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2015 Off-season thread

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Roy Cullenbine, the most underrated player in Detroit Tiger history

still better than Wyton Benard today

I notice that he got much better at the age of 30.

Steroids.

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I wouldn't put him in the top 5 outfielders...

1. Derek Hill

2. Christin Stewart

3. Steve Moya

4. Mike Gerber

5. Julio Martinez

Hope that makes you feel better...

Need more Julio Martinez.

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Bernard's not Mike Trout...but he's better than a dead guy. Is that too vague a scouting projection....his ceiling is somewhere between a dead guy and Mike Trout?

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Updated Scouting Report on Cullenbine:

Physical: No longer has the look of a ballplayer, not a lot of meat on his bones, does have an intimidating presence that can unnerve opposing pitchers.

Mental: Decades of experience and long periods of reflection while resting peacefully in his grave, truly a master of the craft

Batting: Amazing plate discipline, will never chase a pitch out of the zone, or in the zone, or lift a bat. Will draw you walks, but don't expect much power or batting average.

Defense: DH only, his old bones can't handle the rigors of regular defensive work anymore.

Baserunning: Lack of muscle definition, and muscles in general, leads to slow footspeed. Not much of a basestealer, but good instincts.

Makeup: He'll need a lot of it to pass as a non skeleton.

Works as a Halloween decoration during the offseason.

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One writer wrote about the tight ship that DD ran. The guy got to know a few of the players in the minors. He'd text them questions, they'd answer. At one point a player was down there on a rehab and the writer asked these players how he looked. I am pretty sure it was Peralta after his suspension. They were honest, said he was in LF, looked ok. Not embarassing. He wrote about it. He heard DD was not happy that teh info got out and those players never responded to his texts or calls again.

It is interesting that Avila appears to be more open than DD. Fans do need to hear that because the ticket agents will have their hands full in getting people to renew this year. DD as team CEO and President would be sensitive to that you'd think. Avila's baseball operations only so while I'm sure he wants tickets to sell it's not his primary objective. Yet he's doing a small part to sell.

I have never been a season ticket holder so it's good to hear this perspective.

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Avila post mortem presser:

Avila on potential big money FA : "Not ruling anybody out but says payroll in $189-200 million range is ridiculous."

hmmm

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Some Avila comments:

-The Tigers intend on adding 2 SP this offseason. One who will fit in the top 3 in the rotation. He expects Norris, Boyd, Greene, Fulmer, etc to compete for 5th spot.

-He intends on adding 2-3 BP arms, including a closer.

-They have discussed extending JD.

-He expects his son will find a better deal elsewhere.

-"Not ruling anybody out" but says payroll in $189-$200 million range is "ridiculous"

@anthonyfenech 1m1 minute ago

Asked if the team's 2016 payroll would be higher or lower than the past season, Avila said it would be a "very highly competitive payroll."

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Also said he was open to trading assets(Kinsler) to clear payroll space. Twitter is blocked at work so eventually this will all be transcribed.

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Avila post mortem presser:

Avila on potential big money FA : "Not ruling anybody out but says payroll in $189-200 million range is ridiculous."

hmmm

Avila clearly means the Tigers are going to spend closer to $378-400 million instead...

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Avila post mortem presser:

Avila on potential big money FA : "Not ruling anybody out but says payroll in $189-200 million range is ridiculous."

hmmm

"Petal to the metal"? I don't think so.

They are going to try and walk the tight rope with this team between rebuilding and signing big time free agents.

Let's hope it isn't windy.

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A couple ways to view his comments. Did he mention left field? If not, that could indicate that they are happy enough with the projected offensive performance of the current roster, and going with Collins in left and batting 7th or 8th would be ok.

The willingness to trade assets points to a possibility of trading Iglesias or kinsler and banking on machado, with such a trade bringing in a similarly priced left fielder.

The payroll comment makes it almost impossible to add all of the necessary pieces without making a trade. Two starting pitchers and a few bullpen pieces including a closer will eat up the entire budget.

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@matthewbmowery 6m6 minutes ago

Avila said left field was a secondary issue, one that is dependent on how the pitching expenditures play out, as well as the FA market.

This all sounds to me like the Tigers still view the luxury tax as a hard cap.

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@matthewbmowery 6m6 minutes ago

Avila said left field was a secondary issue, one that is dependent on how the pitching expenditures play out, as well as the FA market.

This all sounds to me like the Tigers still view the luxury tax as a hard cap.

How they would treat LF was the one thing I wasn't sure about. Doesn't sound like they'll go after the top guys there, which is disappointing but expected.

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A couple ways to view his comments. Did he mention left field? If not, that could indicate that they are happy enough with the projected offensive performance of the current roster, and going with Collins in left and batting 7th or 8th would be ok.

The willingness to trade assets points to a possibility of trading Iglesias or kinsler and banking on machado, with such a trade bringing in a similarly priced left fielder.

The payroll comment makes it almost impossible to add all of the necessary pieces without making a trade. Two starting pitchers and a few bullpen pieces including a closer will eat up the entire budget.

He said left field was secondary to pitching and that it would depend on budget and how FA marked played out. Sounds like they will be going cheap in LF

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It seems an odd range to cite. What is the significance of $189M? Is that the projected luxury tax threshold?

I believe it is, but that counts benefits and everything. So the real number is low $170Ms

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Not news, but kind of interesting that Verhagen is included in that group.

Jeff Riger@riger1984 26m26 minutes ago

When talking about positives 4 next year Avila mentioned Drew VerHagen, Alex Wilson, Daniel Norris, Matt Boyd and a healthy Shane Greene

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@matthewbmowery 4m4 minutes ago

Avila on how hard to find a closer: "Well, that’s a tough task. B/c if you look at projected FAs out there, I don’t now that there are any"

Feliz in mix? Avila: "Well, I would say that we like Feliz, and we’ll be evaluating, we’ll be discussing him along with a lot of other guys"

More Avila on Feliz: "I guess you could throw him in the mix." (Not a ringing endorsement, that ...)

Avila on Rondon: "I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the lesson is learned, and he comes back ready to go."

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He said left field was secondary to pitching and that it would depend on budget and how FA marked played out. Sounds like they will be going cheap in LF

Yep. Avila did not rule out trades though, and after hearing all this, I do expect him to make one. Maybe a big one.

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A couple ways to view his comments. Did he mention left field? If not, that could indicate that they are happy enough with the projected offensive performance of the current roster, and going with Collins in left and batting 7th or 8th would be ok.

The willingness to trade assets points to a possibility of trading Iglesias or kinsler and banking on machado, with such a trade bringing in a similarly priced left fielder.

The payroll comment makes it almost impossible to add all of the necessary pieces without making a trade. Two starting pitchers and a few bullpen pieces including a closer will eat up the entire budget.

Yep, my read into it is they'll sign a Kazmir/Samardzija/Kennedy type as their #3, and sign a Simon or Bud Norris type as their #5. I think they'll try the trade market for a closer, which means giving up prospects. I think they'll spend $8M-$10M or so in FA on BP setup pieces. And then try to piece together a RHH CF (Rajai?) and a Collins upgrade if they can.

This kind of puts a damper on things for me (which was maybe the point?). It seems like the plan is the same as it was for 2015--patch some holes and hope, instead of build.

And there seems a high likelihood that Collins gets a lot of at-bats in LF and Holaday is the backup C.

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@matthewbmowery 4m4 minutes ago

Avila on how hard to find a closer: "Well, that’s a tough task. B/c if you look at projected FAs out there, I don’t now that there are any"

So, he doesn't want Soria back or doesn't view him as a closer?

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Yep. Avila did not rule out trades though, and after hearing all this, I do expect him to make one. Maybe a big one.

Yeah, I think they'll have to make a significant trade if they are going to build a real contender. I don't think there is enough in the budget to do it strictly through free agency.

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