The Tigers Have Traded Michael Lorenzen To The Phillies

We can’t escape Dave Dombrowski, can we? OK, I’m being a bit cheeky there. This is the second trade the Tigers have made with the Phillies in the last several months. They traded Gregory Soto for Nick Maton, Matt Vierling, and Donny Sands last January. And now the Tigers have traded soon-to-be free agent Michael Lorenzen to the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for Hao-Yu Lee, a 20-year-old minor league second base prospect. Lorentzen will pitch good baseball in Philadelphia. He’s a strikes thrower, and he’s very durable. He’s finally allowed to potentially do something he’s never been able to do in his major league career, and that’s pitch in the postseason. I wish him all the best. Given how he’s throwing the ball this season, I expect a nice contract in the off-season from a competitive team looking to add a number three starter. 

There are going to be Tigers fans who are disappointed by this return, but this is what happens when you trade rentals. We live in our bubble and over-inflate the value of certain players. Michael Lorenzen is good but an above-average major-league pitcher on an expiring deal. The Tigers got back the Phillies' number-five Prospect in their system. He's a 20-year-old with a high on-base percentage and an excellent strikeout-to-walk rate. Scott Harris, the Tigers' president of baseball operations, made it clear from day one that he wants players in this organization who dominate the strike zone. That's a fancy way of saying he wants guys who get on base. So far, when you look at the players he has acquired, Harris has been consistent with that philosophy. 

I can't predict the future. I am still determining how this guy will pan out. But on paper, this is a solid return for the Tigers. The next step will be proving that this organization knows what they're doing in regard to player development. This guy is not dead on arrival. There's something to work with here. If the powers that be know what they're doing, Detroit's future will be bright. The Eduardo Rodriguez trade will tell us a greater story. Lorentzen was always going to be a rental. This is a good start. Let's see what's next.