Tigers acquire Anthony Gose from Toronto

Hours after the Tigers took care of Victor Martinez, they made another move to address their center-field void. They also made Devon Travis’ reign as the Tigers top prospect an extremely short one.

Detroit’s trade of Travis to Toronto for Gose was their second move Wednesday at a GM Meetings that traditionally serves more as a springboard for moves to happen in the ensuing weeks.

“Anthony is a true center fielder than can provide us with above average defense in center field with a good arm,” Tigers president/general manager David Dombrowski said in a release. “He possesses above average speed and can steal bases at the major league level. He swings the bat from the left side and we feel that he will continue to improve his offensive game.”

After keeping Victor Martinez in a Tigers uniform, center field was the next priority on the Tigers’ list. With the free-agent market thin in center, they decided their best option was a trade with one of the handful of teams with surplus talent in center.

The 24-year-old Gose was available after spending parts of the last three seasons in Toronto. Despite an outstanding ability to cover ground in center and footspeed that produced two 70-steal seasons in the minor leagues, he struggled to find a regular role. He batted .226 this past season with a .311 on-base percentage, a .604 OPS and 15 stolen bases in 94 games, some of them in relief of injured Colby Rasmus.

Gose is a .234 career hitter in 616 Major League at-bats, with more strikeouts (170) than hits (129), and a .259 hitter with a .715 OPS over seven minor-league seasons. Improving that will be the challenge of hitting coach Wally Joyner, among others, and the key to making him the answer to the void in Detroit’s center field. Rajai Davis handled the position down the stretch, and could end up in a lefty-righty platoon with Gose, but is generally seen as a corner outfielder.

If Gose can take the next step and earn the role, the Tigers have five seasons of him become he could become a free agent, and two seasons before he’d be eligible for arbitration. The latter could be huge in managing a payroll that’s on track to eclipse last year’s $163 million mark.

Travis was a high-rising second-base prospect in the Tigers system, hitting at every level since his selection in the 13th round of the 2012 Draft out of Florida State. After batting .350 or better at two Class A levels in 2013, Travis had an injury-shortened 2014 campaign thanks an early-season oblique injury and a season-ending core muscle injury. In between, he batted .298 at Double-A Erie with 20 doubles, seven triples, 10 homers, 52 RBIs, 16 stolen bases and an .817 OPS.

Travis had started playing center field at Erie in August, both to clear the position block he faced at second base and to try to solve the Tigers’ center-field issues created when Austin Jackson was traded to Seattle in the David Price deal a month earlier. He’ll likely go back to the infield in the Blue Jays system.

28 Comments

I don’t understand trading your top prospect for a well below average hitter.

Was wondering the same thing.

Light hitting but defensive upside – good for CoPa…the last two cf’s have been basically the same…two issues solved…now sign Miller and Joba and take the winter off!!!

How would trading Alex benefit the team in 2015? Payroll flexibility to sign Melky, Miller, or both (unlikely)… me thinks.

I don’t know if they gave too much to get Gose, but I do know that “top prospect” is a relative term.

Yes, BA says the same. He was the best because he was part of the Tigers organization

I was looking forward to seeing Travis up here. A shift to CF wasn’t exactly a promising transition though, especially after his two (not to be dismissed) injuries.
Gose can be a very exciting player. And he can really fly.
DD has done what you are supposed to do with prospects——–field a MLB player on your team. Be it the prospect or his reciprocal.
Travis plays the the game the way you want to see a 2nd baseman play it. He could end being very, very good.
Gose will make people forget about Austin Jackson.

Instead of getting a corner OF who can rake….I’d rather fix the bullpen. Preferably Miller, but maybe another LH RP would do.

Could it be that Tigers look at Gose and see Quintin Berry but with much better defense and some potential to improve his hitting?

On a side note, Berry has 11 PAs since the 2012 season with the Tigers. Berry is/was somewhat a better hitter, but I agree…the potential to improve the hitting is key here.

Berry has yet to be caught stealing at MLB level. also pulled the rare feat of more runs scored than ABs last season.

Taking a look at Gose from a fan graphs “Def” stat perspective I notice he was not good defensively with the Blue Jays in 2013 (-4.9), but was very good in 2014 (9.1). Whats the explanation for that? What can we expect?
.
For what it is worth: Q Berry had a -4.4 Def rating in 2012, Rajai was -11 in in 2014, and Torii -25 in 2014. Gose is predicted at +2.8 in 2015 by Steamer.

Tigers should field one of the strongest up the middle defenses next season when Gose and Iglesias are in the lineup. Sparky’s cliche will be tested.

Well, we added Gary Pettis

Gose per full season: 27SB (9CS), 38BB, 136K, .234/.301/.332, .633OPS
Berry per full season: 35SB (0CS), 36BB, 115K, .266/.337/.369, .706OPS

They are completely different animals.
Despite his stats, Berry can’t hit. I would also consider him more of a corner OFer than Gose. IF—Gose can hit he will really help the lineup, the defense, the base-running and run manufacturing,

not sure how one hits without it showing up in the stats, but no worries. Berry is a MLB pinch runner and a good one at that.
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What do ya’ll think about Alex being shopped? Do you think the org knows more (e.g. via his father) about his concussion-related health status than they are advertising (“a clean bill of health”)?

I really like Alex but I would like him a lot more if he could hit .260
Best to him but his days as a receiver are numbered and that is his ony value.

DD, the OF is set for now

Goose is young , Berry was a career AAA player. Goose can grow better. He is a little older than the injured and blocked Travis
Fans wanted the Tigers to be like KC? defense and no bat like most of KC

makes sense to be MORE LIKE KC than the 2014 club. As they were 2nd in MLB in scoring runs, 9th worst in allowing runs….

? Tigers were second in runs scored in MLB behind Colorado. KC 14. The Tigers were the best hitting team in MLB. KC was unable to hit before suddenly , out of the blue, becoming a juggernaut. They were the weakest hitting team in MLB, low hard hit rate( Tigers first) and low slugging %

no no what I am saying is it would be nice to see our defense and bullpen improved. and at the expense of the offense (e.g. replacing torii’s bat) – that is ok with me.

Then, we are on the same page

Perez ,1 for 4 last night. I expect to see him in TV a lot this week. The team will be in Maracaibo for the “Feria de la Chinita”, a secularized religious feast and games are part of the celebration. Most games should be on TV. The team is winning so the bandwagon is full and scalping high, so no visit to the park

He’s on first. And there he Gose!

I say Who’s on first, What’s on second, I Don’t Know’s on third.

Trade/sign Astrubel Cabrera at SS, proven defense, decent bat. Replace Hunter with Melky Cabrera. Opening day 2 thru 6: A. Cabrera, Me Cabrera, Mi Cabrera, v. Martinez, J Martinez! Not bad.

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