Detroit Tigers: Matthew Boyd’s early season woes are very concerning

August 3rd, 2020 in Tigers By Bob Heyrman

Matthew Boyd’s early-season struggles are becoming problematic for the Detroit Tigers.

Entering the 2020 season, Matthew Boyd was deemed to be the ace of the Detroit Tigers staff.  His first two starts for the Tigers have been atrocious, leaving fans to scratch their heads.  Boyd just a year ago became one of the Tigers top trade chips, yet general manager Al Avila opted to hold out playing the stock market hoping his play would excel, and his stock would rise.  It’s been the exact opposite.

Last year Avila balked at the opportunity to pull the trigger on a deal, particularly with the New York Yankees, who saught a left-hander at the MLB trade deadline.  As usual, Avila’s asking price became to steep for the New York brass, and the Yankees looked elsewhere, adding J.A. Happ from their divisional rival Toronto Blue Jays.  Things haven’t gone well for Happ in 2020 either.  He’s made one start yielding four runs on four hits, including a pair of home runs in just four innings of work.

It appears Avila had hoped to acquire standout second baseman Gleyber Torres in a deal that included Boyd.  A general manager needs to always shoot for the stars, but Torres, at just 24-years old, is surging towards being one of the best second basemen in all of baseball.  That’s a tough request, especially when Boyd would be slated as New York’s fourth or fifth starter.

Al Avila needed to settle for someone like third baseman Miguel Andujar, a 25-year old, third baseman still providing plenty of potential.  In 2018, his first full season in the bigs, Andujar crushed 27 home runs, drove in 97 while hitting .285 for the Yankees.  Last season limited due to injuries, Andujar played in just 12 games hitting just .125 without hitting a long-ball or driving in a run.  The third baseman is off to a slow start in 2020, making only eight plate appearances hitting a mere .125.  The Detroit Tigers clearly need a third baseman, and with Gio Urshela taking over the position in New York, it leaves Andujar expendable, and someone Avila needed to pursue.

Unlike Jeimer Candelario and Dawel Lugo, Andujar is proven to hit at the Major League level.  Since the first half of the 2019 season, Boyd’s stock continues to plummet.  Not only should he not be considered Detroit’s current ace, but he’s also the teams’ third-best starter after two times through the rotation behind Spencer Turnbull and Ivan Nova.

Boyd’s made two starts in 2020, producing 7.20 era with a WHIP of 1.700.  He’s allowed 15 hits through 10 innings while striking out eight en route to a 0-1 record.  Boyd doesn’t become a free agent until 2022, so hopefully, he catches fire once again, and Avila isn’t hesitant to pull the trigger on a deal.