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Tigers acquire Jarrod Washburn for Luke French and minor leaguer

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Guys like French and Robles should be players that any decent org turns out on a regular basis. So when you find yourself in first place and it's August and you have obvious holes, you use those to fill them.

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The thing that isn't clear to me is - why is Washburn a better fit for the Tigers than for the Mariners? Both teams are weak-hitting, good defense teams who play in large home parks. Both teams have similar records. The only real difference is that the Tigers are a couple of games in first while the Mariners trail the Angels and Rangers. But they aren't out of the race by any means.

Seattle is 8 games back. They are out of the race.

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Not everyone thinks it's a good trade, for Detroit...

Over the last 24 hours, as rumors circulated that the Mariners were leaning towards hanging onto Jarrod Washburn, the collective Seattle fanbase prepared for another trade deadline disaster. We were used to those, after all.

However, we can unplug our noses and breathe again, because Jarrod Washburn has been traded to the Detroit Tigers for Luke French and Mauricio Robles.

As a Mariner fan, this trade makes me want to jump up and down and hug someone. The M’s turned a 35-year-old lefty strike throwing flyballer who is due $3.5 million over the rest of the season and then becomes an expensive free agent into a 24-year-old lefty strike thrwoing flyballer who is due $0 over the rest of the year and won’t be a free agent until after 2015. And they got a 20-year-old lefty with huge strikeout numbers in A-ball to boot.

French isn’t going to be an ace, but let’s be honest, neither is Washburn. His value is entirely tied to an ERA that is, quite simply, a fluke. His 2.64 ERA is more than a run lower than his 3.75 FIP… and his FIP is deflated by an unsustainable 6.4% HR/FB rate. In reality, Washburn has pitched like a guy who deserves an ERA more like 4.4, but thanks to the wonders of good defense, a ballpark perfectly suited to his skills, and some good luck, he has the appearance of something more than a back-end starter.

A back-end starter, though, is exactly what he is. The addition of a sinker and confidence in his big slow breaking ball have allowed him to marginally improve this year, but the step up is in small percentages, not large gains. Tigers fans wondering what to expect from Washburn should be thinking a mid-4s ERA, as long as you put some good defenders behind him on days he pitches.

Worse for Detroit, Washburn is a Type B free agent, but offering him arbitration would be borderline insane. Coming off a career year, with a previous $10 million salary, he’d easily get $14 or $15 million if taken to arbitration, and he’s probably not even worth half that as a free agent. So, while the Tigers give up a couple of interesting young arms for a rental, they won’t even get draft pick compensation when he leaves this winter.

Mariner fans are rejoicing for good reason. They just moved an overvalued asset for a couple of interesting, cheap young pitchers. This is a great trade for Seattle. Detroit? I think you’re about to be disappointed by what you acquired.

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I don't think the Ms undersold. Washburn isn't as good as his 2.64 ERA. It's a pretty even trade, and a trade the Tigers could easily afford to make.

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I expect a scathing article on fangraphs from Dave Cameron.

He says on his ussmariner site that French is just as good as Washburn today, and Robles is the second coming. Or something like that.

I don't know if I'd go so far as calling it "scathing", but Fangraphs definitely sees the Mariners as winning this one.

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Washburn has a .243 BABIP, he's certainly not as good as he seems this year...but kind of like Edwin Jackson (not as good!) even if he regresses he should still be a useful pitcher.

Just can't let the Edwin Jackson thing go, can you?

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Seattle is 8 games back. They are out of the race.

And Anaheim/Texas are clearly superior teams.

It wouldn't surprise me to see Washburn return to Seattle next year as a FA.

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Come on, bat! We need a bat! If we get Washburn AND a bat in another deal, I'll be ecstatic. I'm talking Dunn, Dombrowski!

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I expect a scathing article on fangraphs from Dave Cameron.

He says on his ussmariner site that French is just as good as Washburn today, and Robles is the second coming. Or something like that.

Yeah, he seems to think Washburn = French. I'm not buying that bill o' goods one bit.

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So when you find yourself in first place and it's August and you have obvious holes, you use those to fill them.

Giggidy...

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I expect a scathing article on fangraphs from Dave Cameron.

He says on his ussmariner site that French is just as good as Washburn today, and Robles is the second coming. Or something like that.

But I thought the Tigers system was trash, that there's nothing anyone else wants (lol).

Yes, fangraphs was ripping on the trade. They're ascribing all of Washburn's success to Safeco Field, the Mariners' defense, and luck. Well, Comerica Park is very friendly to left-handed pitchers, the Tigers defense is certainly on par with the Mariners, and even a BABIP regression would leave Washburn as a trustworthy mid rotation starter.

Of course the paper and other mainstream media here (Seattle) will probably not be too keen on the move.

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I just read the fangraphs article.

Cameron is right in that Mariners fans should be happy with the trade. Any time you are out of the race and have a valuable asset, you should get something for him (especially when you can't afford to offer arbitration). So, yes, Mariners fans should rejoice, because they actually got something.

But I don't agree with his opinion that Tigers fans will be disappointed. I think most Tigers fans are expecting an ERA in the low to mid 4s. He also talks about how Washburns numbers are helped by a good defense in Seattle. The Tigers have one of the best defenses as well, so that doesn't change. They also have a ballpark that is similar to the Seattle one as well. Yes, Washburn is not as good as his ERA, but he is certainly worth trading for.

The thing I can't understand is how he relies on FIP and projection to downgrade Washburn, but seems to ignore that for French. French has a handful of starts in the majors, and from what I remember, had benefited greatly from an insanely low BA with RISP.

Tigers fans should be happy with this deal. I think Dave Cameron is letting his Mariner bias get in the way of win-win deal for both teams.

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Per an email alert..

TIGERS ACQUIRE JARROD WASHBURN FROM SEATTLE

The Detroit Tigers bolstered their rotation for the playoff

chase on Friday, acquiring left-hander Jerrod Washburn from

the Seattle Mariners in exchange for left-hander Luke French

and Class A left-hander Mauricio Robles.

Washburn, 31, has gone 8-6 with a 2.64 ERA (third best in AL)

in 20 starts for the Mariners this season, allowing just 109

hits and 33 walks in 133 innings pitched. He was 4-1 in July

with a 1.44 ERA in six starts. MORE FROM TIGERS.COM >>

The Official Site of The Detroit Tigers | tigers.com: Homepage

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Not everyone thinks it's a good trade, for Detroit...

Of course, everything that he said was depressing Washburn's ERA in Seattle is true about Detroit.

I don't expect Washburn's numbers to be too different in Detroit than they were in Seattle.

As fo French, well, let's just say it isn't just people in Detroit who overrate Detroit's prospects. French will never be more than a 5th starter. No big loss.

Good trade for the Tigers.

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French is of no consequence in this deal. He's nowhere near a #3 starter, he's most likely organizational fodder. He's had a nice year, and a couple of starts, but I doubt he'll have more success against teams he's already seen. This deal is Robles for Washburn.

Well, I want to thank Luke. He kept us in 4 out of the 5 games he started. He did everything expected of a #5 guy. And with some run support, he could easily have won 4 games. AND, he showed enough for us to acquire a veteran SP. Thanks, Luke!

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I just read the fangraphs article.

Cameron is right in that Mariners fans should be happy with the trade. Any time you are out of the race and have a valuable asset, you should get something for him (especially when you can't afford to offer arbitration). So, yes, Mariners fans should rejoice, because they actually got something.

But I don't agree with his opinion that Tigers fans will be disappointed. I think most Tigers fans are expecting an ERA in the low to mid 4s. He also talks about how Washburns numbers are helped by a good defense in Seattle. The Tigers have one of the best defenses as well, so that doesn't change. They also have a ballpark that is similar to the Seattle one as well. Yes, Washburn is not as good as his ERA, but he is certainly worth trading for.

The thing I can't understand is how he relies on FIP and projection to downgrade Washburn, but seems to ignore that for French. French has a handful of starts in the majors, and from what I remember, had benefited greatly from an insanely low BA with RISP.

Tigers fans should be happy with this deal. I think Dave Cameron is letting his Mariner bias get in the way of win-win deal for both teams.

One part of that article I was kind of worried about is his point about the number Washburn would get in arbitration. Do you think the Tigers will even bother risking offering Washburn arbitration now?

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Cameron's (fangraphs) take was fair. Washburn is a 12 start rental pitcher. I doubt we resign him, he is a little broken down physically and we will not offer arbitration because nobody is going to pay Jarrod Washburn 14MM a year. Thats what you risk if you offer arbitration and Washburn accepts (I doubt he would) But you never know.

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I expect a scathing article on fangraphs from Dave Cameron.

He says on his ussmariner site that French is just as good as Washburn today, and Robles is the second coming. Or something like that.

Dave Cameron being a pompous *** and a Mariners homer? Haha, no way!

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How old is he? ESPN has him at 34 and this article has him at 31. He isn't Dominican, so what gives?

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