6:42pm: The Tigers have announced the signing.
3:39pm: The Tigers are closing in on a two-year, $10MM agreement with free-agent outfielder Robbie Grossman, Cody Stavenhagen and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic report. The pact will also include performance bonuses for Grossman, a Lagardere Sports client.
Detroit will be the fourth team for Grossman, a sixth-round pick in 2008 who has played in the bigs with the Astros, Twins and Athletics. Grossman played a small portion of his career in Houston under then-manager A.J. Hinch, who is now the Tigers’ skipper.
Grossman and Hinch will now reunite, and the 31-year-old switch-hitter will bring a lifetime batting line of .252/.350/.380 with 50 home runs and 37 stolen bases in 2,748 plate appearances to his new team. While Grossman has been a roughly league-average offensive player throughout his career, he hasn’t graded out as well in the outfield, where he has combined for minus-19 Defensive Runs Saved and a minus-18.9 Ultimate Zone Rating among all three positions.
Last season may have been a career offensive year for Grossman, who batted .241/.341/.482 (126 wRC+), hit eight homers and stole eight bases across 192 PA to conclude his A’s tenure. The majority of Grossman’s season was spent in left field, where the Tigers mostly deployed Christin Stewart in 2020. But Stewart and primary right fielder Daz Cameron had rough years, leaving the Tigers with a need in the corners. The hope is that Grossman will provide it, and his track record of getting on base suggests he’ll improve an offense that posted the league’s third-worst OBP (.303) last season.