The New York Yankees have traded lefty reliever Justin Wilson to the Detroit Tigers over pitchers Luis Cessa and Chad Green. The power lefty player is expected to do some reinforcements for the Tigers.
After a month of negotiations, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman and Tigers general manager Al Avila came to an agreement. Avila sounded pleased to announce that they will get Wilson in their team. He said the lefty player can attack hitters, which is an area where the Tigers are lacking for years.
"He's a power lefty that can dominate," he said in a statement published in Detroit Free Press.
According to manager Brad Ausmus, they expect the combination of Wilson and Mark Lowe will serve set-up roles for the recently acquired pitcher Francisco Rodriguez, who had 2.21 ERA and 38 saves this 2015 season.
After acquiring Wilson, the bulk of the Tigers' offseason work is done. However, a report from ESPN says the club is still mulling over the possibility of getting another bullpen arm.
Yankees agreed to the Wilson trade to add starting pitching depth at Triple-A to protect an uncertain major league rotation. On other hand, the Tigers want to have a steady reliever to improve their next games.
The pursuit of Wilson began before the general managers' gathering last month, according to Avila. On Wednesday afternoon, the negotiations proceed and it was finalized before 7 p.m.
The team described the trade as the best option at the time. "We felt that he was the guy that we wanted. And then we pursued it," Avila said in the same article from Detroit Free Press.
"In Wilson, the Tigers will receive the lefty setup man they've been seeking and do so at what should be an affordable rate. Wilson is controllable for three seasons via the arbitration process," Steve Adams of MLTBTradeRumors.com commented.
Wilson will likely serve a seventh-inning role, but is an option to be used in the eighth inning against left-handers in place of the recently acquired Mark Lowe when the matchups dictate.
Wilson, 28, had a 3.10 ERA in 74 games for the Yankees last season. He struck out 66 batters in 61 innings with a 1.13 WHIP. During four big-league seasons, he posted 3.03 ERA.
With his age, Wilson could theoretically play at the prime of his career in Detroit. That is a welcome news for the Tigers after their bullpen finished a dismal 27th in the league in bullpen ERA in 2015.
The lefty reliever is expected to earn $1.3 million, and he is already arbitration-eligible, so he is not eligible for free agency until 2019.