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Tenacious D

Initial '16/'17 Offseason Thoughts

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I have a strong feeling that this offseason will be the least eventful since before Dombrowski took over the Tiger’s front office.  And it won’t be for a lack of effort or skill on Avila’s part.  The reality, similar to what we saw at the Trade Deadline, is that this team is set for a few years, based on a combination of personnel, organizational depth and player contract considerations.

Starting with our position players, I don’t see any of McCann, Cabrera, Kinsler, Iglesias, Castellanos, Upton and the Martinez Bros being moved.  All are productive at their positions and would be difficult to upgrade, and still maintain a reasonable payroll.  Also, I think it’s a no-brainer for the Tigers to exercise Maybin’s option ($9MM), leaving only decisions to be made with Aybar and Saltalamacchia.  Aybar probably walks—he’ll be too expensive to be a super utility guy, and we already have Romine and Machado, who should be ready for big league duty next year.  I think Salty’s days as a starting catcher are through, and assume the league agrees.  I think he’ll have to settle for a backup catcher contract, and I think there is a mutual admiration there, so wouldn’t be surprised to see him get a David Ross-type of deal to stay for the next two years.  Tyler Collins, Anthony Gose and Steven Moya provide the outfield depth, with Gerber and Stewart looming.

The starting rotation looks set, too—Verlander and Zimmerman are both back, the latter mainly due to his contract, but he should be able to bounce-back and be a solid #3.  Fulmer, Boyd and Norris have all shown that they are ready (how often do you see that type of yield from salary dump trades?).  We’ll still have Sanchez, Pelfrey, Greene and Farmer in the mix.  With $25MM committed to Sanchez and Pelfrey next season, I don’t see them doing anything here.

The bullpen is less clear, but not lacking for candidates.  K-Rod’s option ($6MM) is a no-brainer, whether or not he serves as the closer.  We’re stuck with Lowe and have to hope that he can bounce-back.  Rondon, Greene, A. Wilson, Sanchez and Pelfrey will all be in the mix for RH arms.  Two of J. Wilson, Hardy, Mantiply and Ryan will be the lefties.  And Jiminez is very close.

The only way I see any significant moves happening this year is if we decide to shed some salary, which seems unlikely.  In that scenario, Cabrera, Verlander and Kinsler would probably yield a lot, especially in an offseason with few impact free agents.  Might even be able to move Victor, too, especially if he finishes strong.  Otherwise, I think this will be a very quiet offseason. 

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I noticed on Twitter that Christopher D. Long is no longer working for the Tigers.  I say that because he was brought in last year and part of the analytics group, which they emphasized as a change for them.   Now maybe they didn't like his work or couldn't agree on a salary or whatever.... could be nothing.  But interesting to me.

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You could definitely make an argument that they don't need to make any moves heading into next year to "upgrade" a position on the active roster. I suppose that is a beneficial position to be in, because they have already committed so much money to the present cast.

Whether or not there are financial considerations in play will have an effect on what they decide to do. There is an argument to be made that they should try to be proactive about rebuilding the system.

One issue is the corner outfield. Upton and JD would probably look pretty good out there in 2017. But JD is heading into his final year under contract. We don't know if upton will be around after next year because of his opt out. I'm not worried about losing both of them, though. Even if both hit free agency, I would expect the Tigers to pay up and sign one of them for 2018 and beyond.

There are not really any obvious depth candidates to step in for 2017, so trading JD ahead of his walk year is probably not a realistic option.

On the pitching side, I would not be surprised to see either pelfrey or Sanchez traded in the offseason. They wouldn't seem to be in very high demand, but they are both potentially good back end of rotation guys, and the SP free agent market is a joke. It only takes one DD type out there that will trade a decent prospect or two for an Alfredo Simon/ Mike pelfrey/ anibal Sanchez to fill a fifth starter role. Even if the Tigers need to eat a bit of money, they could probably justify a deal there.

I think Moya is destined to be traded. He isn't a good fit for a team with ideas of contending that already has two corner outfielders and a DH. He's out of options, and isn't a great player to have on the bench, especially when you have Collins to fill that role.

My guess is that Moya is traded, and one of Sanchez and pelfrey are also traded.

A dark horse trade candidate could be Iglesias depending on the return. He will be getting expensive soon, and his bat isn't anything special.

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I think he was a consultant, so maybe it was a short-term contract.  He seems like a great database guy, so maybe they brought him in to get their databases set up and they don't need him anymore.  Just a wild guess.  

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35 minutes ago, tiger337 said:

I think he was a consultant, so maybe it was a short-term contract.  He seems like a great database guy, so maybe they brought him in to get their databases set up and they don't need him anymore.  Just a wild guess.  

I tend to agree with this. He was probably brought in to ramp up their infrastructure but wasn't needed on a go-forward basis.

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Do we see any position players emerging as starters next year?  We have a log jam pretty much everywhere. 

 

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I think CF is an area where they can/should upgrade. I like Maybin a lot, and while he won't always hit like he did in May, he's been just fine since then. When healthy. Which leads me to my issue with him, his health. Do we really want another yeah of him missing a week every month due to some fluke injury? I don't think he has it in him to be an everyday guy. 

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8 minutes ago, Yoda said:

I think CF is an area where they can/should upgrade. I like Maybin a lot, and while he won't always hit like he did in May, he's been just fine since then. When healthy. Which leads me to my issue with him, his health. Do we really want another yeah of him missing a week every month due to some fluke injury? I don't think he has it in him to be an everyday guy. 

Are you from Boston?

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I think CF is an area where they can/should upgrade. I like Maybin a lot, and while he won't always hit like he did in May, he's been just fine since then. When healthy. Which leads me to my issue with him, his health. Do we really want another yeah of him missing a week every month due to some fluke injury? I don't think he has it in him to be an everyday guy. 

Good center fielders are very hard to find. I think you have to just stick with Maybin and hope he avoids injury for the most part. Fortunately, jaCoby is getting to the level where he could fill in for a few weeks here and there. And Collins has shown an ability to fake it out there, too.

I think it's best to wait until 2018 to address CF further.

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Good center fielders are very hard to find. I think you have to just stick with Maybin and hope he avoids injury for the most part. Fortunately, jaCoby is getting to the level where he could fill in for a few weeks here and there. And Collins has shown an ability to fake it out there, too.

I think it's best to wait until 2018 to address CF further.

I think this makes sense. Jones' future likely isn't on the infield. He can be stashed away safely in Toledo and Collins can serve as 4th OF. Romine is fine on the bench. A catcher. And one open spot after Collins, Romine, catcher.

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You could definitely make an argument that they don't need to make any moves heading into next year to "upgrade" a position on the active roster. I suppose that is a beneficial position to be in, because they have already committed so much money to the present cast.

Whether or not there are financial considerations in play will have an effect on what they decide to do. There is an argument to be made that they should try to be proactive about rebuilding the system.

One issue is the corner outfield. Upton and JD would probably look pretty good out there in 2017. But JD is heading into his final year under contract. We don't know if upton will be around after next year because of his opt out. I'm not worried about losing both of them, though. Even if both hit free agency, I would expect the Tigers to pay up and sign one of them for 2018 and beyond.

There are not really any obvious depth candidates to step in for 2017, so trading JD ahead of his walk year is probably not a realistic option.

On the pitching side, I would not be surprised to see either pelfrey or Sanchez traded in the offseason. They wouldn't seem to be in very high demand, but they are both potentially good back end of rotation guys, and the SP free agent market is a joke. It only takes one DD type out there that will trade a decent prospect or two for an Alfredo Simon/ Mike pelfrey/ anibal Sanchez to fill a fifth starter role. Even if the Tigers need to eat a bit of money, they could probably justify a deal there.

I think Moya is destined to be traded. He isn't a good fit for a team with ideas of contending that already has two corner outfielders and a DH. He's out of options, and isn't a great player to have on the bench, especially when you have Collins to fill that role.

My guess is that Moya is traded, and one of Sanchez and pelfrey are also traded.

A dark horse trade candidate could be Iglesias depending on the return. He will be getting expensive soon, and his bat isn't anything special.

I wonder if we might see Moya and one of the SPs moved in the same deal?

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On 9/6/2016 at 11:57 AM, John_Brian_K said:

Are you from Boston?

I think it's a southern California thing.  

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I was thinking that since Chris Long was my Adopted Tiger, I should select another one now.  I like future stars, so I am deciding between Dustin Molleken and John Hicks.  

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37 minutes ago, tiger337 said:

I was thinking that since Chris Long was my Adopted Tiger, I should select another one now.  I like future stars, so I am deciding between Dustin Molleken and John Hicks.  

Maybe he didn't come back because he was too busy doing NCAA volleyball and pokemon Go.

All kidding aside I still follow him.  He interacted with me a few times.  once early he he tweeted about a Tigers win, and then I sent one back with the Tiger Roar thing that channel 4 would close out their broadcast with after a win.  He liked that.  Another time we talked about the importance of dead lifts on our hamstrings and it's affect on overall health.  

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On 9/6/2016 at 0:35 PM, Shelton said:

Good center fielders are very hard to find. I think you have to just stick with Maybin and hope he avoids injury for the most part. Fortunately, jaCoby is getting to the level where he could fill in for a few weeks here and there. And Collins has shown an ability to fake it out there, too.

I think it's best to wait until 2018 to address CF further.

Jones is still a giant question mark. Be consistent for 1/2 year or so. But he's still young, maybe he'll work out.

I don't like Collins out there very much. He has a hard time judging the ball which causes bad breaks on the ball. And he's not fast enough to make up for his poor routes.

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18 hours ago, Casimir said:

I think this makes sense. Jones' future likely isn't on the infield. He can be stashed away safely in Toledo and Collins can serve as 4th OF. Romine is fine on the bench. A catcher. And one open spot after Collins, Romine, catcher.

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This all makes sense but I feel there may be a blockbuster deal by the Tigers. Never underestimate the possible moves they could make.

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8 minutes ago, Oblong said:

Maybe he didn't come back because he was too busy doing NCAA volleyball and pokemon Go.

All kidding aside I still follow him.  He interacted with me a few times.  once early he he tweeted about a Tigers win, and then I sent one back with the Tiger Roar thing that channel 4 would close out their broadcast with after a win.  He liked that.  Another time we talked about the importance of dead lifts on our hamstrings and it's affect on overall health.  

yeah, he is pretty interactive.  I have followed him for a long time.   

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A relatively quiet offseason, would be a somewhat positive indication of the state of the organization.  It's a competitive ballclub without a lot of major issues to address. That's not a bad place to be over the winter. 

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I do not think there is much to do except hope everybody stays healthy and try to identify some diamond in the rough relievers and depth players.  Of course if Ilitch decides to cut payroll substantially, there will be a lot of work to do.  He has shown no indication of that though.  

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28 minutes ago, Sports_Freak said:

This all makes sense but I feel there may be a blockbuster deal by the Tigers. Never underestimate the possible moves they could make.

Oh goody, trade for another Pelfrey or Lowe type of pitcher rather than sign a free agent.

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58 minutes ago, Casimir said:

Oh goody, trade for another Pelfrey or Lowe type of pitcher rather than sign a free agent.

Or a Stanton type of player for a couple/few prospects?

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I'd rather have Moya on the bench at this point instead of Collins.  We're one VMart/JD/Upton injury away from really needing him.

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On 9/7/2016 at 2:06 PM, tiger337 said:

I do not think there is much to do except hope everybody stays healthy and try to identify some diamond in the rough relievers and depth players.  Of course if Ilitch decides to cut payroll substantially, there will be a lot of work to do.  He has shown no indication of that though.  

Yah, gotta be exhaustive when it comes to relievers and really use this offseason to make sure the pen is a strength. Hopefully Jimenez is part of that and maybe Rondon goes to more of a high leverage role. Is Greene for real? Can J.Wilson get his **** together? Those will be keys. 

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