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I kind of wonder how many of the DD FA signings were Ilitch inspired/authorized/mandated.

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4 hours ago, Casimir said:

I kind of wonder how many of the DD FA signings were Ilitch inspired/authorized/mandated.

All of the bad ones were dictated by puppet master Avila.

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I'm gonna buy Avila a birthday card just to spite the haters. And it ain't even his birthday.

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14 minutes ago, leflore said:

I'm gonna buy Avila a birthday card just to spite the haters. And it ain't even his birthday.

That’s a lovely sentiment, though I don’t think there are any Gardy haters here.

btw, be sure to send it via USPS.  He doesn’t own a computer and his phone, purchased from Consumer Cellular, only has three buttons on it.

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On 9/18/2020 at 4:27 PM, Shelton said:

I’m not going to try to argue that Avila’s signings have been good. But to be fair he really only had two offseasons where free agent signings would have made sense, and the second one they were already over the tax line. But yes, pelfrey and lowe and zimmermann and Upton didn’t work out. But at least he got out of the upton deal thanks to the angels incompetence. But AA did successfully sign and flip Martin and Fiers during the tear down years. 
 

I forgot about Martin and Fiers....I liked those signings from the beginning and they worked out well for AA and the Tigers.  But a bunch of his early FA signings performed badly and hurt the Tigers on the field in 2016 and 2017.  Upton was decent enough.

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Did DD have good FA signings? Pudge and Maggs worked out. Victor’s first contract worked. His second was awful. Joe Nathan was bad. Jose valverde was bad. Prince was a very bad contract but he got out of it (after eating money to do so but whatever). Johnny Damon? Sean Casey for a second year? I’m sure I’m forgetting someone obvious. He did a lot of extending. Not sure if that counts in this discussion or not. But extension contracts to Robertson and Willis were nonsensical and Cabrera’s might be one of the worst in MLB history.

Yeah, I wasn't talking about extensions.....as you mentioned Pudge and Maggs, but there was also Kenny Rogers, Todd Jones (who was effective for several years), Damon was fine -- he was a 2.4 WAR player for $8M for one year....Valverde was very effective for two years, Al Alburquergue, Benoit, Hunter was pretty decent for two years, Rajai Davis, Blaine Hardy, and of course JD Martinez (which AA also gets big credit for).  Fielder was massively expensive due to the VMart injury in the spring, but also very productive, and they flipped him for Kinsler which worked out well.  

DD's whiffs were Brad Penny (to be fair, it was only a $3M contract for 1 year for a 5th starter), relievers like Percival, Nathan, and Gorzellanny....relievers are a pretty big crap-shoot; Nathan and Gorzy were pitched a fair amount and lost some games, those two and Penny are the DD Free Agent acquisitions that performed badly.  All the rest of his FA acquisitions performed well enough on the field.

Nobody seems to know what the **** happened with Willis' extension...made no sense....if that's DD's fault then that's a super-bad one....but not a FA signing.

The extensions were a mixed bag....some hits and misses....how Mike I's personal judgment weighed on those, not sure....but as for getting FA talent, DD did a very good job.

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I know it’s only natural to compare past and current GMs, and I know the present state of the team makes it easy to blame Avila (and the past state makes it easy to praise DD). I just don’t think it’s as good/bad as it is being made out to be.

I forgot about Fiers and Martin, but otherwise I think my assessment is correct regarding FA acquisitions and their on-the-field performance.

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On 9/18/2020 at 4:35 PM, RandyMarsh said:

Dombrowksi whiffed on Vina, Percival, Brandon Lyon, Johnny Damon, Jose Mesa, Urbina(in his defense turned it into Polanco but still signing him to begin with was a whiff) Joe Nathan, Joba Chamberlain and Brad Penny.  Most of those may have only been 1 or 2 year contracts but aside from Zimm all of Avila's failures were only on short term deals as well.  

Huh?  How did he "whiff" on Lyon and Chamberlain?  Lyon was very effective for his one year here, and Joba did decently enough for his time here as well.  

Damon was fine too....2.4 War for one year is fine....

If your standards are that high then pretty much everybody acquired by AA has been a whiff.

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9 minutes ago, sabretooth said:

Huh?  How did he "whiff" on Lyon and Chamberlain?  Lyon was very effective for his one year here, and Joba did decently enough for his time here as well.  

Damon was fine too....2.4 War for one year is fine....

If your standards are that high then pretty much everybody acquired by AA has been a whiff.

I mentioned why I said Lyon was a whiff(or atleast I originally thought) in a later post.  He was brought into be a shut down set up man and possible closer.  He did not do that very well, his overall line looks decent but he didn't excel in the role he was brought into to do.  His shutdown to meltdown ratio was not very good, and his WPA was barely above 0, so he basically about the same as he is exceeded in high pressure situations.  That's not what they signed him for.

I also did soften up my stance and say he wasn't a total whiff cause when I said that I confused his contract with somebody else.  I was thinking they signed him to a multi year deal for alot more money but after going back to check after my post I saw that wasn't the case so considering what they paid for him he wasn't a whiff.  But with that said he didn't exactly do what they wanted either.   

 

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OK, thanks for the clarification....frankly, relievers are a tad volatile.....even when healthy their performances tend to vary quite a bit from year to year.

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Some free agents are signed with the idea that they are going to be fringe players or maybe they will catch fire or provide some sort of leadership for the younger players.  You need these kind of guys, and not everyone is going to be a stud.  What did you expect from Jody Mercer when he was signed?  I think he provided exactly what everyone thought he was going to provide.  He wasn't going to make the all star team, he wasn't going to be a league leader, he wasn't going to single handedly take the team to the playoffs.  He provided professionalism and leadership, something that the team needed.  Not everyone is going to play like Mike Trout.  

I can't stand Avila, but most of the guys he has signed has been about what was expected of them.  You aren't going to sign Ivan Nova and get a top 10 pitcher.  You are getting a guy who will give you innings and hopefully keep you in the game.  The fact that he got injured is disappointing, but 1/3 of the league's pitchers get hurt every year.

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That line about "he gives you a lot of innings" as justification for signing a pitcher who isn't very good is a pretty old one, the first time I heard it used was for Jack Billingham or Walt Terrell..  It is code for "couldn't break a pane of glass" or "doesn't throw hard enough to hurt himself".  But what else are you going to do?  If there was anyone better out there, you'd have done something different.  I don't see Avila as being any worse than average at sorting through that pile of rejects. 

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On 9/20/2020 at 9:22 AM, Tigermania said:

Some free agents are signed with the idea that they are going to be fringe players or maybe they will catch fire or provide some sort of leadership for the younger players.  You need these kind of guys, and not everyone is going to be a stud.  What did you expect from Jody Mercer when he was signed?  I think he provided exactly what everyone thought he was going to provide.  He wasn't going to make the all star team, he wasn't going to be a league leader, he wasn't going to single handedly take the team to the playoffs.  He provided professionalism and leadership, something that the team needed.  Not everyone is going to play like Mike Trout.  

I can't stand Avila, but most of the guys he has signed has been about what was expected of them.  You aren't going to sign Ivan Nova and get a top 10 pitcher.  You are getting a guy who will give you innings and hopefully keep you in the game.  The fact that he got injured is disappointing, but 1/3 of the league's pitchers get hurt every year.

Zimm, Pelfrey and Lowe were signed to fill specific needs, and they all completely blew up...Zimm had signs of decline, Lowe was wildly inconsistent, and Pelfrey already sucked....given what they needed from those 3 to compete, they were all reaches that backfired on Avila.

Hes done kinda decently in the last couple of years with what hes had to work with...but in the 1st 2 off seasons he had a large budget and blew it.

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On 9/20/2020 at 9:49 AM, Charles Liston said:

That line about "he gives you a lot of innings" as justification for signing a pitcher who isn't very good is a pretty old one, the first time I heard it used was for Jack Billingham or Walt Terrell..  It is code for "couldn't break a pane of glass" or "doesn't throw hard enough to hurt himself".  But what else are you going to do?  If there was anyone better out there, you'd have done something different.  I don't see Avila as being any worse than average at sorting through that pile of rejects. 

Billingham and Terrell (especially the first time around) actually provided pretty good innings.  Guys like Zimmermann and Pelfrey are so bad that they aren't really better than throwing some fringe prospect out there.  

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Pelfrey was predictably bad.  Zimm at least had a track record of success; Terrell as well, and Terrell was fine for us.  EDIT: for the pennies they paid for him (less than $3m total over 7 years for 7.7 WAR, 1400 IP and a 4.3 ERA, 3 of 7 years at or better than league average ERA), he was an ideal innings eater.

Also. FWIW, Billingham had two very decent years here..110 ERA+ despite very low K totals, even for that period.

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Maybe it's more like - "there aren't enough good pitchers out there to dedicate scarce resources necessary to avoid innings eaters in the 4 and 5 slots, even for a winning team"  As bad as Pelfrey and Penny and the ilk were, you have to take some chances on a risky/sketchy veteran, at least for the back slot, or you are going to have to throw a youngster out there when he's not ready and maybe wreck his development, or overspend on a veteran....when even qualified veteran pitchers are kinda risky bets anyway.

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One of the scouts, or maybe it was Chadd, had a hard on for Pelfrey dating back to the draft. I know Avila offers the contracts, but there were others pushing hard for Pelfrey. And yes, I posted hard on and pushing hard in the same post.

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How many candidates has Al Avila interviewed thus far? Who’s got the advantage to become the next Tigers manager? I’m going to be very disappointed if Avila hires AJ Hinch or Alex Cora. 

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I read Al will be interviewing Lombard and that's the only one I've heard so far

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