3 surging Tigers bullpen arms Yankees should try to steal at deadline

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MINNEAPOLIS, MN – MAY 25: Alex Lange #55 of the Detroit Tigers delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the ninth inning of the game at Target Field on May 25, 2022 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Tigers defeated the Twins 4-2 in ten innings. (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images) /

1. Alex Lange

Alex Lange is the Tigers’ best find of 2022, and he’s also under control all the way through 2027. There’s almost no way Detroit makes him poachable.

And yet … their general manager remains Al Avila, the man who sent Justin Verlander to the Houston Astros after the buzzer that should’ve rendered the trade moot, and received nothing of value in exchange. He was so excited to send Verlander south in exchange for an underwhelming package that he bucked the rules to do so.

So … if the Yankees were to dangle Estevan Florial and a primo chip like Everson Pereira … might that interest Avila, despite the fact that Lange should probably be off limits?

Everything about his profile is enticing after coming over in the Chicago-Detroit trade for Nick Castellanos back in 2019. Lange doesn’t allow too many deep drives to left, however, surrendering just a single home run and 16 walks in 34 innings, striking out 44. He’s also sporting a 2.38 ERA and 1.15 WHIP.

Every underlying metric looks exceptional at the moment, too; from a red-hot 95th percentile average exit velocity to a 99th percentile whiff percentage, Lange looks special. The one thing he doesn’t do so well? Spin either the curveball or the fastball. Sounds like someone could use some time in the Gas Station with Mr. Matt Blake.

A Lange shot is a long shot, but if the Yankees are looking for relief (financial) bargains who can grab hold of a role for the next several seasons, they’d do well to bother the Tigers during their time of need.