USA Today's Bob Nightengale says to keep an eye on a possible three-way trade involving the Tigers (Edwin Jackson), the Mariners (Brandon Morrow) and a third mystery team. Here's the link to Nightengale's tweet:
I wonder if we might be the mystery team? If so, I can see Arroyo going to the Mariners, Jackson coming our way, and Morrow and a Reds player (Gomes?, Burton?) bound for Detroit. Why it's possible?
Mariners need starting pitching and want a steady and reliable veteran to eat innings. They supposedly have $30-$40 million to spend this off-season, so picking up Arroyo's $11 million still leaves them with lots of maneuvering room to obtain the other pieces they need to make a strong pennant run. They're giving up little in the deal, just absorbing salary.
Tigers trade a pitcher probably due an arbitration raise to $4-$5 Million in return for two younger promising pitchers (Morrow, Burton), or a pitcher (Morrow) coupled with a cheap DH for 2010 (Gomes). They are lacking a DH and reports indicate they don't really have the money to acquire one of the available DH free-agent candidates.
Finally, the Reds, in Jackson would get a modestly paid SP receiving less than half of what Arroyo would earn for the season. True, Jackson hasn't proven himself as durable or steady as Arroyo. Should he falter, no great shakes. Volquez will be back mid-season. But if Jackson soars, along with Cueto and Bailey, and we also get Volquez back, wow! What a great nucleus for a young, powerhouse pitching rotation.
Whether we were contending or not, the future would look bright. In contention, we let veteran Harang lead the young turks to glory. Out of contention, we move Harang come July, stocking up on whatever missing piece or pieces (C, SS) we might need to compete in earnest for 2011.