Tigers trade for Veras from Houston
The Tigers found their relief help from what used to be a familiar trading partner for them, acquiring Jose Veras from the Astros Monday morning for outfield prospect Danry Vasquez and a player to be named later.
The move gives Detroit the experienced right-handed arm they were seeking while adding an option at closer on days Joaquin Benoit is off.
In a statement, team president/GM Dave Dombrowski said the 32-year-old Veras “can pitch in a variety of roles, provides depth in the bullpen, and complements the roles of Joaquin Benoit and Drew Smyly.”
In other words, Benoit will retain the closer role, where he has thrived for the past month, will Smyly will continue to see some setup work. Manager Jim Leyland confirmed as much Monday morning, saying Veras will primarily work in the seventh and eighth innings but could close on occasion if situations call for it.
“I like it. I like it a lot,” Leyland said of the move. “I think Dave did a great, great job. It doesn’t surprise me. We think he’s pretty good. We saw him earlier this year.”
Tigers fans might remember Veras for the go-ahead home run Alex Avila hit off of him in the ninth inning May 3 in Houston. Veras has thrived since then, allowing 17 hits over 31 innings with 10 walks, 30 strikeouts and a .162 batting average.
It’s the first trade the Tigers and Astros have pulled off since 2001, when Randy Smith was the GM in Detroit and Tal Smith was an executive in Houston. Yet it’s very much a Dave Dombrowski style of deadline deal. Faced with a glaring need at a position where prices were high, Dombrowski went for the quiet addition for a lower cost over the glamour deal.