Minnesota Twins’ Mike Pelfrey pitches against the Detroit Tigers during the first inning of a baseball game at Comerica Park, Friday, Sept. 25, 2015, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
Duane Burleson
December 04, 2015

DETROIT (AP) Free-agent right-hander Mike Pelfrey has reached a $16 million, two-year agreement with the Detroit Tigers, according to a person with knowledge of the deal.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity Friday because the deal, which was still subject to a successful physical, had not been announced. The 31-year-old Pelfrey would join a Detroit rotation bolstered by the signing of right-hander Jordan Zimmermann less than a week ago.

Pelfrey spent the last three seasons with Minnesota. He went 6-11 with a 4.26 ERA in 2015.

The Tigers have been active this offseason. They've also traded for closer Francisco Rodriguez and outfielder Cameron Maybin.

Detroit finished last this year after winning the AL Central the previous four seasons. The decline was in large part because of the starting rotation's struggles. Justin Verlander didn't find his form until the second half of the season, and Anibal Sanchez finished with a 4.99 ERA.

The Tigers traded David Price at the deadline, receiving left-hander Daniel Norris, a highly regarded prospect.

Pelfrey spent his first seven seasons with the New York Mets, going 50-54 with a 4.36 ERA. The Tigers will have to hope he can stay healthy. Pelfrey was limited to five starts in 2014 because of groin problems, but he made 30 starts in 2015.

Detroit may be done adding to its rotation for the time being. The Tigers could still use some help in the bullpen. They let Al Alburquerque and Neftali Feliz become free agents, declining to tender contracts to the two right-handers.

The Twins finished a surprising second in the AL Central, and Pelfrey was second on the team in starts. He's the second significant free agent to leave the Twins this offseason. Outfielder Torii Hunter retired.

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AP Baseball Writer Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this report.

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