MLB Trade Rumors: Tigers to Deal for Starting Pitcher by Opening Day

The rumor mill hasn’t stopped churning, and the Detroit Tigers can’t seem to find their way out of it.  Earlier this week it was reported that the Tigers could still add a starting pitcher this spring.  Yesterday, Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com said that he’s spoke to “some baseball people” who are convinced Detroit will “deal for a starting pitcher” by Opening Day.

Will the Detroit Tigers let a young arm such as Jacob Turner win a spot in their rotation this spring or look to fill it via trade? Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-US PRESSWIRE

Detroit has been tied, and then untied, and then tied, and then untied, to starting pitching all offseason.  The name most frequently paired with the Tigers has been Chicago Cubs right-hander Matt Garza.  Negotiations between the Tigers and Cubs regarding Garza were characterized as ‘close’ and ‘heated’ several times, as a rumored package built around Detroit’s young starting pitcher Jacob Turner was being prepared for Chicago’s ace.

But an agreement was never reached.  The Tigers said they were not looking to trade Turner, and the Cubs are now talking long-term extension with Garza.

Still, the media continues to send signals that the Tigers are interested in adding another starting pitcher this spring.  Detroit currently has four pitchers slotted into rotation spots for 2012; Justin Verlander, Doug Fister, Max Scherzer and Rick Porcello.  The fifth spot is up for grabs, but the Tigers have a bevy of options to fill it, including; Duane BelowAdam WilkAndy OliverDrew Smyly, Casey Crosby and Turner.

Detroit has said it’s comfortable letting one of their younger, less experienced arms win the fifth spot this spring.  However, as the Tigers project as contenders for the 2012 World Series with the addition of Prince Fielder to an already strong roster, Detroit could look to better its chances by adding more of a sure thing to its rotation.

No names have been mentioned, but several experienced starting pitchers are known to be available, including; Wandy Rodriguez (Houston Astros), Gavin Floyd (Chicago White Sox) and Jeff Niemann and Wade Davis (Tampa Bay Rays).

What do you think the Tigers should do with their fifth spot?  Trade a prospect or two of value to plug the hole with an experienced pitcher?  Or allow one of their young arms to win the spot this spring?

For more on the Tigers, be sure to check out Motor City Bengals.

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Topics: Adam Wilk, Andy Oliver, Casey Crosby, Detroit Tigers, Doug Fister, Drew Smyly, Duane Below, Gavin Floyd, Jacob Turner, Jeff Niemann, Justin Verlander, Matt Garza, Max Scherzer, Prince Fielder, Rick Porcello, Wade Davis, Wandy Rodriguez

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