Tigers signing in response to Halos?

After Josh Hamilton signed with the Angels for 5 years and $125 million it seems like the Halos were putting the Tigers on notice.  With a middle of the order that could include, in any order, Trout, Pujols and Hamilton the Angels look to have the ability to rough up any starters coming their way.

So is that why Mike Illich is willing to give his number four starter 5 years and a $75 million contract like the one currently on the table for Anibal Sanchez UPDATE: signed for 5 years, $80 million.  The Cubs were rumored to be interested and offered 5/$77.5, but it seemed the Tigers were still in the lead despite the slight increase from Chicago.

Bob Nightengale reported that the Tigers first offer was of 4 years and $48 million, so they made a significant increase to get to where they are now in the deal.  The two deals for Sanchez and Hamilton now moves the Angels and the Tigers neck and neck to be the top teams in the AL.  Every move one team now makes will have a response from the other as these two jockey to be the best in the AL.

What the signing of Sanchez does do is two things, basically ensures that Rick Porcello will be traded before the beginning of the season and that in his next deal Justin Verlander will be making $30 million a season.  If a guy like Sanchez gets $16 a season, Zack Greinke  gets $24.5 a season it is no doubt that JV will get at least $30.  The Dodgers and Tigers have completely swayed the average salary for guys with these signings and it looks like Verlander will be the one, other than Sanchez and Greinke, to reap the benefits.

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