In need of a starter with Anibal Sanchez and Daniel Norris going on the disabled list today, the Tigers have acquired Randy Wolf from the Blue Jays for cash considerations. The veteran left-hander will start against the Rangers on Saturday, which is also his 39th birthday.
After making six appearances (four starts) with the Marlins last season, Wolf has pitched exclusively in the minors this season while putting up a 2.58 ERA and 106/40 K/BB ratio in 139 2/3 innings over 23 starts with Triple-A Buffalo. With no clear opening on the major league roster, he requested his release earlier this week. Things ended up working out pretty well for him.
The Tigers will be Wolf’s eight major league team. As Jason Beck of MLB.com notes, Tigers managers Brad Ausmus previously caught Wolf in three starts from 2008-2009 when they were teammates with the Astros and Dodgers. The dynamic will be a little different this time around.
Tigers right-hander Anibal Sanchez, who has a long history of shoulder injuries, has been placed on the disabled list with a rotator cuff strain.
Sanchez has struggled for much of the season, but he’s been particularly bad recently while allowing 17 runs in 20 innings this month. Knowing the 31-year-old’s injury history and the fact that he’s still owed another $38 million for the next two years it’s possible the Tigers will simply decide to shut Sanchez down for the season.
In the third year of a five-year, $80 million contract, Sanchez has worked 182, 126, and 157 innings for Detroit while posting ERAs of 2.57, 3.43, and 4.99. Like much of the Tigers’ aging core, he’s very expensive and trending in the wrong direction.
Remember that time Twins outfielder Torii Hunter disrobed in protest of his ejection from a game? And then was suspended two games for it? Tigers starter Anibal Sanchez — a teammate of Hunter’s in Detroit in 2013 and ’14 — jokingly mocked it as Hunter took batting practice prior to Friday night’s game.
Joe Davis of FOX Sports has video:
Sanchez pitched on Wednesday, so he won’t be starting in the three-game weekend set against the Twins. Hunter, however, will be in the lineup in an attempt to exact revenge against his former team.