OT: Yankees, Tigers, D'Backs complete 3 team trade

Submitted by jerseyblue on December 5th, 2014 at 10:44 AM

As per Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports. Yankees get SS Didi Gregorius from Aizona. Tigers get SP Shane Greene from NYY. Arizona gets Robbie Ray and another pitcher from Detroit.

As a Yankee fan who watched Greene pitch last year I think the Tigers did well here. I really liked Greene going forward. Little bumbed here.

Ok back to the coaching threads.

EDIT: Domingo Leyba has been named as the second guy going from Detroit to Arizona.



December 5th, 2014 at 12:55 PM ^

Sometimes trades go that way guys, and it's not always because Dombrowski is an idiot.  Fister had an awesome year last year in the NL, but we don't know he'll do that every year or if he would have looked that good in the AL (because he never did before).  

And even if you want to blame DD for that, then you have to give him major credit for the Prince Fielder trade, and those together result in a major net-gain for the Tigs.

MGJS SuperKick Party

December 5th, 2014 at 10:52 AM ^

Long story short, I think this opens the door to trade Porcello or Price... I'm going to be really annoyed either way. I'll be annoyed (but not mad) if they sign Max out of this deal too. He's very good, but my ship sailed on him this year...


December 5th, 2014 at 11:00 AM ^

I irrationally want to keep Porcello for a very long time, which has everything to do with the fact that he started so young that if he sticks around for another 10 years (after which he'd be just 35) he'd be really high on all the Tigers' career lists.

Alas, it seems as if the possibility exists right now for a Porcello-for-Cespedes trade.


December 5th, 2014 at 11:30 AM ^

It's not an irrational thought on Porcello but I'd ask you do you think that Rick will be worth the $95+ million contract he's likely to get ala Homer Bailey? I'm more inclined to think no as the Tigers have too much tied up in other players to pay Rick after this season. If they can get value in the outfield for him they might have to pull the trigger.


December 5th, 2014 at 10:59 AM ^

I like Greene. More upside than Ray in my opinion. And yes this should be a deal that leads to another one.

Maybe Porcello and another nice piece for Cespedes?


December 5th, 2014 at 11:37 AM ^

If you're old enough to remember '87 then you'll know that when Doyle went 9-and frickin-0 down the stretch as the Tiges battled Toronto until the final day of the season, before finally defeating them in game 162, NO ONE gave a Crap how good Smoltz might be SOME DAY!
The Whitaker-Trammell-Gibson-Parrish-Morris team deserved another shot at the ring. As Sparky said after the deal: "I could be dead next year!"
How good were the Tigers during the bulk of Smoltz's career '91-'04 or so? How many division titles or World Series did not having him cost them?
'87 was the most exciting pennant race I ever remember, so don't screw with my memories Pal!
On another note, Shane Greene looked really good last year. And to the OP - Didi Gregorius looks like an exciting ballplayer, loads of speed & pop. The only team getting an unknown here is AZ

Everyone Murders

December 5th, 2014 at 12:02 PM ^

I think that's what I meant when I said "yes, I know that Doyle Alexander pitched great immediately after the trade".  He was also a WAR of 3.9 with Detroit alone during that stretch.  It was an amazing performance, especially by a guy that was charitably described as a journeyman prior to the trade. 

He also went 0-2 in the ALCS and rocked a 10.00ERA, and never won a post-season game.  In the following two years, he went 20-29, so net-net he had a losing record for the Tigers.  The upside for the Tigers was dramatic, but short-lived.

I know there's a counter-argument, but the Fister trade was driven in large part by contract concerns and knowing that the Tigers could not keep their entire then-current staff.  So that trade looked awful to some fans at the time, but did not offend me as much as it did others.  The Smoltz trade, in retrospect, was a trade for a thrilling division race at the cost of a lights-out HOF pitcher with an incredibly long career.  213-155, and versatile enough to move to the bullpen when the Braves needed that (154 saves).

In retrospect, Alexander for Smoltz was - IMO - an awful trade. 

Sorry to screw with your memories, but there you have it. 


December 5th, 2014 at 12:04 PM ^

Tigers had a win now team, so they made a win now move and got Alexander.  And they won the pennant.  No trade of ONE PLAYER  that wins you a pennant is a bad move, period.  Once in the playoffs they could have won the World Series, which would have made the trade a genius level move.


If they had flamed out and missed the playoffs you could complain.  They didn't.


The idea that the Fister trade was someone "contract related" is also utter bullshit, or the Tigers wouldn't have gone out and replaced him with Price.  Price made double what Fister did last year, though the Tiger's weren't responsible for most of it.  I believe they will have comparable salaries this year, though Price will certainly not be any cheaper than Fister. 

Everyone Murders

December 5th, 2014 at 1:35 PM ^

I love this message board.  I really do.  It's a place where I can expressly acknowledge that Alexander pitched lights out to allow the Tigers to win the division in the initial post, and still get pilloried because I supposedly don't understand that Alexander pitched lights out. 

Also, you declare that "the idea that the Fister trade was someone [sic] 'contract related' is also utter bullshit."  You seem to like to toss that term around, but some might disagree with you.  The Fister trade was motivated by contract per DD.  See HERE.  Fister was arbitration eligible next year, and figured to pull down about $7M/year.  So instead of taking DD's word for it, we should take yours? 

Look, I understand why Alexander looked like a good trade at the time, and pushed Detroit over the hump for that run.  Alexander also gacked in the post-season, and was mediocre for the rest of his career.  Smoltz became Smoltz.

So what it really boils down to is when you look at the trade.  If you want to stop looking at the trade on the eve of the post-season in 1987, you're right.  It was a great trade.  If you want to look at the trade 27 years later, I think I'd rather have kept Smoltz. 

Finally, you'll note that I said the Alexander-for-Smoltz trade was worse IMO.  I even underlined it and bolded it so it would be hard to miss.  You have a different opinion - that's fine.  But they're both just opinions.


December 5th, 2014 at 12:22 PM ^

No I wasn't commenting about the Fister trade at all. That wasn't a good trade. I would say it was worse than Alexander - Smoltz because the Tiges won the division in '87 only because of that trade - LITERALLY. They do not make the playoffs without Alexander. That team deserved another shot, as I stated previously. The fact they didn't end up winning is irrelevant, really...they had their shot, but ran up against a ridiculously hot Twins team that ended up winning the WS. So what Alexander did in subsequent years doesn't impact my point. What he did in the '87 ALCS does somewhat, but again, they're not even there without him. And to my other point: How many times in the '90s did the Tigers finish within say 7 games of a playoff spot, the amount that having Smoltz would have made a difference?
I would NOT go back and undo that trade because getting to the playoffs is what it's all about. Anything can happen once you're there. Ask the Giants

Everyone Murders

December 5th, 2014 at 1:21 PM ^

A lot of my view is 20:20 hindsight.  It really depends on your perspective, and I know that few suspected Smoltz would end up being the phenom he was.

Unlike you, though, I'd undo the trade.  Winning the division in thrilling fashion was great - especially with '84 not too far in the rearview mirror.  But Alexander underwhelmed in the ALCS, and I think his 9-0 performance before then was more of a fluke performance than a sure thing.

Remember, if you want to assume that "anything could happen" in 1987 in the post-season, to be fair you should allow that "anything could happen" during the close of the regular season too.  If you do that trade again in an "anything could happen" scenario, there's a really strong chance the Tigers miss the post-season altogether. 

In any event, it's all counterfactuals.  There's a chance that Smoltz would not have developed in the Tigers' system, would have been traded away in '88 for a pile of chewing gum, etc. 

CRISPed in the DIAG

December 5th, 2014 at 12:31 PM ^

I upvoted you for using WAR.  But in the summer of 87, the Tigers weren't trading the future John Smoltz for a guy they hoped could maintain lightning in a bottle for a few more years.  They were trading a prospect for a guy to eat innings in the depth of a pennant race while Sparky tried to figure out his young bullpen. If anything happened, the trade might have exceeded expectations. Combine this with an aging lineup and I'm sure the Tigers FO would continue to value this move differently than you.  Given the general state of the Tigers roster by that point, I'm pretty sure Smoltz would have been dealth by '89 when they finally cratered. 

Prospects are annually thrown away in July.  This one just happens to be a really good story.

Everyone Murders

December 5th, 2014 at 1:38 PM ^

My views are based on 20:20 hindsight.  I don't quarrel with the notion that the trade made sense at the time. 

And you raise good points about the aging roster.  But it's all counterfactuals.  Let's say Smoltz had stuck around and developed by 1989.  He could have been dealt for parts that would have made the suckitude of the 1990s Tigers significantly less than it was.  By 1989 sticking with Smoltz would look awfully defensible.

CRISPed in the DIAG

December 5th, 2014 at 2:46 PM ^

Nothing wrong with talking about hindsight. It's fun.  But I disagree that the Tigers would have held onto Smoltz in '89.  Holding onto Smoltz in '89 while he was compiling an ERA+ of something like 123 (which is what he was doing with the Bravos) while toiling for a last place team would have been criminal. Yes, the Braves didn't get good for a couple more years.  The difference here is that the Braves were stocked with plenty of young talent while the Tigers....weren't.  

The move for an MLB club with a depleted 40-man and farm system is to try to fleece a contender for multiple prospects rather than hold onto a guy that you might pitch into the ground by the time you assemble another competitive team.  The only way holding onto Smoltz would have been defensible would have been if the corpse of Bill Lajoie didn't receive a fair offer.

Like I said hindsight is fun, so no harm there.  I just get sick of hearing guys like Dan Patrick (who generally seems smart enough to know better) talk about this everytime Smoltz appears on his radio show.


December 5th, 2014 at 11:03 AM ^

Dombrowski admitting here that the Fister trade is a bust, but let's analyze this deal separately. The Tigers just traded for 5 years of control on a pitcher that has a strikeout rate of 9.3k/9 last year and an xFIP of 3.43. Hopefully Greene follows up what he did last season because that could be huge for the back end of the Tigers rotation.


December 5th, 2014 at 11:11 AM ^

Looked at in a vacuum this is a great deal.  Dombrowski traded a steaming pile of utter crap (Ray) for a decent pitcher who, because he strikes out so many guys, actually has some upside.

The issue is that we never should have had the steaming pile of utter crap to begin with. There was just no reason to make the deal.


December 5th, 2014 at 11:06 AM ^

MLive had a quick story on this right here - LINK

Some of the summary stats on Greene:

Greene, who is under team control for five years and isn't eligible for arbitration until 2015, is expected to be a candidate for the fifth spot in Detroit's starting rotation. He was 5-4 with a 3.78 ERA in 15 appearances last season with New York. The 26-year-old recorded 81 strikeouts in 78 innings pitched.

Also, Didi Gregorious is a modern name with a certain retro flair as baseball goes. Nice.


December 5th, 2014 at 11:07 AM ^

Baseball is a funny sport; the tigers have enough to win the world series---just need to get hot at the right time.

I think they still need bullpen help. I think Porcello comes / goes with the Tigers depending on whether Iglesias can be the everyday shortstop next year. 



December 5th, 2014 at 11:07 AM ^

Yankee fan here too - Greene's numbers were better than his peripherals, but he got the job done to get wins. He's a good addition by the Tigers for depth.

As an aside - I feel like the Yanks and Tigers have made quite a few deals over the past few years. I wonder if Cashman and Dombrowski ever worked together in some capacity.


December 5th, 2014 at 11:16 AM ^

I have heard plenty of bashing on sports-talk radio about the Fister deal. I think, and rightfully so, DD is getting a slight pass on this because 99% of the time he works, every time. I haven't read anywhere or heard anyone in the Detroit media defend the Fister trade, maybe initially, but they would be a clown show to defend that now! Curious as to what you are referencing here....?


December 5th, 2014 at 11:13 AM ^

So the Fister trade was... not very successful afterall. Unless Shane Greene turns out to be a stud. I know nothing about him, but Ray was a solid prospect at least.


December 5th, 2014 at 11:16 AM ^

It brought Smyly out of the pen, where he was desperately needed.  Then it forced DD to trade Smyly and Jackson away at the deadline to get Price to replace Fister.

The Tigers would have been a lot better with Smyly in the pen.  That being said, with Mr. "I only pitch relievers in certain innings no matter how good they are" managing them, Smyly would have been glued to the bench while Dumb and Dumber gave up a billion runs to blow the Baltimore series anyway.  So maybe it didn't really matter.