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Tigers reportedly sign veteran Francisco Liriano

February 23, 2018 GMT

Tampa, Fla. — General manager Al Avila always has left the door open to signing another veteran starting pitcher.

He made his move on Friday. According to a report by FanRagSports.com, the Tigers signed veteran Francisco Liriano to a one-year, $4-million contract. It was initially uncertain if that salary was conditional on him making the big-league roster.

The Tigers’ starting pitching depth is thin. And three starters competing for spots have minor-league options remaining – Daniel Norris, Buck Farmer and Ryan Carpenter.

Also, Jordan Zimmermann is trying to regain his form after two injury-plagued seasons and Mike Fiers, whom they signed to a one-year, $6 million deal, is also looking for a bounce-back year.

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Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire and bullpen coach Rick Anderson are certainly familiar with Liriano. They brought him to the big leagues with the Twins and he pitched seven seasons there. But at 34, this isn’t the same pitcher.

Liriano is coming off two rough seasons. Although his fastball velocity remained firm (92 mph), his command was shaky. Moving from Pittsburgh to Toronto and to Houston, he posted a 5.05 ERA and 1.5 WHIP. His walks per nine innings were an untenable 4.8.

The Tigers have not yet confirmed this signing.

cmccosky@detroitnews.com

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