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Diamondbacks interested in Dontrelle Willis

The assumption on the market for Dontrelle Willis is that there was no market for Dontrelle Willis.

Why would anyone want to actually give up something for an awful pitcher who will soon be available at prorated league minimum cost?

Well, the Arizona Diamondbacks and their general manager seem to run counter to that thought process.

MLB.com reporter Steve Gilbert wrote that Arizona has confirmed interest in the struggling left-hander.

We are at least considering him," D-backs general manager Josh Byrnes said Monday.

That was as far as Byrnes would go, except to say that he has had discussions with Detroit regarding Willis.

But maybe Byrnes isn't completely nuts.

Fangraphs.com's Matthew Carruth thinks whatever team in the NL does end up with Willis -- if, of course, it is a team in the NL -- could get some decent production.

The odds that he starts putting up mid-3 FIPs again are remote, but I can envision some roughly league average performances in the NL and for the league minimum, Willis might shift from being one of the biggest sunk costs in baseball to actually a valuable investment.

It makes sense that a National League team would take a flyer on Willis, of course. It's quite likely the Diamondbacks were just exploring the possibility of moving to the front of that line by giving up some organizational filler to the Tigers.

On other fronts, the Mets are said to have no interest, according to the NY Daily News writer Andy Martino. The Marlins have "mild interest" says the Palm Beach Post. (via MLB Trade Rumors).

If Detroit GM Dave Dombrowski manages to avoid paying Willis the remaining amount of his contract, good for him. That's probably not going to happen. So I guess if he manages to get anything at all in return, good for him.

Willis' agent Matt Sosnick just wants his client to have a fresh start, he told MLB.com's Jason Beck.

"If anything's going to get him back, it's going to be a fresh start."

Willis already has a home in the Phoenix area, so all the better if he becomes a Diamondback, I guess.

In other news:

  • There was a lot of thought that phenom Stephen Strassburg could make his MLB debut against the Tigers, or at least face them during a second start. The Nationals say he will debut June 8, so the Tigers will miss him if he pitches on routine rest. If you really want to see him, he should be starting June 13 at Cleveland, so make the drive. If he gets pushed back a day, however, he'll be pitching in Detroit. (Det News)
  • Fangraphs.com had more about Max Scherzer's 14 strikeout performance on Sunday.
  • Lee looked at Miguel Cabrera's triple crown numbers.
  • Zach Miner's Tommy John surgery was successful.
  • During the rain delay, Dallas Braden impersonates Todd Jones impersonating Magglio Ordonez's famous 2006 home run trot. (Via Athletics Nation)
  • At Eye of the Tigers, Paul writes Roy Oswalt would be nice to acquire, but a batter like Stephen Drew or Hanley Ramirez would be better. (Hanley Ramirez? Duh) If not that, then he'd prefer Cliff Lee.