Detroit tendered contracts to David Price and Rick Porcello, however both can be on different rosters come 2015. Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal noted on Twitter the Tigers are drawing strong interest in the starters that will become free agents after next season. Price and Porcello are both in their final arbitration years and are expected to make $19 million and $12 million next season, respectively.
Porcello-Cespedes swap possible
Porcello is coming off of a solid season, during which he posted a 3.43 ERA and 3.67 FIP in 204.2 innings pitched. He has pitched at least 170 innings all but once in his major league career, and most recently has been linked to the Red Sox. ESPN's Jayson Stark said on Wednesday that a trade between Boston and Detroit can involve Porcello and Yoenis Cespedes, who the Tigers are fond of. Detroit is also looking for a consistent bat in right field, and Cespedes should be able to provide that.
Although he is attractive to teams looking for front of the rotation arms and is coming off of a career year (innings pitched, ERA, 1.8 walks per nine innings), Porcello's youth will benefit him moving forward. He will become a free agent before turning 27, having made his debut in 2009 and remaining in the Tigers' rotation for the remainder of that season. A Porcello-Cespedes swap would almost exclusively be about need, since Cespedes too will be a free agent after the 2015 season.
Boston also has several top pitching prospects that can be included in a deal, but the idea of losing Max Scherzer to free agency this winter could lead the Tigers to keep Porcello.
Price likely to remain in Detroit
While Porcello has been drawing interest from Boston, several teams have also checked in on Price. Price posted a 3.26 ERA and 2.78 FIP in 248.1 innings pitched. Any deal for Price would likely have to include additional pieces in return because of his career accomplishments and the contract that he could ask for as a free agent next winter. MLB.com's Jason Beck notes it is unlikely Price would be traded unless Scherzer could be resigned.
Price and Porcello, if dealt, would be plus acquisitions for teams such as the Braves, Diamondbacks, Rangers, Mariners, Angels, Blue Jays, and Rays, which are all looking to add starting pitchers this offseason.