• September 29, 2023

Tigers, outfielder Mazara near deal (sources)

The late-season tide of the Tigers continued Thursday with a name they have been associated with since the Hot Stove season began a few months ago. They agreed to the terms with the former Rangers and White Sox outfielder Nomar Mazara With a one-year contract worth $ 1.75 million, according to sources.

The Athletic’s Cody Stavenhagen first reported that both sides were nearing an agreement. The Tigers didn’t confirm the deal.

The Tigers have had an interest in Mazara over the past few years, including the last off-season when the Rangers traded it for an intermediate-level prospect at the White Sox. Chicago didn’t advertise him in December after hitting a home run, 15 RBIs, and an OPS of .589 .228 (31-for-136), resulting in a 64 OPS +. Mazara’s production declined across the board after four straight seasons with 19-20 home runs and an OPS in Texas in the mid-700s.

Scott Coolbaugh, the New Tigers putt coach, worked with Mazara in Chicago last year, where Coolbaugh was the White Sox putt coach. Mazara won’t turn 26 until April after making his major league debut in Texas at the age of 20 in 2016 after signing in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic five years earlier.

When Mazara is on, left-handed versus right-handed is best, including reasonably low strikeout totals. But his divisions were reversed last year and he only hit .205 (23-for-112) with 34 rashes from right-handers. He went 8-24 against left-handers in very limited time. According to the Statcast, his strike rate rose to 29.5 percent, although his pursuit rate fell. One problem was that he only got 62.2 percent of the spots in the strike zone, two points below his career average and four points below the major league average.

Even so, there were signs of encouragement. His Hit rate According to Statcast, 48.9 percent was in the top 10 percent of major league players, while its average exit speed of 91 mph was a career top and was in the top 18 percent of players.

With a guaranteed contract, he’ll get the chance to build on it despite an overcrowded Tiger outfield. Detroit signed a free agent Robbie Grossman to a two-year deal earlier this off-season and will start him regularly in the left field. Mazara has mostly played right field in his career and could be part of a left-right right field move in Detroit, possibly with switch hitter Victor Reyes or prospect Daz Cameron.

Christin Stewart is also on the list of Tigers, and the team still wants to find a place for Akil Baddoo, the draft rule 5. With Mazara left-handed, Stewart’s chances of winning his role back have likely been significantly reduced.

Mazara joins Grossman, the second baseman Jonathan Schoop and catchers Wilson Ramos in a veteran infusion to the Tigers lineup. Detroit also signed First Baseman Renato Nunez and infielder Greg Garcia Minor league contracts with non-duty rosters invite you to the major league camp. All but Grossman have signed in the past few weeks, with Grossman signing the only multi-year deal in the group.

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