Detroit Tigers claim left-hander Zach Logue off waivers from Oakland Athletics

Detroit Free Press

Left-hander Zach Logue wasn’t sharp as a rookie for the Oakland Athletics last season, but in two starts against the Detroit Tigers, the 26-year-old dominated MLB’s worst offense.

Those two matchups consisted of seven scoreless innings with six strikeouts May 11 at Comerica Park and six innings of three-run (one unearned) ball with four strikeouts July 21 at Oakland Coliseum; in all, he had a 1.38 ERA with 10 strikeouts and one walk over 13 innings against the Tigers.

On Friday, the Tigers claimed Logue — a 2017 ninth-round draft pick from Kentucky — off waivers from the Athletics. In a corresponding move, right-handed reliever Ángel De Jesus was designated for assignment.

UPDATE: Looking at what’s left for Tigers as free-agent market runs dry

Logue was called up for his MLB debut in April 2022 and pitched 14 games (10 starts) for the Athletics, producing a 6.79 ERA with 20 walks and 42 strikeouts in 57 innings. He had a 6.20 ERA in 49⅓ innings as a starter and a 10.57 ERA in 7⅔ innings as a reliever.

He also pitched for Triple-A Las Vegas last season, registering an 8.12 ERA with 38 walks and 59 strikeouts in 78⅔ innings across 17 starts.

Logue threw four pitches in the majors last season: a four-seam fastball (49.2% of the time), a cutter (21.4%), a curveball (15.8%) and a changeup (13.6%). His fastball averaged 90.1 mph and was crushed by most opponents.

“We didn’t respond well to his (arm) angle,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said May 11, after Logue twirled his gem at Comerica Park. “We didn’t have multiple at-bats in a row that were productive. It looked like we could get a few things going, and then he was in complete control. He did a good job of pitching with the lead by continuing to throw strikes.”

That 9-0 loss was the Tigers’ 15th in 18 games at the time, dropping them to 9-22 overall. They ended the season with a 66-96 record for fourth place in the American League Central.

“We should be better, and we will be better,” Hinch said May 11. “It feels like it’s never going to end because of how long this has lasted. These guys have a track record. I know it’s the same questions every night. It’s the same curiosities. We have not found solutions. Rather than talk about problems, we got to try to find some solutions. The energy was good to start the game, and then you could feel a little bit of frustration sink in as we fell behind, and then this kid was having his way with us.”

Logue began his professional career with the Toronto Blue Jays.

He was traded to the Athletics in March 2022 with Gunnar Hoglund, Kevin Smith and Kirby Snead in exchange for three-time Gold Glove-winning third baseman Matt Chapman.

The Athletics designated Logue for assignment Wednesday upon signing right-hander Drew Rucinski — who spent the past four seasons as one of the best starters in the Korea Baseball Organization — to a one-year, $3 million contract.

The Tigers claimed catcher Mario Feliciano off waivers Wednesday from the Milwaukee Brewers. Infielder Andy Ibáñez, another member of the Tigers’ roster, was claimed off waivers in mid-November from the Texas Rangers.

The 40-man roster is full.

Contact Evan Petzold at epetzold@freepress.com or follow him on Twitter @EvanPetzold.

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