Detroit Tigers finally trade away starting pitcher Mike Fiers
By NOAH TRISTER
AP Baseball Writer
Mike Fiers may end up with another chance to pitch in the postseason.
The Oakland Athletics acquired the right-hander from the Detroit Tigers on Monday for two players to be named or cash. The 33-year-old Fiers is 7-6 with a 3.48 ERA this season.
Fiers was with the World Series champion Astros last year, but he was not included on any of Houston’s postseason rosters. He did make one relief appearance for the Astros in the 2015 Division Series.
The rebuilding Tigers picked Fiers up before the season on a $6 million, one-year contract, and he pitched well enough that he became a candidate to be traded to a contender.
Detroit traded outfielder Leonys Martin to Cleveland, and general manager Al Avila said last week that Oakland and Milwaukee had shown interest in Fiers. But the Tigers weren’t able to work out a deal before the non-waiver trade deadline.
Now the Tigers have sent Fiers to an Oakland team that, if the season ended now, would be the American League’s second wild card.
“There’s always opportunity in August,” Avila said Monday. “There’s going to be plenty of players that were available at the deadline that were not traded.”
The A’s have had 12 different pitchers make at least one start this year. Sean Manaea is 10-7 with a 3.38 ERA, and Trevor Cahill has been solid when healthy. Oakland recently added veteran Edwin Jackson, who is 3-2 with a 2.87 ERA in eight starts for the A’s.
Fiers enters that mix, and he’s enjoyed a nice stretch of late. He’s 2-2 with a 1.96 ERA over his last seven starts.
“Mike is happy to get an opportunity to go pitch in a playoff race, and we’re losing a really good pitcher that did a lot of good things here for us,” Detroit manager Ron Gardenhire said in Anaheim before the Tigers opened a three-game series against the Angels. “So now we’ve got to fill a hole, but I’m happy for him to get this opportunity. It’s a pretty nice time to pitch in the playoffs, and on a run like this, and try to win a World Series ring, so good for him.”