DFA'd Veteran Shocked; Loses Out On Bonuses

"I didn't think they were going to do that to me." Those were some of the words spoken by nine-year veteran right-hander Michael Pineda, who was DFA'd by the Detroit Tigers today just 3.1 innings shy of a $375,000 bonus.

It's not something that manager AJ Hinch was taking any pleasure in. 

"I hate it for Michael. Nothing worse than telling a veteran of his magnitude and his career that we're moving on from him. But for us, it's time to take a look at the guys that have a better chance of being here."

Put another way, 'we're in last place, we're in rebuild mode, let's let the young kids pitch, and save us some money while we're at it.'

The 33-year-old Pineda is on an expiring contract, and missed plenty of time earlier this season, first with a broken finger, then with triceps tightness. He has pitched just 46.2 innings total. At 50 innings, a $375,000 bonus would have kicked in, and at 75 innings, another $375K.

"I understand the decision," said Pineda, who has struggled to a 5.79 ERA with the Tigers. "But it's September right now, and I didn't think they were going to do that to me. If they wanted to do that, I think they'd want to do it earlier. But I respect the decision, and I understand."

Being September, Pineda would not be eligible for the playoffs for any team that signed him going forward.

The big righty has 180 starts in his career, with 1,008 innings pitched. But all he needed was another 3.1 innings for a good chunk of change in his pocket.


Photos: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports, Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports