ll be a nice addition to the bullpen. He really struggled in the second half last year (1.82 WHIP), but was very effective in the first half (1.29 WHIP). Over his six year career, he’s had just about a strikeout an inning, and really broke out in 2001, when he struck out 107 in 82 innings, with a 2.74 ERA and a .213 batting average against. He struggled mightily in 2002, but bounced back in 2003 with as good of a season as he had in 2001. He continued this nice run into the first half of 2004 before falling off the wagon.
With Troy Percival as the closer, Urbina as the setup man/spot closer, and Jamie Walker as the left handed specialist, Farnsworth should fit in nicely. He’ll probably see his share of seventh innings, and when Urbina needs a break, his share of eighth innings as well. And they’re getting it all for $1.4 million.
So all in all, it’s been a pretty busy week for the Tiger’s front office. And it seems like every move they make will put them that much closer to contending this year.