Part of the haul from the trade that sent David Price to Toronto, who brought back both Matt Boyd and Daniel Norris (plus a lefty relief prospect). Norris enjoyed a nice 69-inning sample, but back and oblique injuries kept him from a larger inning count. Thankfully, he did log another 86 innings in the minors, so if performance and health allow it, he'll be ready for a full season in 2017. His 93 mph fastball was eighth-best among lefties who threw at least 60 innings as a starter ahead of luminaries like Clayton Kershaw, David Price, and Chris Sale. Of course, pitching is more than velocity, but it's a good start. The fastball needs to improve versus righties (too many homers) if he wants to cut into the 152-point OPS platoon split, but he showed enough with the slider, changeup, and curve to justify the No. 2/No. 3 starter upside he was tabbed with as a prospect. Buy.
Norris struggled with his command in his spring training debut Tuesday, throwing 40 pitches (21 for strikes) in 1.2 innings, MLB.com reports. Norris' stuff looked good and he didn't allow any runs, but his control was inconsistent. "Sometimes you go out there and you feel like you haven't thrown in forever, so you have to figure something out," Norris said. "You're kind of making stuff up as you go." The young lefty figures to open the season as Detroit's No. 4 starter, but he'll have to be more efficient with his pitches to be successful.
Norris will start Friday against the Braves. Norris will now take the mound Friday, as his scheduled Thursday start versus the Indians has been postponed. Norris has put together a solid showing for the month of September, having posted a 3.13 ERA and 1.13 WHIP over four games.
Norris won't pitch Thursday against the Indians as the game was postponed due to adverse field conditions. Courtesy of heavy rain, Thursday's game had been delayed for over four hours before finally being postponed. The game will be played Monday if needed, as the Tigers may have a chance to earn a Wild Card spot for the 2016 playoffs. However, it's unknown whether or not Norris would start said game for the Tigers.
Norris gave up two earned runs on six hits and two walks over 5.2 innings in a Saturday no-decision versus the Royals. He struck out six. He was in line for the victory until the the normally reliable Francisco Rodriguez imploded in the ninth and gave up five runs to the Royals. Norris fired 64 of 100 pitches for strikes while also notching an impressive 16 swinging strikes during his time on the mound. The 23-year-old has put together a string of solid starts since his return to the major league club on Aug. 9, pitching at least five innings and giving up no more than three earned runs in his nine appearances over that span. Norris will try to wrap up his season in positive fashion when he takes on the Indians next Thursday.
Norris went 6.1 innings of two-run ball Monday, allowing five hits and two walks while fanning 11 but taking the no-decision as the Tigers rallied late to beat the Twins 4-2. All 11 of Norris's strikeouts were swinging, as the young left-hander kept the Twins in check for most of the night. Still, the Tigers were trailing when Norris left the game in the seventh thanks to a pair of solo homers from Brian Dozier and Kurt Suzuki. The 11 strikeouts were easily a career-high at the major league level for Norris, who had a K/9 rate of 9.85 in the minor leagues. The 105 pitches and 6.1 innings were season-highs for Norris, who now has a 3.81 ERA over 10 starts for the Tigers in 2016.