Results tagged ‘ Rajai Davis ’

Tigers finalizing 2-year deal with Rajai Davis

The Tigers have found their answer in left field, and it’s not the much-rumored, oft-speculated pursuit of Shin-Soo Choo. Instead, they’re prepared to go with a platoon of Andy Dirks and Rajai Davis.

The Tigers spent Tuesday working to complete an agreement with Davis on what is expected to be a two-year contract, according to sources. The team has not confirmed the agreement, as is their policy when a contract is pending a physical. Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca, who first reported an agreement, said the contract will be worth $10 million.

It’s a role signing for a team that was looking to upgrade its offense and saw left field as the one place it could do so. It’ll happen situationally, plugging in the speedy Davis as the right-handed hitting half of a platoon with Dirks, as well as a basestealing option in the late innings of games he doesn’t start. His .294 career average and .354 on-base percentage against lefties, including .319 and .383 last season in a part-time role with the Blue Jays, fits what the Tigers were seeking, though the production often came in streaks.

By contrast, Davis is a .255 career hitter against right-handers, including just .228 (49-for-215) with 48 strikeouts this past season.

At the same time, it’s a philosophical shift for a team that has been short on speed and wary of speedsters in their thirties. Detroit has been neither a basestealing team nor a manufactured offense type of club for several seasons, increasingly focusing their baserunning efforts on hit-and-run and first-to-third plays. The Tigers wouldn’t be signing the 33-year-old Davis for multiple seasons if they didn’t plan to use his greatest asset.

Despite just 108 games and 360 plate appearances, Davis stole 45 bases in 51 attempts in 2013, and he has racked up at least 40 steals in four of the last five seasons. Meanwhile, the Tigers stole 35 bases as a team last season, led by Austin Jackson’s eight.

The deal rules out the Tigers on Choo, if they were ever in it. Though his combination of speed, on-base percentage and arm presented potentially an ideal fit for Detroit, he’s also an ideal fit for a lot of teams. With Jacoby Ellsbury and Robinson Cano off the market, moreover, Choo stands as the top position player left, making him a hot commodity.

Jason Beck

Tigers, Davis nearing 2-year deal

The Tigers are nearing a two-year deal with outfielder Rajai Davis, according to Fox Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi.

Davis, 33, hits right handed and figures to slide into left field, where he will share time with incumbent Andy Dirks, a left-handed hitter.

Davis spent the past three years with the Blue Jays and adds athleticism to the Tigers’ lineup. He’s stolen more than 40 bases in four of the last five years and has 268 in his career.

He is a .268 career hitter over an eight-year career with the Pirates, Giants, A’s and Jays.

This likely takes the TIgers out of the running for free-agent outfielder Shin-Soo Choo.

- Cash Kruth

Roundup: The Tigers have arrived to the GM Meetings

It was the Marlins who staked their claim in Orlando on Tuesday, when they traded Dan Uggla to the Braves and agreed on a three-year contract with John Buck. Wednesday is the day of the Tigers, apparently. The club agreed on a three-year, $16.5 million contract with setup man Joaquin Benoit, according to reports. Also, Detroit is said to be going after power-hitting lefty outfielder/first baseman/potential designated hitter Adam Dunn.
SI.com first reported the two sides were quickly coming together on a
deal, but ESPN.com followed up by saying nothing is imminent just yet.

Here’s more from the second full day of the General Managers Meetings …

* Diamondbacks new general manager Kevin Towers is apparently kicking the tires on a potential trade of franchise player Justin Upton.
The Red Sox, according to USA Today, are said to be the ideal
candidate, but the New York Post wrote that the Marlins and Rays — and
perhaps the Yankees — are prime candidates.

* White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf confirmed to the Chicago Sun-Times that he would’ve let manager Ozzie Guillen go
to the Marlins if they would’ve given up the specific high-level player
he sought. Reinsdorf didn’t say who, but he denied it was Mike Stanton.

* In need of a lefty bat, the White Sox have engaged in talks with Hideki Matsui,
according to SI.com. Matsui expressed interest in a return to the
Angels, but they’d like to keep DH a revolving door with so many
veterans in their lineup. 

* Six to eight teams have spoken to free-agent starter Carl Pavano, according to The Washington Post, which names the Nationals as one of them. The Marlins, a source told MLB.com, are another.

* The Athletics traded speedy outfielder Rajai Davis to the Blue Jays in exchange for Minor Leaguers Trystan Magnuson and Daniel Farquhar, the club announced. Toronto also released right-hander Shawn Hill.

* The Rockies have expressed interest in A’s third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff, according to The Denver Post, which added that Jose Lopez, Jorge Cantu and Ty Wigginton are also on the club’s radar.

* Brandon Webb is also reportedly drawing interest. According to
ESPN.com, the Dodgers, Pirates, Twins and Rangers have shown interest in
the right-hander.

* Seven to eight teams are reportedly interested in Jorge de la Rosa,
who is one of the top free-agent starters once you get past Cliff Lee.
The Rockies are a team that would like to keep him, but not if he gets an offer eclipsing four years.

– Alden Gonzalez

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