MLB Rumors: Grading 3 items on the Detroit Tigers' offseason wish list

Left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez is likely to opt-out of his contract after the season, and it headlines the list of things the Detroit Tigers will have to worry about this winter.

Detroit Tigers v Cleveland Guardians
Detroit Tigers v Cleveland Guardians / Ron Schwane/GettyImages
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At the trade deadline, the Detroit Tigers had two of the most intriguing trade pieces on the market: right-hander Michael Lorenzen and left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez.

Lorenzen, of course, was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies and, in his second start with the team, he threw a no-hitter against the Washington Nationals. He has since cooled off, as he has a 5.23 ERA in seven starts in Philadelphia.

But before trading Lorenzen, the Tigers almost traded Rodriguez. They were in agreement on a trade to send Rodriguez to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a package of prospects, but the left-hander invoked his no-trade clause and ultimately remained in Detroit. 

Rodriguez determining what his future holds will be the key for the Tigers this offseason. But that is only the beginning of what should be an active winter in Detroit. Here is their offseason wish list, headlined by what to do with Rodriguez.

MLB Rumors: What will happen with Eduardo Rodriguez?

Rodriguez has three years, $49 million remaining on his contract. He holds a player option after this season and could elect to hit free agency. And considering his numbers this season – 3.57 ERA and 133 strikeouts in 138.2 innings – it would appear likely that he’ll opt out of the contract.

Rodriguez has made it clear that he enjoys being in Detroit. That was underscored when he declined a trade to the Dodgers and he doubled down on that recently, saying: “I love the guys here, and I feel like they love me too… I know we have a really good team and we have a really good future over here with the young guys. I want to be part of it and that’s why I decided to stay here too.”

But with his performance, Rodriguez appears headed for a mega-deal in free agency, and could price himself out of the Tigers’ price range. Of course, he values comfort and being close to his family, so it’s possible that he could take less to remain in Detroit. 

But the Tigers shouldn’t get their hopes up for that scenario. Instead, they should start evaluating their options to replace Rodriguez in the offseason.