It was assumed that if the Tigers added three new players at the Winter Meetings, they'd snag a catcher, shortstop, and a reliever, hopefully a closer.
Well, two outta three ain't bad.
But even though Jackson didn't address an obvious need, he's still a young, quality starting pitcher, and was acquired by the Tigers trading from a position of surplus.
In 2008, Jackson worked the entire season in the Rays' rotation, compiling a 14-11 record with a 4.42 ERA. Jackson, whose career ERA is still over five, will likely slide into one of the slots in the back end of the rotation, which wasn't viewed as an obvious need, but was viewed with much skepticism, given the uncertainty of how reliable Dontrelle Willis and Nate Robertson will be.
Jackson has a good arm, but has always battled consistency and control - even in his successful 2008 season, his K:BB ratio was just 1.4.
The Tigers will lost Matt Joyce in the deal, which is unfortunate, as he displayed signs of being a very good player in Detroit. However, given the Tigers surplus of outfielders, as well as having quite a few prospects in the upper levels of the farm system, Joyce was expendable.
Joyce put up 12 home runs and 33 RBI in his first taste of big league action. Prior to his call-up, he was crushing the ball in Triple-A Toledo, posting a .902 OPS.
It is expected that Joyce will join the Rays as the team's everyday right fielder.