The Tigers ship continues to sink, and heading into the trade deadline on Aug. 2, Detroit could be considered sellers in the market, and the Red Sox should keep a close eye on who’s available.
As Boston has found momentum in June, the Tigers have fallen further down in the American League Central standings and are just a half game up over the Kansas City Royals for last place in the division.
Detroit has a bottom five run differential (-100) and have the league’s worst road record (8-21), but the team is not lacking talent. Javier Baez stands out as one of the Tigers’ best batters, but for the Red Sox, there are players who Boston can realistically target in a trade to help bolster the roster to get the team where it wants to go. Here are four possible names worth considering:
Grossman is a switch-hitting outfielder whose contract expires at the end of the year. The 32-year-old has primarily played the corner outfield for the Tigers, but has a history in center field as well, showing his versatility. Through 54 games, Grossman is batting .204/.272/.584 along with two home runs.
Depth in the outfield will be key going into the second-half of the season as Kiké Hernández continues to work his way back from injury. While Jarren Duran and Rob Refsnyder have filled in well, it would not be a detriment to add more depth before it’s needed.
Fulmer will also be a free agent next season, but the right-handed reliver may be a bit pricey — for good reason. The 29-year-old is 2-2 on the year and has struck out 26 batters through 25 innings (25 games) with a 2.16 ERA. Opponents are batting .140/.209/.452 against Fulmer, and he has recorded one save on the year.
Reliever is a position of need for the Red Sox. While pitchers like Michael Wacha, Nick Pivetta and Nathan Eovaldi have the ability to pitch a complete game, they will be needed in the most critical situations and having as many effective relief pitchers as possible can help balance the team out and not provide any added stress come postseason time.
Pineda is a name Red Sox fans might be familiar with. The 33-year old pitched for the New York Yankees from 2014-to-2017. In his rookie year with the Seattle Mariners, he was named an All-Star, but injuries have troubled him in his nine-year career.
His injury history could mean the right hander comes in at a discount. Pineda’s 3.22 ERA through 22 1/3 innings might not be remarkable, but manager Alex Cora and pitching coach Dave Bush could harness Pineda’s talent in concentrated appearances to get the most out of him.
Peralta has been an unsung hero of sorts for the Tigers. The 33-year-old relief pitcher has been called upon as Detroit’s emergency pitcher for in-game injuries throughout the season — something Peralta has described as a “tough spot,” according to Evan Petzold of the Detroit Free Press. Peralta is still taking his role and excelling in it. In 28 1/3 innings, the right hander has posted a career-best 1.91 ERA to go along with 24 strikeouts and a 2-0 record.
Whenever a bullpen game is needed for the Red Sox, Peralta would be the perfect man for the job. Even coming in for multiple innings of relief, Peralta would be a key piece for Boston as it aspires to make a deep run in the postseason.