Originally posted on Fox Sports Detroit  |  Last updated 7/23/12
It's deja vu all over again. The Tigers made their move for a second baseman and a starting pitcher on Monday, and there's a familiar face coming back to Detroit. Marlins infielder Omar Infante, who played for the Tigers from 2002-07, is returning to Comerica Park, and he's bringing starting pitcher Anibal Sanchez with him. In return, Detroit is giving up their top pitching prospect, Jacob Turner, catching prospect Rob Brantly and Double-A pitcher Brian Flynn. The move is definitely an attempt to win now, bringing in the 30-year-old Infante and the 28-year-old Sanchez for three prospects in their early 20s. Infante was a good utility infielder in his time with Detroit, but blossomed after being traded to the Cubs for Jacque Jones and then to the Braves during the same winter. He hit .309 in his three seasons with the Braves and was named to the 2010 All-Star team as the National League's top utility player. He moved to the Marlins before the 2011 season and has been their starting second baseman for the past season-and-a-half, hitting .280 with decent power. He is expected to fill the same role with Detroit, replacing the poorly performing platoon of Ramon Santiago and Danny Worth. Santiago will return to his role as a utility infielder, while Worth is almost certainly headed back to Toledo. The move will also make it easier to drop Ryan Raburn when Andy Dirks returns from his rehab assignment with the Mud Hens. Sanchez has been a league-average pitcher this season, and slightly above-average for the last several years. If he can make the adjustment to the American League, he will be a perfect fit for the Tigers in the rotation spot currently shared by Turner and Drew Smyly. Infante and Sanchez aren't coming cheaply, though. Turner is considered one of the top pitching prospects in baseball, and just won his first major-league game on Sunday, two months after his 21st birthday. Tigers manager Jim Leyland has acknowledged that Turner isn't ready to be a full-time major-league starter, but expects him to be in the top part of someone's rotation in the next few years. Brantly, Detroit's third-round pick in 2010, just turned 23 and has been catching for Toledo. After starting the season hitting .311 with walks and doubles power in Erie, he was moved up to the Mud Hens when Alex Avila and Gerald Laird were both having hamstring problems. He has struggled at that level, hitting only .254, but was still considered a solid prospect for 2014 and beyond. Flynn is a 22-year-old lefty starter who showed enough promise at High-A Lakeland to get a recent promotion to Erie. He's a big, hard-throwing pitcher who will probably need a few more years of minor-league seasoning before having any kind of big-league career. The teams also swapped the draft picks that they obtained in last week's Competitive Balance Lottery. Miami gave up their pick after the first round in exchange for Detroit's pick after the second round.
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