Along with MGoBlog, I also typically read through Bless You Boys (a Tigers blog) on a daily basis. Recently, editor Kurt Mensching wrote his opinion on the way the Tigers are handling Rick Porcello.
For those of you who don't want to waste the time reading the whole article, he basically states that pitchers like Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay, and Zach Greinke all had to spend substantial time in the minors before they were able to turn the corner in their major league careers. He says that the Tigers are basically ruining Porcello's chances of becoming the star pitcher that he has the potential to be by keeping him in the majors, and not giving him the time (and less pressure) he needs to work on his game in the minors.
However, if you send Porcello to the minors, you inevitably have to fill his spot in the rotation. And that's where the difficulty lies. Do you promote from the minors, and subsequently hurt the development of another prospect? Convert a middle reliever to a SP role, and create another gap to fill?
Personally, I think the Tigers should option him down to Toledo for the rest of the season and shouldn't bring him back to Detroit until June of next year. I think it's safe to say we're no longer playoff contenders, so there really seems to be no reason to keep him here. As far as filling his role, I'd say their best bet is to move Eddie Bonine or Brad Thomas into the rotation and get guys like Schlereth, Figaro, and other minor league relievers into a sort of rotation to fill in the bullpen. This would enable them to keep guys like Andy Oliver (who also looks to have good potential) in the minors, and give them the time they need to develop.
What are your thoughts?