Source: Tigers, Valverde agree to terms

The Tigers are poised to sign the veteran closer they hoped to add. They agreed to terms Thursday with Jose Valverde on a two-year contract with an option for a third, a source close to the negotiation confirmed to MLB.com pending a physical.

Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports first reported the deal, worth $14 million plus a $9 million option for 2012. Tigers officials would neither confirm nor deny the agreement.

By signing the Type A free agent, the Tigers would give up their first-round pick in this summer’s First-Year Player Draft, which would be the 19th overall selection. It would mark the first time since 1991, after the Tigers signed Rob Deer, that Detroit has given up its first-round Draft pick. However, the Tigers have two compensation picks coming at the end of the first round for losing relievers Fernando Rodney and Brandon Lyon to free agency

6 Comments

i always get worried bringing in NL pitchers of any nature, closer, starter, etc…
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in fact i generally feel that way about all NL players.. but pitchers in particular. IMO the AL has far better players and better hitters… i like the move, for sure, as the tigers needed someone that can be their ‘closer’ at the beginning of spring training. i hope he works out and puts my NL-coming-to-AL fears to rest. for now at least.
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mike

Okay, there it is. I know a lot of people think this doesn’t make sense coming on the heels of the December transactions, but it does make sense. I take this as a sign of the direction the club is headed, and takes the sting out of not offering arbitration to Polanco. It’s a good move. I’ll have to stand by that even if Valverde were to fall flat on his face for whatever reason. It’s a good move. Way to go Mr. I, Mr. D, and all concerned
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Now to get a hitter (or two) and we’re good to go. Still need to provide the new man with save opportunities.
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–Rich

Valverde is generally regarded as the best free agent closer available this year. It puts the Tigers in better position and allows the young relief corp to develop another year or two. Closers moving leagues usually have better success than starter. Closers are not throwing to pitchers, so they are not use to that break in the line up.
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Mark

I don’t like how much money the Tigers put into him. I think they should have stuck with Zooms and put the money into locking up Verlander.

Mike
http://mikebarryu.mlblogs.com/

Damon will be 36 this season. I do like his inate ability to drive pitchers (and the pitcher’s fans) crazy. I think he may have benefited from being surrounded by so many star players in New York, and am not so sure his success would translate to Detroit. Anyway, now we’re back to the rumor stage. If I was a betting man, however, my money says we trade for a hitter rather than signing a free agent. If we’re talking trade, anybody could be the target. There might be a big surprise between now and opening day. Or at least a small surprise.
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–Rich

Hey Rich, I saw that the tigers might be going for Damon. How does that sound as far as a hitter goes?

https://twitter.com/SI_JonHeyman/status/7767191879

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