Tigers Clear Roster Spot by Trading Baugh

The Tigers needed to open up a spot on the 40 man roster before they could officially complete the signing of Kenny Rogers. The Tigers found a way of opening that spot on Monday, as they shipped out former first round pick Kenny Baugh to the Padres for minor league pitcher Ricky Steik.

The loss of Kenny Baugh to the organization is likely one that the former strongholds would be disappointed about, as they were and still are high on the righty. Unfortunately for Baugh, in an organization that puts a premium on velocity, and with high velocity youngsters Roman Colon, Justin Verlander and Joel Zumaya all knocking on the big league door, Baugh's chances in Detroit were limited.

Of course, that all goes back to Baugh's overuse in his pitching days at Rice, where his pitch counts likely could be considered criminal, and are likely cause of why Baugh, who used to hit the mid 90's, now sees his fastball sit around 90, as he has to rely on control and deception to get hitters out.

Baugh finished last year as Toledo's top starting pitcher, where he posted a 12-8 record with a 3.38 ERA in 28 starts for the ‘Hens.

On the receiving end, the Tigers got right handed reliever Ricky Steik, who will turn 22 prior to the start of the '06 season.

Steik was used exclusively as a reliever for Fort Wayne in the Midwest League last year, where he posted an 0-6 record, but with 3 saves and an ERA of 2.40. Steik also struck out 53 batters in his 60 innings of work.

While it is still very early, it's very likely that the Tigers will promote Steik on his current track, meaning he would likely be headed for high-A Lakeland next season, but for a player that the organization just acquired, it's very early to project.

TigsTown will have more on Steik and the loss of Baugh in the coming hours.

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