Sunday, November 6, 2011

Gr8: #5 Doug Fister, The Steal From Seattle

The “Great Eight of 2011” will be a look at the eight Tigers that impressed me the most in 2011. The order I am choosing these players in is not necessarily who the best overall player was. No, these guys are simply the ones that made me say “wow” more than anyone for whatever reason.

When your team goes looking for an impact starter to add to their rotation at the trade deadline for the stretch run, you might initially think that getting a guy with a 3-12 record wouldn’t be the best of strategies.

But the acquisition of Doug Fister in 2011 by the Detroit Tigers is the greatest example ever that a win-loss record is the last thing you should be paying attention to when evaluating a pitcher. Somewhere Joe Morgan weeps.

Fister was nothing short of amazing after arriving from the Seattle Mariners in DD’s greatest move of the year. He went 8-1 in 11 regular season games as a Tiger with a microscopic 1.79 ERA, 229 ERA+, 0.839 WHIP, and an 11.40 K/BB ratio. Even Justin Verlander has to tip his cap to those numbers.

And what did we give up for him (and relief pitcher that Jim Leyland didn’t like, David Pauley)?

-Casper Wells, whose ceiling seems to be as a 4th outfielder
-Soft-tossing someday 5th starter-at-best Charlie Furbush
-Young fireballing reliever baptized by bases loaded fire, Chance Ruffin.
-Minor league 3rd baseman Francisco Martinez, who is expendable due to the presence of Nick Castellanos

Only Ruffin is a potential loss in my bloodshot eyes.

But as I said, Fister is beyond worth it. He’s young. He’s awesome. He has a last name that is worth a thousand puns to a stupid blog such as mine. He is cost-controlled for a few more years. And he can handle the pressure of being Robin to Verlander’s Batman.

I can’t believe Seattle was so willing to let him go. Yeah, he was 3-12, but that’s because their offense resembled something you’d expect out of the 2003 Tigers. He had a 3.33 ERA at the time of the trade after putting up a 2.83 ERA in 2010 in 216+ innings for them. If I were a Mariner fan, I would probably be arrested for trying to murder their GM with a pitching wedge. I would also probably be Japanese, which would make me better at math, which would have probably helped me do better in college.


I remember many people being against the trade at the time due to the sour taste left in their mouths over Jarrod Washburn coming from the M’s in 2009 and being awful. (They forget that we gave up useless lefty Luke French in the trade…no big loss.) These are the same people that are currently freaking out over Ian Casselberry’s recent suggestion of exploring a trade with the Braves for Martin Prado because they feel the Braves “won” previous trades with the Tigers.

I’m becoming convinced that a large group of Tigers fans are fucking mental patients. Just because a trade with a team doesn’t work out in your favor once, that doesn’t mean you never trade with that team again. To think that is the reasoning of someone that should be locked in a padded room with those people that think the baby Jesus is telling them to urinate on a salad bar in a Ruby Tuesday.

Luckily, Dave Dombrowski is not only a sane man, but he’s a smart one, too. He was able to steal Fister from the M’s and solidify the Tigers rotation for not only 2011, but for years to come.

Can Fister keep up his late 2011 pace? I doubt it. He’s not Bob Gibson. But as long as he can come close to those numbers and just be Doug Fister out there, the Tigers have a phenomenal #2 or #3 pitcher to join JV, Mad Max, and Kid Rick as a big four hopefully approaching what the Braves had in the 90’s with Maddux, Glavine, Smoltz, and Avery/Millwood.

Best trade ever. (Well, since the Cabrera one, at least.) Well done, Double D.


Baroque said...

He is also a hilarious source of cliches. That quiet attitude merely adds to the awesomeness.


Jay Hathaway said...

Fister is a beast.  Love that over-the-top delivery.  sound mechanics, and best of all--command! (gasp!) 

I would kick 3 or 4 asses to get Prado in our lineup.  A career .297ish hitter who would only cost us about 3 mil/year?  Sheeeit.  That might actually make me stop missing Polly.

H2OPoloPunk said...

I just love his height. He's got to be an imposing figure on the mound, and he's a very cerebral pitcher. I look for him to be wearing the olde English D for many years to come.

If he didn't come with a built-in nickname, I'd have to call him "The Giraffe." Good thing I don't, though, because that's a terrible nickname.

ROAR! I'M A Dawg said...

As a Mariner fan I watched in anticipation from when he was in the Minors. I knew he was going to be something special. With a name like that, how could he not. He became one of my favorite players when he was "inserted" into the rotation. He played phenomenal and did not deserve the lowest run support in the majors. It was a great trade on your part and I wish him and y'all the best.