On Tuesday, the Detroit Tigers officially signed RHP Michael Lorenzen to a one-year deal. He will be a part of the starting rotation after a full season as a starter with the Angels. Prior to that, he pitched out of the bullpen for six of the seven seasons he was in Cincinnati.
What sold Tigers President of Baseball Operations Scott Harris on Lorenzen?
“Michael is a double plus athlete, he can do a lot some things on the mound that not many other starting pitchers can do in our game. I think that helps him makes adjustments easy and second, he can get outs in a variety of ways, he can miss bats, he can induce chase, he can get groundballs, he can induce soft contact, he can keep the ball in the ballpark, he does a lot of things we value in this organization and we think there’s more in there, we think he’s just scratching the surface as a starter”
“I was struck by the alignment between our two visions, I was struck by his passion for getting better. He always looking for a way to get better, always look to make an adjustment, to get a bring more performance out of him, and that is the type of mentally we want in our clubhouse at all times. “
What sold Lorenzen was the coaching staff the Tigers have assembled:
“I want a group of coaches around me that are going to support me in getting better each and every day and I feel like this coaching staff is definitively going to do that”.
As far as the Tigers starting rotation goes, Harris said he felt good about the rotation, noting that the addition of Spencer Turnbull back to the rotation felt like the Tigers were adding a third starter after Boyd and Lorenzen.
What will Lorenzen’s pitching plan look like in 2023?
Lorenzen discussed less sinker and cutter and working with the pitching staff to develop more swing and miss stuff. His best two pitches that draw the most swings and misses according to Baseball Savant is a changeup and a slider. The slider has some sweeping action to it and generated a Whiff% of 35.2. He also throws a “bullet slider” which is described as a ball that moves gyroscopically.
The starting rotation looks to be set, according to Harris. Depending on what depth chart you look at, the rotation looks to be Rodriguez, Boyd, Lorenzen, Turnbull and Manning with Wentz, Brieske, Faedo and Olson as far as depth beyond the starting five who are on the 40-man roster.
When asked about the boxes left to check until spring training, Harris said part of the broader strategy is to strengthen the pitching and defense while addressing the offense.
“The quickest way to stabilize a team is building a collection of starters to win every night and building a defense to catch the ball every night”
With the signing of Lorenzen, Detroit does not have to rush up the development of starters like Flores or Madden. So what’s next for the Tigers to add? We shall see how they will address third base or add another bat to the outfield.
Who’s playing 3rd for the Tigers in 2023?
The Detroit Tigers turn on the stove
Photo Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports