Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman is reporting that free agent pitcher Freddy Garcia has agreed to a contract with the Detroit Tigers. Terms of the deal have not yet been announced. More details will be posted as they become available.
If Garcia's intention was to sign with a team in the playoff race, choosing the Tigers is a curious move. But maybe Detroit showed the most interest and pursued him aggressively. Or perhaps Garcia sees himself being able to make a greater contribution on a pitching staff in need of a solid starter. Or maybe he just wanted to join his old buddy Carlos Guillen again. (They were teammates with the Mariners, and came up together through the Astros' system.)
According to Heyman, the scouts who watched Garcia throw last week thought he looked good, but his velocity indicated (84-86 m.p.h) that his arm strength isn't quite there yet. Garcia had surgery to repair a torn labrum last year.
In 2007, Garcia only started 11 games for the Phillies due to injuries. He posted a 1-5 record. The season before that, however, Garcia went 17-9 with the White Sox. His career record is 117-76, with a 6-2 postseason mark.
So whose spot does Garcia get when he's ready?
Thanks to the BYB reader who just e-mailed me with the information. Identify yourself in the comments and accept your due praise.
It's never boring around here, is it?
UPDATE (3 p.m.): This is about as low-risk a transaction as you can make. Garcia signed a minor-league contract with the Tigers that runs until the end of 2008. He'll report to Lakeland, where he'll probably work until around August 31. If Garcia is on the major league roster by September 1, he'll be eligible for post-season play. (Stop laughing!)
Meanwhile, how good does that Lakeland staff look right now? Dontrelle Willis and Freddy Garcia? Maybe the Flying Tigers could give the Washington Nationals a tough game. Willis might be on his way to Toledo, however, to take over for the now-injured Eddie Bonine. (Hat tip to Detroit Tigers Thoughts.)