Moving On

by billfer on October 29, 2006 · 92 comments

in 2006 Season,Playoffs

It’s been a couple days now, and I hope the pain isn’t quite as strong. I received emails and calls from friends offering condolences like a loved one had passed away. It got me thinking about the grieving process, and I realized I did the bulk of my grieving after game 4. By game 5 I had come to terms with it, and was progressing through all 5 steps:

  1. Denial: My goodness no. Fernando Rodney didn’t just throw that ball away. How could this happen? It was an easy out. Why is this happening to me!? Curtis couldn’t have fallen on his own. Maybe the game can be played under protest or something
  2. Anger:: Frickin Eckstein. What does grit have to do with hitting routine flyballs that should be outs. This prick is going to win the MVP without actually hitting a ball hard. I hate gritty little players.
  3. Bargaining: Please God, just give this team a chance to get it back to Detroit. They’ve done too good and come to far. I know they’re not hitting but maybe the Cardinals could make an error or slip or something.
  4. Depression: It’s over. There’s no coming back from this. They were so close and will they ever get this chance again? What if someone gets injured next year or Verlander was a fluke? What if Jim Leyland gets lung cancer?Spring training is a long ways away. Now what am I going to do?
  5. Acceptance: They could win game 5 and bring things back to Detroit, but then what? It’s been a great season and the team just chose the brightest spotlight to play its worst. As much as I wanted them to win the World Series, it doesn’t diminish the wonderful experiences from the rest of the season. I can’t wait until next year.

Now there is a hollowness that has come with the end of the baseball season. There was such a rhythm for so long, that I’m actually a little out of sorts without it. Part of me is grateful for the break. Fandom combined with maintaining the site left me without a lot of time for family and sleep. Now I can appreciate both a little more.

As for the site, I’ll be here all off season and there is a ton to talk about. While I probably won’t be posting every single day, you can still expect new stuff 4 to 5 times a week. Even before the hot stove heats up, we’ll talk about:

  • The 40 man roster and who will be back, who will be added, and who will be jettisoned.
  • The merits of Don Slaught as a hitting coach
  • Why Guillen shouldn’t be moved to first base next season
 
 

{ 92 comments }

hawk October 29, 2006 at 8:37 pm

guillen should not be moved to first – sign casey to back up first, DH and pinch hit. Go out and sign a power hitting first baseman. Haven’t looked to see who is available. What to do with Stairs? Also able to play first. Only way you can sell me on Guillen moving to first is if we sign a big stud SS (Tejada). I suppose it would be a bit easier on Guillen’s legs – - but would still rather have a natural 1B at the position.

Eric Jackson October 29, 2006 at 10:19 pm

I would love to see Casey back, but hasn’t Leyland been saying that Chris Shelton is their future at first base?

As for free agents, I believe there are only a few: Casey, Jamie Walkers, who else?

Bob S. October 29, 2006 at 10:45 pm

What is a natural first basman?While there are a few gifted athletes playing the position,it’s also home to many slow and/or overweight players and players at the end of their careers.Guillen would quickly be Gold Glove caliber at first base.

Andy in NY October 29, 2006 at 11:40 pm

Um, let’s drop Neifi from that 40-man roster. Pronto.

Ken from Cincinnati October 30, 2006 at 1:02 am

Poor Neifi. Maybe we could trade him for another jar of pine tar. We can’t have too much of the stuff around. I think it was a real shame that Verlander and Rodney didn’t utilize the tools available to them, if you know what I mean. Could have saved a couple errors with the added grip. As for 1st base….I’m not sure I don’t want Casey as a full-time starter. The way he has consistently hit over .300 throughout his career and the power that he showed toward the end of the season, leads me to believe that if healthy he could give us a .300+ 20 homer season. In fact, I’m not sure where I would make an upgrade. I think I’m just too in love with everybody. We could make a step forward with just allowing our sub .300 hitters to continue to improve. I think Inge will bat better. Monroe should improve 20 basis points or so. Thames will hit 70 or 80 homers, Granderson will win the batting title…..ok now I’m just a tad too optimistic.

Mark in SF October 30, 2006 at 1:53 am

Well, I’m glad to see a post up today. I felt a bit empty yesterday without one. Good to see that I’ll have something related to the Tigers to keep me occupied 4-5 days per week for the next few months. And while I know it’s been said on this site — many times, many ways — thanks for this global Tiger kiosk, Billfer.

Jojo SunDevil October 30, 2006 at 4:29 am

Well, lets see, first we should deport Neifi Perez, or at least trade him for some catchers mitts or something. Hitting second? I still havent got over that.

The merits of Don Slaught as a hitting coach? Umm..no. 3-0 swing at the sky, 3-1, now you canswing with one hand, full count, strike out good count. You know he could teach people how to work counts. The funny thing is the Tigers batting averages did mostly improve, but their batting averages were only slightly lower than their on-base percentages. Simply put, the Tigers do not know how to work counts. They can keep being so dependent on their pitching.

Other than the obvious need for another big bat (Barry Bonds?, Luis Gonzalez, who still has a high OBP), I think the Tigs should get more speed. They need a 25 stolen base guy. They also need a left handed bat, I still think that Abreu deal would have helped.

Hitting second? Are you f’in kidding me? Did Leyland owe him money or somethin?

Lou October 30, 2006 at 5:37 am

I think Manny Rameriez would be a great pick-up if they can swing a trade. We know Illitch would be willing to pay and Red Sox won’t ask for much in return if we take the whole contract (probably could swing it with a AAA starter prospect or maybe Grilli plus a couple of low level non-prospects).

I might be speaking heresy here, but maybe Guillen should be traded? His value will never be higher and he’s likely to enter his decline phase in the next year or two. Of course, we’d need to replace him, I’m not sure who might be available and could do that. Michael Young? Ah, never mind, I’ve talked myself out of it.

Christine October 30, 2006 at 8:43 am

Lou, funny you should mention Ramirez. My other favorite team, the Red Sox, could very possibly trade Manny this off-season. Guillen might be someone that would interest them. I’m not saying the trade is likely. Both teams would have PR problems with the move, but stranger things have happened.

Anne October 30, 2006 at 9:34 am

I think I heard somwhere Mark Texiera was interested in playing for the Tigs, but where to put him? His 33 homers sure would help.

On a different topic, how did everyone spend their first week-end without baseball? I looked around and discovered I had kids. Who knew? :-) They’re actually kinda fun to hang out with.

Dave from 'The ATL' October 30, 2006 at 10:00 am

We’ve got to get Casey back. That guy’s a true all-star! Mabye we can get someting for Shelton?

What’s the latest on the Vernon Wells trade rumors?

When’s Cameron Maben making his Detroit debut?

Is there a chance we could land Tejada, Bonds, Frank Thomas?

johnw October 30, 2006 at 10:17 am

I’m just glad that we finally have a team that’s worth following all season, that actually gave us a reason to care and many reasons for hope.

Guillen would be a fine defensive 1B, but his offensive production would be marginal for the position. If he can play SS at all, I’d keep him there and look for a new first baseman. I doubt Casey is the answer.

The offense clearly needs some work, but I’d be surprised if the Tigers sign a marquee free agent. It doesn’t seem to be Dombrowski’s M.O. He’s more likely to keep the pitching staff together and continue to integrate prospects. If he’s budget-planning for the long term, he has to look at pending free agencies on the starting staff. Some of those guys will draw top dollar, and the Tigers will need payroll flexibility to keep them.

And as another Tiger fan in Red Sox Nation, I can confirm the Sox are exploring Manny trades. It’d take a lot more than Grilli or a prospect, though. Maybe something like Zumaya, Ledezma and a prospect. How do you feel about that?

SJC in Detroit October 30, 2006 at 10:27 am

Again, thanks Billfer. Like the last couple off-seasons, looking forward to your posts.

EZ October 30, 2006 at 10:43 am

Billfer, really you can’t be thanked enough, so I am doing it again. Great work all season. I am eager to begin the offseason debates, but will wait a little while longer. Just wanted to give Billfer kindest regards again…. Also, Anne, thanks for the laugh this morning.

Riley October 30, 2006 at 10:51 am

I will join the chorus of thanks today for Bilfer and a great website for Tigers fans across the country to talk shop. I certainly renewed my ties to a team that first grabbed me when I was a little kid (end of the Sparky-Trammell years) this year, and in no small part due to the passion and camraderie I have seen from this site. I’m still a little depressed this morning about the way things turned out, but the magic of this season will stay with me long after the Cards raise their banner next season.

Congrats to the 2006 Detroit Tigers on a wonderful season that reminded all of us how much fun baseball can be.

Scott October 30, 2006 at 1:33 pm

OK, people. Lets get a few things straight. Players the Tigers don’t need to acquire or even thing of acquiring this off-season:

1. Barry Bonds – Cheater, bad teammate and over-the-hill. Oh, and lets not forget the throng of media that will follow him around now that he’s only 22 away from Aaron.
2. Manny Rameriz – Still a prodcutive hitter, but … can’t play the OF for crud, is older and right handed. A selfish cancer.
3. Carlos Lee — Not a significant upgrade from Craig Monroe.
4. Frank Thomas – No way he duplicates 2006 next season. Even if he did, he whiffs way too much. Doesn’t add much ecept for an occasional home run.

The Tigers do need another quality bat in the middle of their order. My personal choice would be Texeria …. hits for power, draws walks, is young and a gold-glove first baseman. We’d probably have to give up Bonderman and a prospect or perhaps Shelton if we can con the Rangers. Giving up Bondo or another one of our top starters is a risky proposition … there’s no guarantee that Rogers will duplciate what he did this season or if an injury popped up with Verlander and/or Robertson, it would be big trouble. But it’s clear the Tigers won’t get over the hump without another bat.

Slashpyne October 30, 2006 at 3:01 pm

I would love to see Alex Rodriguez in a Tigers uniform. I live in Seattle Mariner county, and
A Rod carried that team, even when Griffey was there.
He was fifth in RBIs this year and his other numbers were good even though it was a down year for him.
What I’d like is A Rod at 1st, but if Inge would go for yet another position switch, do it this way:
A Rod 3b
Inge SS
Guillen 1B
Texas pays some of his salary, and the Yankees
might be willing to kick in a little.
Trade-wise I think the Yankees would take just about any young arms they can get.

Nick October 30, 2006 at 3:12 pm

Carlos Lee: .300 Avg, .355 OBP, .540 SLG (career: .286/.340/.495)

Craig Monroe: .255, .301, 482 (.263,.310,.461)

Oh and for those that don’t like K’s, Lee strikes out about 90 times every 162 games, Monroe strikes out about 110 times per 162 games. You would really have to be crazy to think that Lee isn’t a significant upgrade over Monroe, though to be honest Lee would probably fit better as a 1B on our team (1B and DH should really be our biggest concerns at the moment, with LF being a distant 3rd). I don’t think Shelton has any kind of future with the Tigers at this point. He got passed over three times in the playoffs for Ramon Santiago.

Frank Thomas brings quite a bit more than just the occasional home run. His OBP was .382 last year, and it’s .424 for his career. As long as he stays healthy he’ll hit, though staying healthy is a major question mark.

I wouldn’t mind getting Bonds as he fits every need the team has on offense (left handed patient hitter with major power.) but it probably isn’t going to happen.

I’d much rather keep Bonderman and get Lee than deal Bonderman and get Texeria. I certainly wouldn’t deal Bonderman AND something else of value for Texeria, Bonderman is still ridiculously young and one of the most valuable commodities in the major leagues.

I really hope we don’t keep Casey around unless he takes a big pay cut and doesn’t mind platooning or pinch hitting. He had a nice playoffs, but the guy doesn’t hit like a 1B anymore (if he ever really did) and he isn’t likely to stay healthy either.

Jason October 30, 2006 at 4:03 pm

I would not attend any game with Barry Bonds in a Tiger uniform.

Nick October 30, 2006 at 4:14 pm

Why?

Bob S. October 30, 2006 at 5:49 pm

While I don’t personally advocate moving Guillen to first base,any competent shortstop would be outstanding fielding the position.I agree that he doesn’t give you the home run power we’d like to see at first, but you do have to factor in that he plays 81 games a year at Comerica Acres,and his OPS is not all that less than many past and present luminaries of the position.
Again with the Bonderman trade talk-I think that is just baseball ignorant(yeah,you Art Regner) and would rank on the all-time stupid Tiger trades alongside giving away Jim Bunning.Pitching is the most valuable commodity in baseball(see Yankees,New York)and is what won us the pennant,so the answer for the future is to trade away pitching for…who?I’d much rather the Tigers try and upgrade with free agents than get rid of a 23 year old with nothing but upside.
I would like to see Casey re-signed,but we should expect him to spend at least part of the season on the DL.If the list of free agents I saw is current,Gary Matthews Jr. is a switch-hitter who would be a significant defensive upgrade in right-field(good arm,covers alot of ground)who also could bat lead-off.He would be a good fit for Comerica.I think Luis Gonzalez would also be a good choice to platoon with Monroe in left-he has decent numbers against RHP and probably wouldn’t cost a fortune.
Anyone know if there’s truth to the rumor that when the Tigers take their positions on opening day 2007,they pile out of one of those little clown cars?

Ken from Cincinnati October 30, 2006 at 5:56 pm

I don’t want to see Barry here either. The last thing we need to do is turn the Tigers from being a respected group of undervalued talents into a circus show of arrogant, overvalued, egos. I don’t want to see Jim Leyland having to butt heads with this guy again. Jim doesn’t deserve that. Hell, nobody on the team deserves being overshadowed by a bunk record chase. Let’s keep the dynamic that we have. Get Texiera.

Mike October 30, 2006 at 7:53 pm

I haven’t checked, but is there anyone at Toledo or Erie who is ready to come up and contribute?

I agree with Scott on the 4 players the Tigers don’t need to pursue.

If you trade for A-Rod, who do you give up? Verlander? Zumaya? Bonderman? They are going to be the ones that the Yankees will ask for. I say stand pat and pick up a free agent.

Chris October 30, 2006 at 8:02 pm

I would also not attend a game if Bonds was tiger.

Cameron in Singapore October 30, 2006 at 10:08 pm

I say try to get A-Rod. Sure, it might be impossible, but he’s an amazing talent, puts up incredible numbers, and is still in his prime. He would be the perfect addition to the lineup (of course, he’s the perfect addition to any lineup).
I definitely say no to Barry Bonds. It would be such a huge distraction, and not one the Tigers need. If things go perfectly for him, you’re looking at what at this point in his career? 120 games, 35 home runs, 80 RBI? The walks would be great, but the daily distraction would be terrible.

Jonathon October 30, 2006 at 10:12 pm

To answer your question Mike, there really isn’t anyone that is ready to step up, not that we really need anyone. If anyone, Brent Clevlen maybe, or potentially Humberto Sanchez and Jordan Tata. These moves will depend on who will go (Thames, Infante, Gomez?) and potentially come in (???). We’re starting to get into that situation where we can allow our talent to mature in the minors (Jurrjans, Whelan, De la Cruz, Maybin) and not have to rush them. Tell ya what, I’m ready for the stove to start heating up…….

Jonathon October 30, 2006 at 10:22 pm

I also agree with Scott in that none of those players should come to Detroit. I would bring back Casey, but not count on him being the full-time starter. If not him, maybe Stairs. The only big time sign/trade that would make sense would be Teixiera, but at what cost?

Anne October 30, 2006 at 11:17 pm

While I won’t go so far as to say I’d never attend a game if Bonds was a Tiger (really, who could stay away if they have another season like this one?) I definitely don’t want to see him in a Tiger uniform. Who needs the headache and the baggage? He’s way past his prime and just not worth it. Just MHO, of course.

A-rod might not be a bad acquisition. My hunch is NY is eager to get rid of him and might not demand much in return. I definitely don’t think we should give up any pitching for him, not only because of the loss for our team but also why hand the Yankees any more ammo?

Texiera at 1st with Casey to pinch hit or DH sounds pretty good to me.

Nick G October 31, 2006 at 2:44 am

I’m all for the Barry signing. Why? I want to win. Leyland and Bonds are still good friends. Can you believe that? They have every reason in the world to lose touch.

I don’t think I have to support Bonds with numbers. But I will say that all you Dr. Laura moralists should give up that schtick. Look no further than Craig Monroe (shoplifting a belt), Dimitii Young (woman beater, substance abuse problem) or, our hero, Kenny Rogers (beating up a camera man, smudge).

We all just want to win.

On another subject, I want to thank EZ for getting my back in Billfer’s “Congratulations Cards” thread on the whole Tram/Ozzie HOF issue while I was away for a couple days. You did a stand up job, EZ. Really better than I could have done…

Again, thank you so much for this blog, Billfer.

Anne October 31, 2006 at 8:53 am

Nick–just wondering if you read the same story I did (I believe in the Freep) after Bonds passed Ruth. Leyland called him to say congratulations and Bonds wouldn’t take his call. You’re right that his stats speak for themselves, but morality aside I just think his downside far outweighs any benefit he brings, especially when you consider there are other players available. Again, just MHO as always.

Nick October 31, 2006 at 9:49 am

Didn’t read that story, and everything I have read suggests Leyland and Bonds are still on speaking terms. Obviously if that isn’t the case it is going to be tough to add Bonds since Leyland isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

Depending on what he costs, I really don’t see a huge downside with Bonds. He single handedly kept the Giants competitive for years with a much worse supporting cast and he is still a dominant offensive force (and hes even solid on defense, though I’d prefer he DH just because I think it would keep him healthier). Balance that with the circus that will be him passing Aaron and the steroid stuff that follows him around, well unless the rest of the team gets jealous I think having the focus squarely on Bonds might be a good thing, especially for someone like Rogers who is going to be under a microscope next year. A few fans won’t show up (though I’m willing to bet they showed up when Young was on the team, which speaks volumes for how screwed up priorities can get when it comes to sports) but at the end of the day Bonds is going to bring in more fans, not less. And he’s going to be a one and done kind of guy, so the risk is minimal (compared to a guy like Soriano, who will take a ton of money and a lot of years).

We can say there are other palyers available, but there isn’t a single free agent available that matches Bonds’ production. If we are talking about trading for Texeria or ARod (who probably isn’t going anywhere, and the Yankees are unlikely to ask for little in return for him. He’s still ARod) you are talking about giving up major league talent PLUS paying them alot of money. I’d prefer we just spend money on Bonds and Lee and let the rotation and bullpen fall where they may.

Bob S. October 31, 2006 at 9:57 am

No club in serious contention needs Barry Bonds around.Between the media sideshow and the change in clubhouse dynamics,the distractions outweigh any possible on-field benefits.He hasn’t been able to put anyone over the top,either- only the Giants in 2002, when his steroid/HGH propelled “greatness” was officially ignored by baseball,got close.Bonds,even more than McGuire,Canseco,and Sosa,is the public face of the most shameful period in the sport since the end of racial discrimination.The sooner he’s out of baseball,the sooner we get this whole episode behind us.

Dave from 'The ATL' October 31, 2006 at 10:03 am

When’s Cameron Maben going to play? I’ve people saying he’s the next Ken Griffey Jr.

Regarding Bonds, let’s not get all ‘high-and-mighty’ and say that we’d boycott Tiger games if we get ‘em. That’s a bit harsh. The bottom-line is that the media has eaten Bonds alive because he’s not one of their ‘darlings’. Bonds absolutley has had his controversial moments but let’s not forget that he’s one ‘heck’ of a baseball player and is soon to be the all time HR record. I’d pay to see that happen in Detroit. Let’s not take the high-road here! I also think Detroit would be a good town for Bonds since he’s out of the national West-coast spotlight. Leyland’s the type of manager that could work wonders with Bonds.

Bob S. October 31, 2006 at 10:24 am

“Let’s not take the high-road here!”There’s some sound advice for us all to pass on to the next generation,along with “Do unto others,before they do it to you” and “It’s not how you play the game,it’s winning.”

Dave from 'The ATL' October 31, 2006 at 10:41 am

I believe everyone deserves a chance to better themselves. We’re not inside the game, we’re fans, we don’t know all the details and are not in a position to cast stones.

I just think it’s silly to boycott because Barry Bonds is in a tiger uniform. Wow! Man, I hope I never make a typo in this blog I might get kicked-out. Scary stuff.

Nick October 31, 2006 at 11:02 am

Bob S., presumably you feel the same way about Bonds that you do about Rogers?

It looks like the Padres declined Mike Piazza’s option. He might be a viable candidate at a DH/1B.

Bob S. October 31, 2006 at 11:32 am

I never suggested boycotting anyone.I did state that signing an over-the-hill clubhouse cancer with a history of illegal drug abuse would be a mistake.
Equating the steroid era with pine-tar use is like saying bank robbery and speeding are the same because they’re both against the law.I don’t endorse cheating and would like to trust that the officials of the sport enforce the rules against it.
Dave from the ATL,typos are generally spelling or puncuation errors-I responded to a statement you wrote that clearly suggested we should avoid the ‘high road’-to my mind,that leaves the low road.I don’t remember writing that you should be banned.If you were scared by my response,you should probably avoid answering the door tonight to pass out candy to the trick-or-treaters who might be dressed as monsters or witches.

Chris Y. October 31, 2006 at 11:45 am

Barry is the 00′s version of Juan Gone. Not with a ten-foot pole and I would seriously question any attempt to sign him.

As for trades, it would be disastrous to trade any high-quality MLB pitching for hitting. Remember what got us to the WS: pitching & defense. trading Bonderman may end up akin to trading Clemens. The guy just turned 24, has lowered his ERA every year, second in the AL in K’s and is improving one pitch away from being Cy Young material. To trade him for anyone would be CRAZY!

The guys mentioned by Cameron above qualify as tradebait in my opiion ofr the right guys: Brent Clevlen, Humberto Sanchez, Jordan Tata, Thames, Infante, Gomez, Jurrjans, Whelan, De la Cruz, Shelton,

Bob S. October 31, 2006 at 11:57 am

Chris Y.,that’s exactly the way to phrase it to make it understandable to those who think it wise to trade Bonderman.There’s a short list of pitchers who are potential Cy Young winners.The list is shorter yet when you limit it to guys under 25.Anyone who thinks you build a winner by trading away good pitching has failed to learn the first commandment of baseball.

Dave from 'The ATL' October 31, 2006 at 2:23 pm

Bob s,

I think you’re mis-interpreting my comments. I wasn’t referring to you specificly when talking about not going to a Tiger game if we get Bonds, it was mentioned above. Anyway, the point is that fans and the media love to pile on Barry Bonds. I just don’t think that steriods should be a factor in the decision. MLB hasn’t suspended or kicked Bonds out of baseball. It just really annoys me when fans decide to play judge & jury.

Nick is correct. Bonds and Leyland have a good relationship and if anyone can get the best out of him it’s probably Jim.

Kurt October 31, 2006 at 2:36 pm

I come down neutral on the Bonds issue. I don’t really care either way for his checkered past. Two of the more important Tigers players this season could be questioned over character, too, at least one over steroids. You look for some sort of “character discount” and take advantage of it to improve your team. I wouldn’t boycott a thing. A friend who’s a Giants season ticket holder said he’s actually a fine teammate and not a problem in the clubhouse.

But do I think it’s a wise move? I’m not sure. 1) Excess media coverage. 1.5) a distraction. 2) Bonds probably won’t come at a discount. 3) I’d still rather Magglio be DH because, frankly, he scares me in the outfield at times.

But if that’s not going to happen, I certainly think Bonds is worth looking at, kicking the tires a bit, seeing if it’s workable rather than flat-out denying it. Because he’s certainly the prototype for the kind of batter we’re looking for. Maybe he is the guy, maybe he isn’t. But I’m not going to start with the door shut.

Walewander October 31, 2006 at 2:57 pm

No to Barry, Sori, A-Rod.

I want Adam Dunn. Just as good as Teixera, high OBP, and he could likely be had cheaper than Teixera (ie, we keep Bonderman), as the Reds have been openly shopping him for months.

Bob S. October 31, 2006 at 3:34 pm

Dunn’s a name I hadn’t heard mentioned.I haven’t seen him play that much,but I’ve always been impressed that a guy could hit .250 and still have an OBP of .380-an added bonus is that with him and Granderson,we’d be guaranteed to lead the league in strike-outs.He definitely brings power to the table.How hard have the Red’s been shopping him, i.e. how cheap could he be gotten?What’s his glove like at first base and in the outfield?

Nick October 31, 2006 at 3:49 pm

Dunn would be a nice fit at DH. Not sure what it would take to get him.

There really aren’t very many similarities between Juan Gone and Bonds. Bonds is at the tail end of his career and would only require a one year contract and the Tigers are in a position to contend right now. Juan Gone required a long term contract to stick around and the Tigers weren’t in any position to contend during the one year they were certain to have him.

Using pine tar to get a better grip is equivalent to speeding. Using it to improve movement on the ball is no different than using steroids, and I don’t have any problem believing Rogers was doing the latter.

Bonds has never been a clubhouse cancer (unless you are refering to his run in with Jeff Kent, who actually IS a clubhouse cancer). I wish just one current Tiger was as over the hill as Bonds. His OBP was higher than any Tigers last year and his .545 SLG would have been 4 points behind the Thames for the team lead.

jim-mt October 31, 2006 at 5:46 pm

I can’t believe how many Tiger fans believe Rogers was cheating, so let’s go get Bonds.
I don’t think it was more than a smudge. He pitched better without it anyway and the way they change baseballs all the time he would have needed a gallon bucket behind home plate. And why have it on the base of his thumb in plain sight? The only other picture I saw of a similar smudge was back on July 20.

The signing of Bonds would be a dagger far worse than the WS loss.

Bob S. October 31, 2006 at 6:29 pm

Why so anxious to think the worst of Rogers but the best of Bonds?
Bonds has had the reputation of acting the d**k with other players,fans,and the media since his days in Pittsburgh.I’ve never shared a clubhouse with him,or even met him,so I guess I really don’t know.On the other hand,I can’t remember any of his teammates going out of their way to defend him or his reputation as his head has gotten larger and larger.If he’s not over-the-hill,should we expect more 40-50-60-70 home run seasons?Bonds was an excellent ballplayer who became Ruthian with chemical enhancement-now that his fountain of youth in a bottle is gone,he’s starting to show the true effects of aging.
Despite having formed an opinion of Rogers after his attack on the cameraman last year(truthfully,I’d never paid any attention to him until that episode),I have spent this year watching him become a mentor to the Tiger’s young pitchers.I think he’s probably a guy with a short fuse who,by all accounts(including that of the cameraman he attacked)feels genuine remorse afterwards.
You can’t seriously equate doctoring a baseball with pine tar to doctoring one’s body with steroids.One violates the rules of a game and,frankly,ranks with corked bats,signal stealing,and letting infield grass grow too long or sanding the basepaths in terms of it’s overall effect on sociey.The other actually violates state and federal law,obligates other players to use the same dangerous,potentially fatal,drugs to stay competitive,and inspires college and high school athletes to do the same.

Chris Y. October 31, 2006 at 7:53 pm

Dunn would be interesting, but what’s the cost? Basically we are working with the corners and LF/DH. I don’t think Monroe is a guy you give up on now. He’s become a more than capable fielder and has decent numbers with a considerable penchant for the clutch hit. But you could move him to DH, if a guy came in who absolutely had to play LF.

I love Inge, but I personally would welcome a move him back to catcher. I don’t think he’ll ever hit (with emphasis on hit) well enough to carry his wiehght at 3B, a power position. The final out of the WS illustrates Inge’s problems, sometimes he’s absolutely lost up there. If he posts his current numbersw as a catcher, he’d be awesome. That all said, if you put a guy like Texeiera at 1B, then that softens the blow of Inge’s bat at 3rd. But a top-end 1B will have to come through a trade, as Casey is probably the top free-agent available.

For what it’s worth, I would take a 40-40 guy in Soriano at DH any day of the week. And I’d pay lots of cash for it too.

Bob S. October 31, 2006 at 8:35 pm

Soriano probably wouldn’t want to DH at this stage of his career.But,from what I’ve read,he prefers second base to left field,and first base is only 90 feet from second base…

Ken from Cincinnati October 31, 2006 at 9:15 pm

Someone inquired on how Adam Dunn fields the ball. As a resident of Cincinnati, I can tell you that he’s about as worthless a defender as they come. I mean, I’ve seen some clips of him looking absolutely ridiculous out there. Many believe he’s the worst in the business, and the Red’s are always wishing they had the DH at their disposal, so to pick up Dunn would be filling our DH spot full-time. Which, by the way, is fine with me. He has a ton of power and is highly underappreciated over here. They would love him if he didn’t have to field every day.

Buff S October 31, 2006 at 9:29 pm

Billfer thanks for providing a great site. It is always interesting, even in past years when the Tigers were taking their lumps. How about Inge and Nate to the Yankees for A Rod. Guillen to third and A Rod at short, with the Big Red – Casey combo at first. Sounds like a Series champion in 2007.

Charly Streetgang II October 31, 2006 at 9:48 pm

God, I’ve seen a few Barry Bonds suggestions and I’m absolutely cringing. That is the last guy we want around here. Even softball players know that when you get some over the hill ego maniac, as*h*ole, roid-head around your team, chemistry goes to complete sh*t. Read this nice and slowly: BARRY BONDS SPELLS DISASTER FOR DETROIT. As for the other suggestions, we don’t need Rob Deer numbers. Think of Inge. I watched almost every single Tiger game this year and swear I can only remember about 5 of his dongs. I sure in the hell remember a ton of k’s with ducks on the pond. Power is over rated. Lets find us another 300 hitter with above average speed who knows how to the work the count and plays defense. Now that’s what I’m talking about.

Sam October 31, 2006 at 9:49 pm

Inge:

Is so good defensively at 3B, you can’t move him. Do you realize that in about the same number of innings over the past 2 years, he has gotten 250 more assists (800-550) to ARod.

I think he can hit better with coaching. He has fallen too in love with the HR and flys off the ball. In addition, he needs to be more patient. He has the ability, but his approach stinks.

-Sam

Jonathon October 31, 2006 at 10:24 pm

Cameron Maybin will not be in Detroit until late 2008. He will be our starting centerfielder in 2009. A-Rod will not be in Detroit next year nor should be Dunn. We already have enough strike out/low average guys and he makes a ton of money. Even if the Yanks really did want to get rid of A-Rod, I doubt they would bat an eye at a Robertson/Inge package. I would really hesitate to trade Clevlen, Jurrjans, Whelan, and Sanchez just based on that they are so young and there is no reason to clean out the system. Sanchez could be that young power pitcher that Bonderman is and not until we know about him for sure should they get rid of Bonderman. I would love to see Teixiera in the English D but first baseman can be a dime a dozen.

Chris Y. October 31, 2006 at 10:45 pm

Considering the free-market menu, what moves we make will likely be through a trade. If you want to make a trade for someone of value, you have to give up potential or value. I don’t think moving a couple of our higher prospects constitutes “cleaning out the system”. I we are to make a trade, its either them or the guys on the field right now…

Chris Y. October 31, 2006 at 10:45 pm

Considering the free-agent menu, what moves we make will likely be through a trade. If you want to make a trade for someone of value, you have to give up potential or value. I don’t think moving a couple of our higher prospects constitutes “cleaning out the system”. I we are to make a trade, its either them or the guys on the field right now…

Jonathon November 1, 2006 at 12:05 am

I agree that if major moves are to be made they will need to be made through trades. Let’s just not forget that we want to build and not just get rid of everybody to try and win for only the next couple years. I, like everyone else thoroughly enjoyed the postseason and want to remain at this level for many years to come.

Walter November 1, 2006 at 9:44 am

How about Trot Nixon as a free agent target?

Nick November 1, 2006 at 10:16 am

I don’t think the best of Bonds. I think he cheated, much like I think Rogers cheated. The fact that Bonds’ cheating broke federal drug laws is fairly uninteresting to me, I don’t see any difference between corking a bat, scuffing a ball, and using PED’s. I don’t think stealing signals and letting the grass grow is even cheating (depending on what you mean by stealing signals). None of these things obligate anyone to do anything else, and if players know that their teammates are doing these things, they have the right (and responsibility if you believe it is convincing high school players to do the same) to come forward. As soon as a player turns in his own teammate for cheating because of it’s harm to youngsters I’ll start differentiating between the two. I saw alot of people defending Dmitri Young when he was brought back, and the stuff he did has a MUCH more negative effect on society than steroids.

Bonds is over the hill in the sense that he isn’t as good as he once was. Of course his “over the hill” is better than anything the Tigers currently have, which is really the reason I’d like to see them sign him (if it’s only a one year deal).

Inge already hits enough to carry his weight at 3B. If power were overrated we wouldn’t have been in the playoffs last year, since it is the only thing we did well on offense and we finished 5th in the league in runs scored. Power isn’t overrated, speed is. So is hitting an empty .300. We could certainly use someone that works the count though, which is why a guy like Adam Dunn would fit nicely. The last thing we need is another Polanco circa 2006 in the lineup.

I don’t think Nixon can stay healthy for a year, but he’d be worth a cheap flier. Someone will probably give him more than that though, and I’d prefer that it not be the Tigers.

Kyle J November 1, 2006 at 11:26 am

This article indicates the Tigers may get in on the bidding for Matsuzaka.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?id=2643750&lpos=spotlight&lid=tab3pos1

Quite a longshot the Tigers would get him, but it would make some sense. Sign Matsuzaka and then trade Bonderman for a big bat. May be easier to pull off then signing a top-notch free agent hitter.

Bob S. November 1, 2006 at 11:27 am

Nick,I think you’re being disingenuous when you say that no one is obligated to use performance enhancing agents.If their use were to become even more ubiquitous,as was becoming the case in the 90s,players wishing to remain competitive were faced with the choice of either getting on the steroid/HGH bus or falling further behind those already using.I think you’re displaying the same lack of candor when you suggest that it is only me who believes that it’s use has become fairly widespread among younger athletes emulating their professional heroes-the use of PEDs among young athletes is well documented.I’ll accept your argument that PED use is the equivalent of pine tar use or scuffing a baseball if you would provide some examples of the life and health threatening consequences of doctoring a baseball.
By the way,you never heard me defending Dimitri Young(or his younger brother,who should have faced felony assault charges for his bat throwing episode-that family obviously has issues that go beyond the baseball diamond).I would prefer he practice his skills elsewhere so that I don’t have to root for his success for my team to win-as with Barry Bonds.
I don’t agree that we should be looking to upgrade through trades,unless some other GM has a monumental lack of judgement(like accepting Robertson&Inge for ARod.Maybe we could offer the Cardinals Ledezma&Shelton for Pujols,too).What the Tigers have that other teams would want in return is pitching-the same pitching that got them close to the top this year.The name most frequently mentioned is Bonderman,which makes me cringe.
The White Sox made a very significant offensive upgrade this year,trading Aaron Rowand for Jim Thome.So what happens?Their pitching goes south(possibly with an contribution from the absence of Rowand,a very good defensive center fielder who has Granderson’s range)and they fail to make the playoffs.
I’d like to see the Tigers make an offer to Gary Matthews Jr.You could make an argument that his good numbers this year had something to do with his being motivated by free agency,but Matthews is a very good defensive outfielder(plays center and right)who could move Ordonez to DH.He is also a switch hitter with some power and a pretty good base runner who could move Granderson out of the leadoff spot,where I think his presence detracts from his overall value to this team.

Chris Y. November 1, 2006 at 12:13 pm

One question: where does all the rush to trade Bonderman come from on this board?

Glad you guys are not DD.

Chris Y. November 1, 2006 at 12:17 pm

And as for the WBC flavor-of-the-month. 30$+million? NO THANKS. All for a guy who hasn’t pitched a game in MLB — that is a huge risk. Could he be an Ichiro, maybe. Could he be a an Ishii, more likely. Remember, Grilli pitched pretty well in the WBC; as much as I like Grilli I am glad he is not a starter, much less making 30 million.

Keep the love at home: hope like hell Bonderman is on this staff for years to come.

Nick November 1, 2006 at 12:22 pm

They could have chosen not to use PEDs and find a different job. They could have chosen to make a stink about the fact that other players were using PEDS (rather than waiting for Caminiti and Canseco to do it for them) rather than use PEDs. They had options, they just chose the PED option. That was their choice (not just Bonds’ choice mind you, but a large number of players choice. So large a number that you have to believe that many current Tigers were using and are using PEDs) and pretending they couldn’t do anything else is being disengenuous.

I don’t deny that drug use is common among young athletes. I do disagree that its use by professional players is the primary cause. The use of PEDs among young athletes has very little to do with “emulating their profesional heroes” and alot to do with trying to succeed in a highly competitive field (and has been common for many years, predating steroids and predating the knowledge that professionals used them). It is the same reason amphetamine use is very high at competitive colleges and high schools (what heros are those guys emulating?). Take away the incentive to succeed (which is currently fame, glory, and a financial success) and it might go away, but to do that you’ll have to stop watching sports (at every level) and get a few million of your friends to do so as well. By watching and financially supporting sports at every level, but especially the profesional level, we help create the environment that encourages PED use.

The White Sox are good example of what you can expect from the Tigers next year. The pitching won’t be as good as it was this year (note: the White Sox made additions in the rotation as well as the lineup) and if we don’t upgrade on offense we won’t be competitive next year. I do agree that Bonderman shouldn’t be traded unless a great offer comes around (or unless he makes it very clear he isn’t willing to sign with the Tigers once FA comes around). Rowand is a good defensive CF with good range, but then again so was the guy that replaced him (Anderson). Regression to the mean is a powerfull force, and hopefully the Tigers don’t choose to simply ignore it.

I wouldn’t mind Mathews for the right price, but the right price isn’t going to happen. He’s going to be paid based on last season, and there is a very good chance last year is the best you’ll ever see from him. He’s a career .336/.419 guy that posted a .371/.495 at 31. He’s got “old version of Adrian Beltre” written all over him, IMO.

I don’t really care much about lineup order and the like, and I think it makes very little difference where Granderson hits.

Nick November 1, 2006 at 12:25 pm

Matsuzaka would be in just as much demand if he had never pitched in the WBC. He’s 26 years and has significantly better stuff than either Ishii or Irabu did before coming over. He’s more likely to be Hideo Nomo than Ishii or Irabu.

I’d love to see the Tigers make a run at him, but realistically they aren’t likely to get him (or Bonds for that matter).

Chris Y. November 1, 2006 at 12:25 pm

Jonathan,

I am not saying get rid of more than a couple of those guys, and only for the right value. I can guarantee you that not more than half those guys end up at the Major League level. That’s just how it is; hype goes well with the word prospect. We have a relatively young core, esp. with regard to pitching, so where and when are ALL those guys going to play WHEN they ALL are ready to be MLB REGULARS? That is an impossible scenario. Impossible.

Now, unless your name is Maybin, you could be comboed together with anothor guy or two to get a QUALITY player or two. And don’t forget that in a number of the trades DD has worked in the past, the “throw-in(s)” was pretty worthwhile; so you may not necessarily be losing all that much.

Kurt November 1, 2006 at 12:41 pm

The steroids issue will continue to be a wash for me. It was not against the rules of baseball, and there’s some evidence it was widespread. I just can’t hold one guy responsible (other than Selig) for what went on in all of baseball. If guys are clean now, it’s time to move on.

Daisuke may be the flavor of month, but he sure as heck looks like the real deal. This isn’t a case of people looking at some stats like a 2 ERA and drooling, it’s scouts looking at his stuff and drooling, too. He is a major league star quality pitcher. Whether he’s worth $30M up front and 10-15M a year, I’m gonna say that’s debatable at best. Whether it’s worth it for the Tigers to spend on him? I’d say he is an upgrade, but he’s not that expensive of an upgrade. So, sure, flirt, but don’t exactly look too seriously unless the cash can’t be better spent elsewhere. You’re gonna wanna hope he goes to an NL team. Don’t sell him short.

Finally, the Tigers must get better this offseason if they want to make the playoffs again in the hypercompetitive Central, and they have the pitching talent in the minors to do it. That doesn’t mean they sell it all. But if there’s a guy who’ll be around a few years who fits the puzzle, by all means, they gotta make a move. The free agency direction doesn’t look all that useful this year. I’d rather the trade not come from the current rotation though.

If the Tigers can’t work something out with Bonderman, I’d rather worry about trading him a year from now. He’s too young, too good and with too much potential to get anything but another young budding star. I don’t want to hear about any of these package deals Henning has been throwing around.

Unless they make that trade and get Daisuke ;)

Chris Y. November 1, 2006 at 12:53 pm

I’d rather pay top-dollar for a Zito or Schmidt than take that kind of chance. But, hey it’s not my money and I hope Illitch has his checkbook ready.

Kurt November 1, 2006 at 1:09 pm

I am convinced, and should have mentioned this in the prior post, the only risk in Daisuke is the injury risk because he has a lot of innings. That’s what would scare me off, a longterm, expensive contract and then he’s hurt all the time.

But I, of course, like Zito. I just figure there’s 0 shot.

Ryan S November 1, 2006 at 2:27 pm

What about going after Carlos Lee? He seems like the type of free agent the Tigers would have a decent shot at. We could play him in right and DH Maggs. Leave the Casey/Shelton platoon at 1B. And most importantly, leave the rotation in tact. I think trading Bonderman would be a collosal blunder. Going forward, I think there’s a good chance he’s our best pitcher. Verlander only has one season under his belt. Hopefully he builds on it, but Bonderman has already shown year to year improvement.

Nick November 1, 2006 at 2:44 pm

Zito will get ace type money, but he’s not really an ace, and Schmidt is a bit older than I’d prefer. If Schmidt isn’t looking for anything more than a 3 year deal he’s a good fit.

Lee would be a good fit, though he’s really not much of a defender and probably would work best at 1B, leaving the OF the way it is. Then we’d either go for another bat at DH or let Thames have the job.

Bob S. November 1, 2006 at 3:02 pm

Nick,your assertion that professional athletes could have either found a different job or dropped a dime on their comrades displays a naivete that,considering the sophistication of your other writing, is obviously feigned.Yeah,they did have options-leaving a profession they loved(and the attendant “fame,glory,and financial success”),becoming a snitch(and anathema among their peers)-that some could have chosen.Unfortunately,greed is a powerful motivator and the ‘honour among thieves’ code of ethics is probably just as widespread in legitimate professions like medicine,law enforcement,and baseball,than among the criminals who it is supposed to describe.
I’m not under any illusions that any current or former Tigers didn’t indulge in the practice.However,Bonds(and Sosa,and McGuire),are the ones who’ve become the public face of the problem due to their assaults on the record books.They’re the ones who also have to suffer the public disdain.
You seem to downplay competive pressures among professional athletes(by not mentioning that reality) but cite the same as being primarily responsible for the use of PEDs among amateurs(which I do agree with,incidentally)-at what point do we outgrow those pressures?
As far as amphetamines,their widespread use in baseball dating back decades is fairly common knowledge.I’m surprised you aren’t aware.

billfer November 1, 2006 at 3:39 pm

Is it naievete or reality? Really, what is the least desirable choice:
1. Being an outcast amongst your peers for blowing the whistle
2. Having to find a new job
3. Breaking the law (this is only true if they were in the US when they were using) and poisoning your body.

It doesn’t matter how much competitive pressure there is, or how much greed there is. Sure those things are a part of the decision, but it’s a decision none the less. It was/is a choice to use PEDs, not an obligation.

Nick November 1, 2006 at 3:48 pm

I think calling it an “honor code among thieves” is pretty apt, “thieves” being the operative word. When it comes to competitive cheating, every player is guilty of either cheating or fostering cheating to protect their teammates. And that’s fine, cheating is therefore part of the game, including steroids, corking a bat, rubbing pine tar on a ball, stealing signs, etc. It just makes it tough for me to care whether or not someone actually used steroids at one time or another.

I’m not downplaying the competitive pressure (at least not intentionally). It is by far the main reason PEDs are a problem at every level. People still have the ability to choose one way or the other, and it is each individuals responsibility to make that choice. Because this stuff is wide spread throughout amateur and professional sports, they even find out well in advance what their options are.

I don’t believe in holding a small number of people (Bonds, Sosa, McGwire) responsible for the actions of a large group of people. If you disdain them because they have been presented to you as the face of a problem everyone else was equally culpable in, then you are just being manipulated. If I’ve got to disdain Bonds for using PEDs, I’d have to do the same for Pudge and Magglio and Inge and everyone else on the Tigers, because I’ve got no reason to think any of them haven’t used them at one time or another. I prefer to view cheating as part of the game, and save my disdain for people like Dmitri Young.

I was well aware of the ampethamine use in baseball, hence my commeny on PEDs predating the existence of steroids.

Jonathon November 1, 2006 at 3:59 pm

Everyone is so gung-ho about signing Lee, Soriano, Matsuzuka, Bonds, Zito, Schmidt, etc. but really are that many changes going to happen? Logically, the team needs a first baseman and a right fielder. Mags should be moved to DH and since Leyland does not seem to want to play Thames, he should be moved this winter. I’ve said it previously and Buster Olney said it on his blog that Mark Teixiera would be a great fit on this team. For what cost though? I don’t know. Re-signing Casey or Stairs would be a good pick-up for the bench and re-signing Jamie Walker is essential. The rotation seems set, maybe an extra arm to deal depending on how Maroth comes back. Bonderman should not be traded unless its for a marquee player (Teixiera?). There are moves to be made though, and I trust DD to make it happen.

Jonathon November 1, 2006 at 4:04 pm

I don’t know how everybody feels about him (personally not interested in him) but Luis Gonzalez is a name that has been thrown around. Could you see a Gonzalez, Granderson, Monroe outfield next year with Mags DHing??

Nick November 1, 2006 at 4:42 pm

Luis has started to decline, and really isn’t any better than Thames at DH, IMO, especially when considering the likely cost differences.

I don’t expect many moves honestly. I expect at the least we’ll add one bat and one reliever (or two if we don’t resign Walker). Ideally I think we add two bats (DH/LF and 1B), a SP, and one or two relievers. We’ll probably end up somewhere in between that, barring a major shake up kind of move.

Kurt November 1, 2006 at 4:43 pm

Jonathon, I expect one of the following:

1) major signing, minor trade
2) Major trade, minor signing

That said, that isn’t a lot of moves. I think that’s why about a dozen names have been batted around. We all pretty much expect SOMETHING is going to happen. And we’ve all got our pet ideas of exactly what it is will be done. And if Dombrowski continues to follow his script, we’ll probably all be wrong in the end.

The thing on Lee (my pet since June) is as follows:
vs left: .313 /.354 / .490
vs. right: .296 / .356 / .556

strikeouts: 65, second lowest behind Pujols. And he had 19 steals.

Of course, what we REALLY need is Barry Bonds minus the baggage of him being Barry Bonds. But that’s not going to happen.

Kurt November 1, 2006 at 4:46 pm

edit: strikeouts: 65, second lowest FOR A SLUGGER behind Pujols. And Lee had 19 steals.

Bob S. November 1, 2006 at 5:03 pm

Heckuva choice there,Bilfer.I’m not absolving any individual of the responsibility of what they choose to do.However, pretending that ballplayers are immune to the coercive effects of making 20,50,or 100 times what they could make in more prosaic occupations ,or to getting the Canseco treatment for exposing the problem,is,yes, naive.These are young athletes,not wizened priests or imams.Like Kurt said,by their head in the sand policy,it is ultimately Selig’s and Major League Baseball’s fault that this problem became the monster and embarassment it did.Sadly,everyone who played during this era is a suspect.
I’d almost forgotten how we got where we are in this discussion-the question of whether or not the Tigers should sign Bonds(a moot point-no way would either the Tigers or Bonds entertain the notion).I’ll stand by my answer of no for all the reasons I stated.Bonds reputation as a dick preceeded his ‘conditioning’ program.His skills are declining.The media circus that comes with chasing Aaron’s record,the drug use,the IRS thing,etc. are an inevitable distraction.Any one of those things alone make him a poor risk.Added together,the only thing that would cause me to gamble on him is if I had an American League team where I could hide him at DH(a primary reason I hate that bastardization of the game)and it was the only way I could get people into my park.

Dave from 'The ATL' November 1, 2006 at 5:34 pm

Bob,

You articulated your points well. I think we’ve come full-circle on this ‘Bonds issue’. Bottom-line is Dombrowski wouldn’t make this move anyway and I agree – too many distractions with the HR record. I also agree that ‘pine-tar-use’ and ‘steroid-use’ aren’t even in the same ballpark.

I’m just excited that I get to see my Tigers play down here at Turner Field next summer!

Mark P November 1, 2006 at 6:03 pm

I agree with some of the forumers who are perplexed by the sudden interest in the “big” names. Often these big names do not work out for teams. They take a huge hit on the payroll, lessen flexibility and often get injured. As far as some of the names mentioned. A-Rod is terrible defensively and can never be a SS again. He might work out as an 1B, but we should not pay what the Yankees will demand. Lee is really the only “big” name that is worth his price. Though, why overpay when our outfield is already good.

I also agree with the notion that we have to stick with what got us to where we are…young quality pitching. Trading Bonderman is nuts. He is one pitch away from being dominate. I would prefer trading Maroth for a young left side infielder (who can maybe bat leadoff one day) or a young catcher. We may have to wait to spring training for this though.

Casey would be a good option at 1B, but not at 8 million. Hopefully, he will take less and a 2-yr contract to stay. We should not give up on Shelton. He is only 26 and the stats he put up in the minors is no fluke. The guy can flat out hit.

Why don’t the Tigers look at signing Frank Catalanotto? He is the same age as Maggs, 32. He is left handed and can play LF or RF. He is basically being pushed out of the starting OF in TOR with Rios, Johnson, and Wells. He can be had for cheap ($2.7 mil in ’06). In the last 3 years his stats are .299/.366/.433. His walks and strikeouts for last year were 52/37 (just what the Tigers need). He is not as good against LH pitchers so we could platoon Thames or Maggs in the OF against RH. This would let Maggs DH most of the time. (Which I think we all can agree would be good.) Finally, he could bat lead off with Polanco 2nd. This would let Granderson bat 3rd which is more natural for him. This maintains Leyland L/R/L/R that he loves with the lineup. He would be a good stopgap until Maybin is ready in late ’08.

Signing Casey, Walker, and Catalanotto would fill some holes and not break the bank. We would still have a really potent offense. Then we can trade some excess young pitchers for young position players that we are lacking or make a monster trade

Chris Y. November 1, 2006 at 6:13 pm

I think the concesus is that Casey will not get offered anything near 8$mil/yr this time around. I would say a 2-yr deal at about half that would be more than reasonable.

Jonathon November 1, 2006 at 7:33 pm

Totally agree with you Mark P. and was actually thinking about Catalanatto. He would be an excellent mid price bargain for the team.

Mike November 1, 2006 at 7:44 pm

I will be the first to admit that I thought the signing of Kenny Rogers last year was a mistake. On paper it seemed like we were getting an over-the-hill pitcher who had a history of problems. It seemed to turn out pretty good, though. So, I can’t help but trust DD to make the best decision for the team when it comes to trading/signing players during the off season.

I am in favor of keeping as much of the talent currently in the system as possible. If anything, I think minor tweaking is needed, along with a look toward the future.

Steve November 1, 2006 at 10:30 pm

I get to see many Bluejay games a year and Frankie the Cat would be a decent add for the right price, seems like he is always on base and the fans really like the guy. His fielding is decent so that would give us OF options.

I really want to know the deal with Thames. Leyland gave him the cold sholder during the series, is there something there that we dont know?. Could he be a goner?.

I like Monroe and would love him if he were 25-30 more points in his average to get him to 300. His fielding has vastly improved and he is a great team guy and a professional when it comes to the game, approach and media.

With respect to Don Slaught, I for one can not say oneway or another if he is the man to have. I can say that between all of the new coaches and players added last year we won 90+ games, won the pennent, and I had one heck of a year watching and going to games with my nine year old. If they do that again (only win the WS) Neifi could be batting coach jk, for all I care

My thoughts on who will be gone: Neifi, Thames, Santiago, Minor or Grilli, Casey. Gomez back to Minors. If they can get Jamie Walker for a decent price I would think he stays. They will spend bucks to upgrade these spots. While I love Casey and he did well here, I think we need a long term approach with a healthy body.

Is there any thought to moving Guillen to 1st and having infante play short?, could he get his bat turned around with more playing time. I saw a post about moving Inge to catcher, I say no way they guy is a near gold glove and one the way to hitting .286 next year. The cost to upgrade that position significantly and leave Inge on the bench could be better spent else where.

Kind if a bummer not having a Tiger game to hang with at night.

Steve

Nick November 2, 2006 at 9:39 am

ARod had a bad year defensively, but he isn’t far removed from a gold glove year at 3B. I’m not really sure why he couldn’t move back to SS either, I haven’t really seen any physical decline that would make the move impossible, and lets not forget that he was a gold glove SS as well.

Cat would be an excellent choice as a platoon option with Monroe (assuming we keep him, he’s not worth what he’ll get in aribtration but there might not be any better options) and Thames.

Casey at 4 million per year is still a terrible choice. I guess I don’t get why people like Casey as a baseball player. As a person, sure here aren’t many baseball players that are more likeable. But Casey is slow, has no power, and didn’t even really hit for average last year. And he’s 32 and injury prone. Other than a few months of familiarity, what is the benefit of keeping him?

I just saw billfer’s most recent post. I guess that last paragraph probably belogns there.

Bob S. November 2, 2006 at 11:18 am

I’d been thinking along the same lines of platooning Monroe,only with Luis Gonzales,who still hits RHP pretty well,is widely regarded as a “good” guy/team leader type of player,and probably could be had at a reasonable price at this stage of his career.Then,looking at Monroe’s split stats,saw in print what I realized I already knew(from watching the big home runs he’s hit this year),that Monroe has ridiculous home run power facing RHP compared to LHP.

Nick November 2, 2006 at 2:52 pm

That was true this year, but over the last three years it hasn’t been the case. There is only a difference of about 1.5 per 100 Ab’s the last three years, and that includes this years major split. And in ’03 he had the exact opposite split.

Gonzo wouldn’t be a bad addition as a platoon guy, but he declined quite a bit last year, and excepting him to be more than an average hitter as a full time player is probably asking to much. Finding a solid LH bat to platoon with Monroe and Thames (and spell Ordonez as well) isn’t a bad idea, especially if it frees up more money to make a significant upgrade at 1B.

Marshall in DC November 3, 2006 at 11:01 am

I wouldn’t want Bonds . . .I love his numers but whatever team takes him has to figure he will break Aaron’s mark in their uniform. That will be a huge distraction and it will be accompanied by negative response (thrown siringes anyone?) from most americans who see him as a cheater. Too bad he didn’t pass the mark this year, if he had – I’d actually feel better about aquiring him.

As for moving a pitcher in a trade. I think the Tigers should move at least one.

We almost have too much talent in one area. After the top 4 we have Sanchez out of Toledo, Miller who I think will benefit greatly from a full spring training with the team, Travis Miner who pitched pretty well mid-season and is serviceable and, lest we forget, Mike Maroth who, if he can use the off-season to capture his previous form.

I agree that you can’t have too much good pitching, but we need 1 or 2 better hitters. Even if it means giving up a starter from the mound.

Who I would trade and who I would go after – I’m not sure yet. However – I trust Dave Dombrowski will figure it out.

William November 10, 2006 at 5:52 pm

Bill, what are your thoughts on the Sheffield trade?

William November 10, 2006 at 6:00 pm

Obviously, I missed the entire section on it:)

Charly Streetgang II November 19, 2006 at 12:25 am

I remeber yahoo reporting this summer that Luis Gonzales was complaining quite a bit when he started lossing innings. I’m not sure that dude would want to platoon and maybe he’s not such a class act after all.

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post:

Switch to our mobile site