When asked if Porcello was the front runner for the 5th spot in the rotation, the Tigers' GM stated the team was "set in the first four starters," then had a few money quotes:
You have two guys you think can both start, and they're both in a spot where they're coming to camp to battle for the 5th spot. I think you'd have to say Porcello has a leg up because he's got more experience at that point.
But Smyly did such a good job for us last year and ideally you want a left-hander in your rotation, so I don't know which way that would end up going.
But Porcello would have to be a leader. And Rick Porcelo is a fine big league pitcher.
It wasn't his (Porcello's) best year last year, but you are looking at a guy who's won 14 games a couple of times at the big league level but is only 24 years of age.
I can only imagine what Rick Porcello is thinking at the moment. Probably something similar to Bruce Campbell in Army of Darkness: "First you wanna trade me, now you wanna keep me. Blow."