What? No way. The guy is untouchable. He had a fantastic season. He has a super bright future. 24 year old lefthanded starter. 4.34 era... 9.9 k/9... the guy has future stud written all over him. He will be the Frank Tanana to Casey Mize's Nolan Ryan.
Well, if the guy is considered this good, wouldn't other teams pay through the nose to get him? Every team is looking for healthy young controllable starting pitching. Skubal is about as healthy and young and controllable as they come. Why not see what other teams would pay? Why not see if they can fill multiple positions with talent at the cost of a 9th round pick from a couple years ago? Who wouldn't flip a 9th round pick for multiple major league starters?
Heck, a team like the Mets might send 3 starters for him... Skubal would fit in as their number 3 starter behind Mt Olympus starters deGrom and Scherzer and then followed by veterans Carrasco and Walker. The Tigers might be able to get OF/2B/3B McNeil, MI Guillorme and LHP Peterson from them. McNeil is an OBP machine that can play multiple positions... he has been bumped to the bench by the signing of Edwardo Escobar. Guillorme is a young infielder known for his defense and he bats left handed and hits righties really well. David Patterson is a lefthanded starter that had an amazing year in 2020... think about how well Skubal did in 2021 and Patterson was better at the same age as Skubal (3.44 era, 1.208 whip, 125 era+). In 2021, Patterson had a few bumps in the road, but still had a nice k/9 rate 9.3. If Patterson can replicate 2020, he would be an improvement over Skubal.
The Dodgers would love a controllable starter for the next 5 years. They could send Inf Gavin Lux, CF Bellinger, 1B/OF/3B Matt Beaty and LHP Victor Gonzales. Lux is a 2B/SS who can play CF if needed. He was a top prospect that has had some difficulty taking that next step. Bellinger was a ROY and MVP player that had a bad year. He was injured also. He could very well return to MVP status being healthy. Beaty is a great bench player that could benefit from regular playing time. Gonzales found himself bumped to the pen in a very deep Dodger rotation. He's only 26 and could step in to Skubal's spot or he could be used from the pen where he has done extremely well.
Both trades pass the trade simulator FWIW.
There are no guarantees that Skubal will be the Frank Tanana that we envision. He may end up being another Dan Schatzeder. A guy with one great year and a bunch of not so great years. He was a 9th round pick after all.
Again, I would love Skubal to be the next amazing starter in the league. I don't foresee Skubal being traded because I think the Tigers do see a future star in the making and would rather find other ways to improve the team. But, I think they should be open to trading pretty much anyone. They have a very solid farm system now and there may be another Skubal in there somewhere.
If we look back 3 years from now and Skubal is middle relieving in the Tiger pen because he never was able to take that next step... remember this post.