Holy Freakin Crap

The Tigers have pulled off a franchise altering trade today sending former first round picks Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller, along with Mike Rabelo and 3 minor league pitchers to the Florida Marlins for Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis.

When Dave Dombrowski decides to go for it, boy does he go for it. Like in 1997 when he loaded up for a run at the World Series, Dombrowski has quickly put together what has to be considered the best line up in all of baseball. To do it they had to give up 2 of the blue-est of blue chippers. Normally I frown on such a move, but rarely do you get in return a 24 year old with 138 career home runs and a 313/388/542 line in 2700 at-bats either. The Tigers had to have emptied their farm system, but this isn’t for a player on the wrong side of 30. This is someone who has yet to enter his peak. The Tigers have to sign him to a long term deal for this to work, but I can’t imagine they make this trade without some sort of frame work in place.

As for Dontrelle Willis, his 5+ ERA in a pitchers park in the NL is certainly disconcerting. But the Tigers were giving up a player that was likely to be in their rotation next year, and they had to fill that spot and there are certainly worse ways to do it than with Willis.

The Tigers gave up some seriously talented players, but if you’re going to do it, do it the way the Tigers did and get a couple guys in their mid 20′s in return. Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller are tremendous prospects, but Cabrera is a rare, rare player and for the Tigers to acquire him is a major coup.

As for the other 3 pitchers, Jon Paul Morosi is reporting that they are Burke Badenhop, Dallas Trahern, and Eulogio De La Cruz. Trahern is the prize of this group. He’s a heavy groundball pitcher who was set to pitch for AAA Toledo this year, and was a decent bet to reach the majors in 2008. De La Cruz we saw last year, and he has the potential and stuff to strike out a ton of guys, but he’s still searching for consistency.

The Tigers still have Rick Porcello, who couldn’t be traded yet, and is now the clear top prospect in the system. I’m also pleasantly surprised the Tigers didn’t have to move Jeff Larish, Mike Hollimon, and especially James Skelton.

As for what happens next, the Tigers just have to sign Cabrera long term. They also have some of their own players to move. Cabrera is thought of as a third baseman, but he could play left as well. I don’t know where he’ll play for Detroit and it depends on who they can get for Brandon Inge probably. I know that the Tigers just traded for Jacque Jones, but I don’t think they are married to him.

I applaud Dombrowski and the Tigers for pulling this off. The Tigers have the pieces in place to be a very very special team this year and I can’t wait for spring training. I’ll have more on the trade over the next couple of days.

98 Comments

  1. Dave

    December 4, 2007 at 7:04 pm

    Okay, we have no farm system now. I don’t care.

  2. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 7:09 pm

    I just pooped my pants. OMG.

  3. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 7:12 pm

    Who is going to play where? What happens with Inge? I’m confused. I don’t know what is going.

  4. David G.

    December 4, 2007 at 7:12 pm

    They must be awfullly confident they can and can afford to sign Cabrera long-term. Gonna be some strange financial situations on the horizon, Grandy and Verlander are both gonna need to be paid if they keep it up.

  5. Eric Cioe

    December 4, 2007 at 7:13 pm

    Does this improve our pitching at all?

  6. Sam

    December 4, 2007 at 7:15 pm

    NOOOOO!!!!

    I hate THIS!!!!

    Please, NOOOO!!!

    Willis’s best days are done, Cabera is out of shape and a liability at 3B.

    This is really BAD!

    -Sam

  7. Bobby

    December 4, 2007 at 7:17 pm

    TRULY Murderer’s Row v2008.

    Does it make me happy to give up Miller/Maybin? No. But, with the age of this club, the idea is to WIN NOW.

    Guess what? We’re gonna WIN NOW.

    And this will be the most fun summer in the D in a long, long time.

  8. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 7:18 pm

    I don’t know what to think about this. I don’t think Willis’s best days are behind him. He had ONE bad season, last season. As for the out of shape…. well, can’t say much about that. But what happens to Inge? We suddenly have too many position players. Trade one for a reliever? I guess it is Grandy is center from now on and he won’t be moving to LF.

  9. Mike in CT

    December 4, 2007 at 7:22 pm

    Inge can move back to catcher, right?

    Right now with this lineup Sheffield might bat sixth and Pudge eighth.

    I’ll take Verlander, Bonderman, Rogers, Dontrelle, whoever.

    Grab a bullpen arm and let’s go to war.

  10. potthole

    December 4, 2007 at 7:24 pm

    I’m willing to live with trading Miller… but Maybin?!? If we had kept Gorkys, I might be able to be somewhat alright with losing Cameron, but we all know what happened to Gorkys…

  11. potthole

    December 4, 2007 at 7:25 pm

    Holy crap, I just saw the other names involved in the trade… I’m bummed to lose Badenhop and Trahern too. Also, who backs up Pudge next year with the loss of Rabs?

  12. Matthew

    December 4, 2007 at 7:26 pm

    Huge blockbuster trade that’s for sure. Right now, GOOD trade in my opinion. But what happens when all the old Florida Marlins are gone? Who do Dombrowski and Leyland go after then?

    This is a total hypothetical line-up, with no regard to left/right handed or anything else.

    Verlander
    Rogers
    Willis
    Bonderman
    Robertson

    ??

    And maybe we have one final trade left in our books. Inge might be on his way out with a hefty contract and no at bats to show for. Carbrera will handle 3rd base duties just as well as Inge, maybe not as good, but his much bigger bat won’t make me miss Inge and his home runs when we are already up 7.

  13. Chris in Nashville

    December 4, 2007 at 7:26 pm

    I’m pretty sure we have a solid CF prospect playing CF in Comerica Park right now. Can’t fall in love with your prospects..I guess DD didn’t. Maybe Maybin and Miller turn out to be 10 time all-stars and hall of famers, and this looks bad 10 years from now. BUT, we KNOW Miggy will be playing for us for years to come…at least he better. They better open up their pocket books and give him whatever he wants because he is our future now. Remember, he’s 23.

  14. Dave

    December 4, 2007 at 7:27 pm

    For what it’s worth, Cabrera was never nearly as out of shape as his current persona suggests. Basically, several reports came out of spring training about how much weight he had gained and suddenly it was like he’s the new Cecil Fielder. At any rate, it’s now being reported that Cabrera is slimming down significantly.

    As for Inge, I’d guess he’d either get dealt for bullpen help or become some kind of super-utility man. His defense is still good enough to justify moving Cabrera back to left field.

  15. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 7:27 pm

    CF – Granderson
    2B – Polanco
    RF – Ordonez
    DH – Cabrera
    LF – Sheffield
    1B – Guillen
    SS – Renteria
    C – Pudge
    3B – Inge

    Can Sheffield play everyday at LF? It is what he wanted afterall. This is flabbergasting.

  16. Steve in OH

    December 4, 2007 at 7:28 pm

    I’ll transfer this from my posts in the other thread…

    2008 lineup with last year’s stats – kinda ridiculous…

    1. CF Granderson .361/.552/.302, 74 RBI, 23 HR
    2. 2B Polanco .388/.458/.341, 67 RBI, 9 HR
    3. 3B Cabrera .401/.565/.320, 119 RBI, 34 HR
    4. RF Orzoñez .434/.595/.363, 139 RBI, 28 HR
    5. DH Sheffield .378/.462/.265, 75 RBI, 25 HR (Spent time on IL)
    6. 1B Guillen .357/.502/.296, 102 RBI, 21 HR
    7. SS Renteria .390/.470/.332, 57 RBI, 12 HR (Missed about 30 games)
    8. C Rodriguez .294/.420/.281, 63 RBI, 11 HR
    9. LF Jones .335/.400/.285, 66 RBI, 5 HR (Missed about 20 games)

    7 of the 9 starters for 2008 slugged north (many were WELL north) of .450 last season… wow.

  17. Deaner

    December 4, 2007 at 7:30 pm

    This is GREAT! Don’t worry about Cabrera’s work ethic, Leyland will teach him the right way.

  18. Kyle J

    December 4, 2007 at 7:32 pm

    Holy freaking crap, indeed.

    Excellent move. You’re trading away too potential future studs. But you’re getting two proven studs who are only 24/25 years old. This is basically just taking advantage of the Marlins’ unwillingness to pay anyone more than $5 million/year.

    When do Willis and Cabrera need to be signed to long-term deals? I assume Illitch/DD wouldn’t have made the move if they didn’t plan to lock them up.

    Inge to back-up catcher/utility-man/injury fill-in? We’ve got enough guys with age/injury issues, you could plug him in four or five days a week.

  19. Chris in Nashville

    December 4, 2007 at 7:35 pm

    I could care less about Inge right now…he’s as good as gone. I llike him, but we upgraded A LOT. Tim Kurkijan on ESPNEWS just said to not be surprised to see Miggy play LF or 1b with Guillen going to 1B. I don’t get that…but whatever. As long as all nine players are batting that Steven in OH are talking about…it doesn’t matter.

  20. Kathy

    December 4, 2007 at 7:36 pm

    Cabrera has already lost weight and is working out regularly. Inge is not going to be the catcher. This whole deal is kind of like how Miller got dropped in their laps unexpectedly and Porcello. I’m still in shock.

  21. David

    December 4, 2007 at 7:39 pm

    HOLY HE11, Cabrera and Willis

    If Willis can condition himself to be able to hold up after the ASB and Cabrera can lose some weight in the next few months, wow.

    Too many pitchers given up, but with Verlander, Bonderman, Willis and possibly Bazardo they have a you have 4 pitcher between 23 and 25, add on Robertson, Rogers plus Porcello and others in the minors…

    I hope Inge stays at 3rd and Cabrera moves back to LF, would make Jaque a backup.

  22. David

    December 4, 2007 at 7:41 pm

    Yea my bet is Inge at 3rd and Cabrera at LF,

    Get ready for opening day, this is the year boys

  23. Steve in OH

    December 4, 2007 at 7:46 pm

    More math on the lineup… here’s the average line for the 2008 lineup based on 2007 stats…

    Overall: .371/.492/.309, 85 RBI, 19 HR

    1-7 Hitters: .387/.515/.316, 91 RBI, 22 HR

    Holy hell.

  24. Bix

    December 4, 2007 at 7:46 pm

    Oh. My. God. I know my wife is pregnant and all, but *I* may want to bear DD’s kids right now…we just got two all-stars (and perhaps a future HoFer in Miggy) for prospects. Good ones, but prospects. Dontrelle and Miggy are both 24, both proven.

    Yes, losing Maybin is tough. Yes, losing miller is hard. But this HAS to mean Grandy’s locked up as the CF for 8-10 years (which makes me happy beyond belief). Say what you want about Dontrelle, but I really believe it’s one bad season, and some veteran lefties around to help him might be just what he needs. Go go mentor-Kenny! And as I said a few weeks back, Dontrelle is an AMAZING kid, and will be fantastic in the clubhouse and fun to watch. With Grandy, he’s one of the really GOOD people in baseball. Hell, he can even pinch hit on off days. I want a Willis jersey right now.

    As for Miggy, he is a freaking hitting machine. .320+, with 30+ and 110+ the last few years. Is he a little pudgy? Yeah, but that might change on a contender with veteran leadership. Defensively, I’ll have to look, but the guy has almost singlehandedly won the FLB title for his owner the last two years…he’s a MONSTER.

    Lineup –
    Polanco
    Granderson
    Cabrera
    Ordonez
    Sheffield
    Renteria
    Guillen
    Jones/Thames
    Pudge

    Rotation:
    Verlander
    Dontrelle
    Bonderman
    Kenny
    Nate/Durbin/other

    Oh my god.

    I really could not be happier. I wish Maybin, Miller and Rabelo all the best, and can it be spring training RIGHT NOW??? Please?

  25. Kevin in Austin

    December 4, 2007 at 7:48 pm

    Kathy – fantastic point about what we were able to do with those picks. I’m gonna run over to a Marlins chat board (if one exists) to see what they are saying.

  26. Kevin in Austin

    December 4, 2007 at 7:52 pm

    One doesn’t exist. (well, one worth reading anyway)

  27. Eric Cioe

    December 4, 2007 at 7:55 pm

    Yeah, I like Inge at third and Cabrera in left.

    If Willis can get it together, this is a good deal. Otherwise, it isn’t. I don’t care if Cabrera is A-Rod. We gave up 2 starters that could have made an impact this year, one more that could have pitched in 2009, and a reliever. I guess what this deal tells me is that the Tigers are sold on Bazardo.

  28. Neel

    December 4, 2007 at 7:56 pm

    Great trade!

    At worst, Willis will eat up innings

    Err…at worst, Cabrera will eat up everything else

  29. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 7:58 pm

    I would like it the best if Cabrera could move to LF. Does anyone know if he is capable of doing that? That would give us the aforementioned “semi-iron wall” in the infield. I think we can do that to take some more defense because we got more then enough offense 1-8.

  30. Mike G

    December 4, 2007 at 7:59 pm

    What about Inge in LF platooning with Jones? I know we had Thames pegged for that, but Inge has had a lot of success against LHP in recent years and Jones rakes righties. They seem like natural platoonmates.

    Its sad to see us lose so many arms, but I think we will get by. I kinda hope that Eddie Bonine sticks around and can start really putting it together in AAA and be a fill-in starter.

    I think we have enough promising players in the low minors that we will reload our farm system.

    Cabrera is a stud and will remain among the best hitters in the game for a long time. Plus there were raves about how he had lost 15-20 pounds and looked leaner and more muscular. Hes going to be a superstar for a long time.

    Also the Tigers how have the two winningest pitchers 25&under (Willis 68, Bonderman 56). Thats not to say that hes great, but hes also not a waste. He may have a lot of promise in his arm if he can get straightened out. He should be a fun guy to watch and a fun guy to have around as well.

  31. Bob s

    December 4, 2007 at 7:59 pm

    Nice. I like it.
    I trust DD to back fill the farm , he has a couple years yet.
    Trade for Maybin and DD is cannonized.
    Maybee DD can consult for the lions.

    Get those Tiger tickets Now!

  32. Kyle M

    December 4, 2007 at 8:00 pm

    This is an amazing trade. It helps both teams allowing Florida to win in a few years and allowing us to win both now and into the future. This may carpet bomb our system, but Cabrera and Willis are both in their mid-twenties. We may fret about what miller & maybin will do in 3 or 4 years but Cabrera will just be into his prime.

    As for defense, there was another great young hitter a few years ago who struggled in the OF and at 3B but could really mash. His name : Albert Pujols. You may have heard out him.

    Tiger fans, wrap your arms around the fact that we will get to watch the greatest history to wear the old english D since #6. If we can get him signed to a long term deal, and you have to think that Mr. Illitch will come out of pocket to pay him, he will put up crazy numbers for us.

    If you don’t believe that Cabrera can have a statue in CF with Cobb, Kaline, Charlie G, etc, here are the offensive age comparables for Cabrera in his first four full seasons, from baseball-reference.com:

    Age 21: Hank Aaron
    Age 22: Hank Aaron
    Age 23: Hank Aaron
    Age 24: Hank Aaron

    Holy Freakin Crap is right!

  33. BobS.

    December 4, 2007 at 8:04 pm

    Cabrera played the outfield for Florida in the World Series his rookie year,Michael.

  34. Mark P.

    December 4, 2007 at 8:05 pm

    Who cares if Cabrera is a little pudgy. So was Puckett and Gywnn and they were still hall of famers.

    I want baseball to start tomorrow.

  35. Adam

    December 4, 2007 at 8:06 pm

    Dudes, what about Thames? Thames / Jones in LF, Miggy at 3B,

    Inge…gone.

    I like Inge too, but are you really going to keep a .220 hitter over a .320 hitter with 35 home runs?

    Otherwise you’re saying we’re getting rid of Thames and Jones and keeping Inge…which I think is basically not smart.

  36. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 8:06 pm

    Thanks Bob! Then I definetely say….

    CF – Granderson
    2B – Polanco
    RF – Ordonez
    LF – Cabrera
    DH – Sheffield
    1B – Guillen
    SS – Renteria
    C – Pudge
    3B – Inge

    Better then the 2006 Yankees….. AND WE HAVE PITCHING!!!!! Now let’s go get some bullpen arms. Anyone know what is going on with LaTroy Hawkins?

  37. Rings

    December 4, 2007 at 8:07 pm

    Tigs obviously feel that Grandy is the long-term answer in CF and Maybin wasn’t going to work in LF. And “potential” is not “realized”

    Miggy will be at 3B, and is reportedly in very good shape after spending the winter with a personal trainer. I read a quote saying he’s down at least 15 lbs and is determined to have take the next step.

    And sorry Sam & David (above), the Tigers have lost patience with Inge. He has a reasonable contract – and many fans around the league with his physical tools – and is probably the most tradeable among Thames/Durbin that are mentioned by the Freep as expedible. Otherwise, he’s a utility guy again and will probably have to haul the catcher’s gear out.

    If they stay healthy, the Tigers have a great shot at the best lineup and rotation in baseball, top-to-bottom. Win NOW.

    Leylands biggest problem is going to be managing expectations and massaging the egos of Pudge and Sheffield, as they’ll probably have to drop in the order. Our only LH bats will be Grandy, Guillen (SH) and Jones, with Santiago (SH) on the bench.

  38. Adam

    December 4, 2007 at 8:10 pm

    I just realized we got to keep Raburn. That’s another very good thing.

  39. BobS.

    December 4, 2007 at 8:11 pm

    With some combination of Cabrera,Ordonez,and Sheffield hitting 3-4-5,I’d hit Guillen leadoff and bat Granderson 6.

  40. Rings

    December 4, 2007 at 8:11 pm

    Its very unlikely Inge will be favored in LF over Thames in a Jones platoon…Marcus is .250 with “historic” power, based on career HR/AB. Brandon is a .230 guy with very average power. Inge also has more value as a utility guy or in trade than Thames.

  41. Chris in Nashville

    December 4, 2007 at 8:13 pm

    If we get rid of Jones altogether, we become even more of a completely RH dominated lineup. Don’t think it really matters with the absolute unreal talent we have in this lineup now though. I am still in shock.

    I think they will hold on to Jones as depth. I think Bilfer nailed it about Inge..if they can get something in return, like a solid relief pitcher, then I think he’s gone, Miggy is at 3B. If no deal comes to fruition, you’ll probably see Miggy in LF. If the Cardinals trade Rolen, the Cards will probably looking to fill the 3B position…a willing trade partner perhaps.

  42. Mark in Chicago

    December 4, 2007 at 8:19 pm

    Cabrera’s OPS+ the last three years:

    2005: 151 (4th in MLB in runs created)
    2006: 159 (4th in MLB in runs created)
    2007: 150 (6th in MLB in runs created)

    So he’s been 50% better than the average MLB player each of the last three years.

    Should be fun when he finally hits his prime.

  43. Don

    December 4, 2007 at 8:23 pm

    Nate Silver, Baseballprospectus.com guru, loves the trade for the tigers:

    “I grew up in East Lansing, Michigan, you know. I might or might not be wearing a Tigers cap as I type this. So you’ll excuse me if I have a hard time remaining objective about these things. But I can’t help but like what the Tigers’ blockbuster move for Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis is going to do for that club.

    Here’s the key number in this deal: Four.

    Four is the number of relatively cheap arbitration-eligible seasons that the Tigers are picking up between Cabrera and Willis. Half of the league is willing to bend over backward — perhaps giving up a package analogous to what the Tigers just gave up — for one season of Johan Santana. Although Willis is not the pitcher than Santana is by a long shot, he’s an excellent buy-low guy who was mostly victimized by some poor defense and some poor luck in Miami last year, and an extremely viable #2/#3 starter. And Cabrera might well be the equal of Santana in terms of 2008 value. In terms of overall value, the Tigers are getting perhaps three times as much incoming value as the Red Sox might get for one year of Santana.

    Four is also the number of high draft picks that the Tigers will get if Cabrera and Willis eventually depart for free agency. For a team that drafts as aggressively as the Tigers do — those picks could turn into four more Rick Porcellos — that’s an extremely non-trivial factor.

    Finally, four is the number of American League teams that make the playoffs. This trade addresses clear areas of need for the Tigers, and could easily be worth as many as seven or eight games in the wins column. From my vantage point, the Tigers, Indians, Yankees and Red Sox are now in a four-way tie for the Best Team in Baseball heading into 2008; it’s going to be fascinating to see which of the those teams is the odd man out.

    I’m just about finishing up the hitter PECOTA’s, so a quick note on Maybin: the system likes him, but does not love him, regarding him to be well behind the Jay Bruce / Evan Longoria class of prospects. In particular, it has him getting up to an EqBA/EqOBP/EqSLG of .267/.357/.460 (.284 EqA) by the time he hits age 25, with roughly league-average defense in center field. It also has him at .248/.330/.428 for 2008 (.261 EqA), which means that he’s probably ready to step into a major league lineup right now for a second-division club like the Marlins. That’s potentially quite valuable, but not necessarily All-Star caliber, as PECOTA has quite a few concerns about Maybin’s strikeout rate.”

  44. Jim

    December 4, 2007 at 8:27 pm

    Throw Miggy in left field. I like the trade but like Bilfer said we need to sign him to an extension

  45. Jeff

    December 4, 2007 at 8:29 pm

    Great great trade, gutsy to boot.

    Cabrera’s playing third base. The whole point here was to upgrade the offense yet again. Inge can be the super sub and will get plenty of playing time. But he won’t be putting up a .750 OPS over 150 games next year, and that will help a lot.

    Just imagine if the Tigers had been able to get A-Rod, a young less expensive A-Rod, for Maybin. I’d do that in a minute. That’s what this deal is.

  46. Lee Panas

    December 4, 2007 at 8:29 pm

    It’s still hard to believe this trade is real. I like it a lot if they can get Cabrera signed long term. It’s hard to imagine Dombrowski making this deal if he didn’t think he could extend him.

    Lee

  47. Mark in Chicago

    December 4, 2007 at 8:30 pm

    Incidentally, Dontrelle’s ERA+ from each of the last 4 years:

    2004: 102 (1.37 WHIP)
    2005: 151 (1.13 WHIP)
    2006: 112 (1.42 WHIP)
    2007: 83 (1.60 WHIP)

    So you see, he was quite bad last year, but there is no way to draw any conclusion there is a trend. I remember (anecdotally) seeing a video clip that the Marlins had slowed his delivery down and gotten him more compact, which was a change in mechanics from what made him successful. Hopefully – HOPEFULLY – that is all it is and Chuckles Hernandez can right the ship.

    If he does, well, we’ve got a bona fide ace who is just 26 years old.

    As for the contracts of all this, I have a feeling DD will get the deals done, assuming everyone stays healthy and productive.

    My guess is the Tigers trade Inge to the Brewers (who need a 3b and their Rolen deal fell through) for an arm/prospect.

  48. Don

    December 4, 2007 at 8:32 pm

    Would a “platoon” like this work:
    vs RHP: Jones in LF and Cabrera at 3B
    vs LHP: Cabrera in LF and Inge at 3B.

  49. Chuck Hildebrandt

    December 4, 2007 at 8:35 pm

    Like I said on Motownsports: I hope I don’t die before Opening Day.

  50. Pete G.

    December 4, 2007 at 8:41 pm

    Wow! Credit goes to DD but don’t forget Mr. I. He had to be the one to say “If you get ‘em, we can sign ‘em”. I think he enjoyed the trip to the “Big Dance” in ’06 and wants to go back…. now! We still need someone to catch 50 games or so….but…Wow!

  51. Don

    December 4, 2007 at 8:47 pm

    also, even if we don’t resign cabrera and willis, we still get 2 first round picks and 2 supplemental first rounders when they leave. nice.

  52. Eric Jackson

    December 4, 2007 at 8:48 pm

    Willis sure sounds excited:

    “I’m in Mexico right now with my family. I’m kind of busy,” he told The Associated Press.

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.c.....index.html

  53. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 8:59 pm

    This one really did come out of left field…. It is going to be interesting going against Boston. Now I hope somehow they don’t get Santana…. If they don’t, the AL is ours to take. I’d much rather the Yanks get Santana because they are not as scary, with or without Santana.

  54. Mike F

    December 4, 2007 at 9:02 pm

    And don’t forget that in four or five years both Miller and Maybin will be on the trading block themselves.

  55. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 9:03 pm

    @ the guy with the same name as me: ….hehehe….

  56. Keith

    December 4, 2007 at 9:04 pm

    An excellent trade for both teams. I’m always in favor of trading minor league talent for major league players in an effort to win now as long as it doesn’t set the franchise back. This trade is one of the best deals i’ve seen for not only the Tigers, but Detroit sports overall. Maybin and Miller will most likely be rock solid major leaguers , if not Major League phenoms, but we’ve aquired so much potential that’s already proven, it’s well worth the risk.

    MLB has been put on notice. Mike Illitch will spend to win and the Detroit Tigers play big markey baseball. Thanks go out to NHL commish Gary Bettman for installing a cap in the NHL and forcing one of the best owners (who is also a huge fan), in pro sports to flex his muscles in baseball.

    What’s the spread on the Fernando Rodney – Dontrell Willis crooked hat competition? I’ve got my money on Willis with a backwards cap before the All-Star break.

  57. Jon D

    December 4, 2007 at 9:05 pm

    I’m glad most like this deal as I absolutely love it…

    and I have to agree with someone previously… I hope I’m alive for opening day! This is a fantastic deal and I appreciate your work and comments Billfer.. great job!

  58. David

    December 4, 2007 at 9:17 pm

    Two things

    How many Former Marlins can you name?

    Nate Robertson, Jim Leyland, Dombrowski, Todd Jones, Bazardo, Sheffield, Rentaria, Willis, Cabrera

    Also – Dontrell historically has normally done really well the first half… Maybe some of Kenny will rub off on him.

    Hopefully Bonderman and Sheffield stay healthy.

    Now with all this offense it compounds itself – Guillen has protection, Rentaria, Shef

    I think the Lineup has to go like this

    Granderson – set
    Polanco – set
    Cabrera – best hitter 3rd
    Ordonez – set
    Guillen/Sheffield
    Sheffield/Guillen
    Rentaria
    Pudge
    Inge

    For the rotation

    Verlander R
    Rogers L
    Bonderman R
    Willis L
    Robertson L

    Closer
    Jones

    Setup
    1Rodney
    2? Dotel?

    Yikes 105 wins even with injuries seems reasonable to me

    BTW while the Chi Sox have gotten worse IMO – losing Garland
    Twinkies – Garza gone and dumping Santana (who knows how effective Liriano will be)

    But the Royals young talent is a year older plus they added the Japanese pitcher and Jose Guillen plus looking to add Andruw Jones (scary?)

    Indians had a lucky year last year like we had in ’06

    My guess is that after us it would be Cleveland or KC then Minny then Chicago

    I really think KC is now as upgraded as us – but we weren’t healthy and we were better to begin with

  59. Steve

    December 4, 2007 at 9:24 pm

    Well two Words come to mind

    Merry

    Christmas.

    I had a killer day at the office read Billfers previous post (so much for the not much going on line) cam home and saw this.

    Tigers will be killers next year and it will be great to see them mash in the AL. I wonder what the Indians are thinking … They just came off a pretty good year, the tigers man up a month ago and get a little better and then BOOM BOOM out go the lights with this gem.

    Wouldn’t you like to have a Rod Allen sound byte now.

    Merry Christmas to all us good guy (and girl) Tiger fans from the Double D

    Steve

  60. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 9:26 pm

    LET’S GO GET SANTANA!

    Here is Santana not going to NY or BOS.

  61. Steve

    December 4, 2007 at 9:29 pm

    Mike,

    Great thought but we would need to give up Billfer and Porcello to get him.

  62. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 9:30 pm

    Oh I know it wouldn’t happen, haha. I just do not want BOS or NY to get them….

  63. BobS.

    December 4, 2007 at 9:33 pm

    …Willis,Cabrera…Rodriguez?

  64. Steve

    December 4, 2007 at 9:41 pm

    One thing to keep in mind here is that the reason we could trade the pitching prospects is because we have solid pitching. The NYY dropped off on Cabrera becuase they could not afford to trade any more prospects. DD has us well stocked as he should from the years we had great picks because we stunk and because Mike was not afraid to spend cash to get the hard to sign guys.

    We have a solid team, gave up some talent but MAN we will be able to mash next year and have great pitching. Bullpen is not a strong as I would like but think of this. What team other than the Tigers would you put your money on night in and night out (Pete Rose you are not included on this). If / When Z comes back we are set. Dont you think Dontrelle and Miguel are pumped to come to a team that has a great line up and will win.

    Steve

  65. Ryan S

    December 4, 2007 at 9:43 pm

    It’s funny how you react to trades like this. At first, I was horrified that we traded our two best prospects…then I reread the words MIGUEL CABRERA!!! I’m still too shocked to know what to think, except that we got a LOT better today.

  66. Eric Jackson

    December 4, 2007 at 9:45 pm

    David, you left out Grilli and Irod.

    If they get it done like FLA did, then I have no problem with it :)

  67. Alex

    December 4, 2007 at 9:57 pm

    Holy Freaking Crap is right…it’s gonna be a hell of a year!

  68. cib

    December 4, 2007 at 10:11 pm

    Forget it Steve, Billfer is Untouchable, lol.

    Wow. Amazing. As I told my daughter in the car, an HISTORIC trade.

  69. Alex

    December 4, 2007 at 10:11 pm

    Dombrowski continues to prove he’s one of the best GMs in baseball.

    I can’t tell you how happy I am we didn’t let the Granderson/Maybin debate get above anything but a murmur. Grandy is the heart, soul, and public persona of our Tiggs. He’ll only get better, not that he’s not phenomenal already!

    Sad to see Inge go…assuming he does. I said all last year that we shouldn’t pick up Pudge’s option, and move Inge back to catcher. Pudge, as you will no doubt be aware, had a down year both offensively and especially defensively, willing the gold glove on nothing but not reputation. I suggested the switch to catcher for Inge to justify the potential signing of ARod, to free up 3rd. Now that we’ve got Miggy, I kinda wish we’d done the same thing.

    Good though he was, and even though I am a Tar Heel myself, I won’t be missing Andrew Miller. Talk to me in 8 years after he’s one a few Cy Youngs and I might be singing a different tune…but Willis will provide proven longevity to our rotation. We couldn’t have Miller splitting time again. He was just a little too green. It’s a shame we don’t also get the benefit of Willis’ bat, aside from interleague play.

    My two most intriguing story lines: #1 How well Kenny and Dontrelle pitch coming off disappointing (for different reasons obviously) years for both. #2 I want to see if Renteria can keep up his habit of playing well everywhere except Boston. I sure hope so.

    My lineup.

    Granderson
    Polanco
    Cabrera
    Ordonez
    Sheffield
    Renteria
    Jones
    Rodriguez
    Guillen

    Rotation
    Verlander
    Bonderman
    Willis
    Rogers
    Robertson

    Feels like a pennant to me!

  70. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 10:25 pm

    Why are you having Guillen bat 9th?

  71. Spot Starters

    December 4, 2007 at 10:52 pm

    I think it’s huge that the Tigers didn’t have to part with any of their offensive talent. Sure Granderson and Cabrera are young and should be very good for a long time, but beyond that, a lot of the guys are getting up there in years just a bit. Holding on to Sizemore and Larish and the like is terrific. I’m confident that DD will have the Minor Leagues stocked again after a strong draft next June.

  72. Rings

    December 4, 2007 at 11:05 pm

    Its funny reading the comments at how many people are still trying to keep Inge in their lineups and/or moving Miggy to LF. Cabrera is a HOF talent. He’s going to play where he’s most comfortable. That’s 3B.
    No one is going to make any effort to keep Brandon’s bat in the lineup. His days as a regular for Detroit are over, barring injury.
    The last time he lost his position due to an acquisition (Pudge), he turned in his best season as a super-sub. If he’s not dealt, he’ll be a sub/defensive replacement again, albeit an expensive one.
    That being said, every lineup we come up with at this point look AWESOME.
    Let’s stay healthy…
    Go Tigers!

  73. glenn

    December 4, 2007 at 11:05 pm

    First thing they have to do is move the left field fence in just a little bit more. It’ll give Cabrera an even easier target, plus make it just a little easier for him to cover ground when he’s out there. I say ten feet oughta do it.

  74. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 11:26 pm

    Who do we shop for a bullpen arm if we don’t sign Hawkins/Dotel? Could we get a good pitcher for Inge/Thames? I’d much rather just sign one. Hopefully the fact we just got a lot better makes it more attractive to come to Detroit.

  75. Adam

    December 4, 2007 at 11:38 pm

    You have to bat Rodriguez 9th. Duh.

    Haha.

  76. Mark P.

    December 4, 2007 at 11:40 pm

    What would it take to get one of these relievers: Qualls, Rauch, Cordero, or Wheeler?

    What about a reliever from the Giants for Inge?

  77. feilong80

    December 4, 2007 at 11:41 pm

    Totally awesome trade. I love it. LOVE IT. You are getting proven young players that can be Tigers for years on end! This is so exciting!

  78. Michael

    December 4, 2007 at 11:47 pm

    Well didn’t Cordero get signed? Or are you talking the Nats one?

    Comments from Dontrelle coming up on Sportscenter after the USC-Memphis game.

  79. Steve in OH

    December 4, 2007 at 11:55 pm

    ^ Of all the f’in games to go to OT… there’s no way I’m missing SportsCenter right now, but I was hoping to get to bed at a decent hour – oh well

  80. Steve in OH

    December 5, 2007 at 12:02 am

    I certainly like what Willis sounded like on the phone on ESPN… sounds super-excited and seems to be a great personality. Just made me even happier about the whole thing, if that’s possible.

  81. Slashpyne

    December 5, 2007 at 12:07 am

    I am so buying the MLB package on satellite next year!!
    MLB gameday audio won’t be enough!
    I hope Inge would be willing to move back to catcher, considering the lack catching talent in the farm system
    (and the MLB in general).
    I think Inge could be a top-tier defensive catcher. His hitting line would certainly look better as a catcher than as a 3rd baseman.

  82. ron

    December 5, 2007 at 12:52 am

    Oh, the humanity!!! Keep Inge to fill in late defensively when we want to rest guys with an 8 or 9 run lead. Murderer’s Row? We are the new Evil Empire. We got a lot to live up to. No excuses now.

  83. ron

    December 5, 2007 at 12:57 am

    Don’t forget Bautista.

  84. ron

    December 5, 2007 at 1:07 am

    Could Anthony be DD? He did hint at something big.

  85. ron

    December 5, 2007 at 1:18 am

    Even Santana couldn’t get through this linup without some major damage.

  86. Michael

    December 5, 2007 at 1:26 am

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/.....id=3141315

    We got a pitcher… but nothing to talk about.

  87. Steve in Kzoo

    December 5, 2007 at 3:03 am

    HOLY CRAP!!!!! Of all the days to be in my car all day. Geez, an unbelievable, incredible, insane, selling the farm, sweet, awesome, spactacular TRADE!!!! When I was listening to 97.1fm and they said during the Red Wings game that the Tigers pulled off a blockbuster trade, I was like who did we get and who did we give up.

    Here’s what I thought at first:

    Andrew Miller + prospects —-> Dan Haren

    or

    Cameron Maybin, Miller, +prospects —-> J. Santana, and J. Nathan

    Then the trade was announced. This came out from nowhere. I was speechless then just started to swear because it was just unbelievable. I couldn’t believe we just got the best 3B and SP on the market(besides Santana). Holy S*** I thought.

    This trade was a true masterpiece done by DD. While we gave up awesome prospects for Cabrera and Willis we want it now. I said before that we weren’t in a WIN NOW mode well I difinitely stand corrected. DD is in WIN NOW. Though signing Cabrera to a 5-8 year deal for 150 million would be very satifying and him being only 24 and Willis 25 (2005 Cy Young winner) we have solid young talent in return for prospects. They may be awesome but they have only potential and were not proven. Miggy and D-Train are proven and we needed to move. Willis will bounce back and Miggy will regress slightly like Maggs. But this is one team to FEAR!!!!! in 2008. We are now Murderers row and the Evil Empire.

    Lineup 2008

    1. Granderson CF
    2. Polanco 2B
    3. Cabrera 3B
    4. Ordonez RF
    5. Sheffield DH
    6. Guillen 1B
    7. Renteria SS
    8. Jones/Thames LF
    9. Pudge C

    Rotation

    1. Verlander
    2. Bonderman
    3. Willis
    4. Rodgers
    5. Robertson

    Setup/Closer
    SU – ????
    CP – Jones

    This is just an unbelievable team in 2008 a very special team. Tigers are the TEAM to be in 2008. And even the WS champs BoSox manager Terry Franconone said “Im glad we arent in the same division, that lineup just got scary.”

    GO TIGERS 2008 and beyond!!!

  88. Jackson in Austin, Texas

    December 5, 2007 at 3:07 am

    We traded for 2 proven stars and gave up a couple of can’t miss prospects with Cameron and Andrew….but the best trades work out for both teams…..I think that this also increases the chances of Graderson being a Tiger for life…That alone makes it good….I like the idea of keeping Inge at 3rd…I just hope Bonderman and Rogers stay healthy….

  89. Jackson in Austin, Texas

    December 5, 2007 at 3:09 am

    BTW, Willis was runner up in 2005….Chris Carpenter barley beat him out…..

  90. EZ

    December 5, 2007 at 9:35 am

    I can’t wait to buy a hot dog from Inge :)))))

    Hey Brandon, I will take two with mustard!

    Phenominal trade. No more 150k’s in 500 ab’s from 3rd base, coupled with a shocking lack of power. We just traded a Porche to replace a jaloppy. Yeah, most everyone loves that old jaloppy, but that jaloppy really it isn’t worth anything.

    Starting pitching has been improved. The only thing that can beat us now is our own bullpen… Jimmy, please no more Todd Jones for two innings. Pitch him 3-4 days per week, 1 (that’s one!) inning per outing. Zumaya, please please heal that wing.

    Also, there is no way Bondo and Verlander pitch on consecutive days…. look for R-L-R-L-L or R-L-L-R-L

    My guess (and hope) is:

    Verlander
    Willis
    Rogers
    Bondo
    Robertson

    Bondo and Nate should dominate against other teams fourth and fifth starters. Willis gets the tough task of matching up against other number two pitchers. Verlander should get us 15-19 wins and Bondo and Nate should get us 13-16 each from those slots, while eating up a ton of innings saving our pullpen for use when Rogers and Willis is on the hill. If Kenny can stay healthy and get us 6 innings per start and our lineup produces like it should… this is a 100 win team, even in the Central.

    If I see Dave Dombrowski in a bar he will never have to pay for a drink as long as I am there! Thanks Mr. I and DD!

    Brandon, where are my dogs???????????

  91. tiff

    December 5, 2007 at 10:07 am

    Wrap those boys in bubble wrap til Spring!

    Just bought my Tigerfest tickets, now extremely considering season tickets, as single game tickets will probably be impossible!

    And weren’t we saying that the Nashville meetings would be relatively quiet for the Tigers? Way to go, DD.

  92. Stephen

    December 5, 2007 at 10:30 am

    http://www.cameronmaybin.tv/
    get a last glimpse of this website, i’m guessing it’s going to have a ‘under construction’ banner on it at any moment. no more ‘eye of the tiger’ music, no more proclamations of cam as most exciting position player since kirk gibson…

  93. ron

    December 5, 2007 at 11:01 am

    Willis got heart.

  94. Jojo Sun Devil

    December 5, 2007 at 11:05 am

    Great deal!

  95. Larry

    December 5, 2007 at 3:16 pm

    This can’t be true. Let me pinch myself. When I heard this news last night my immediate first thought was I feel sorry for the other teams pitchers – NOT!!! For all of you Brandon Inge lovers out there, stop thinking the Tigers are going to play him anymore. As a matter of fact, I bet DD is trying to unload him and his contract right now. Has anyone heard how Wilson’s repaired arm is coming along? He is a key to everything right now. Maybe DD has it in the back of his mind that Inge would be willing to be the back-up catcher. The other back-up positions are taken.

  96. Scott

    December 6, 2007 at 12:18 pm

    I think this is a good trade – as long as the “injury bugaboo” stays away. But that’s unpredictable, so we just have to ride with that. Does this trade help the team? Of course. In my mind, Maybin and Miller weren’t quite ready for The Show. Maybin has a weak arm out there; LF would be the only spot out there for him. And Miller – - watching him last year…he just didn’t have good command of his pitches. So, both these guys, while great prospects, just weren’t ready. But the real key will be the injury situation: if Willis + Cabrera stay healthy, the Tigers will’ve gotten the better end of this.

    And Inge – what can you say about him? He’s great defensively, but you can’t keep anybody in the lineup who K’s +150 times. You just can’t. If they can trade him, then do it…..immediately. If not, then it’s utility-time for him – he’s got some value, being able to play C, 3B, or OF. But every day player? No mas, no mas.

    I hope the Tiges got a SS in the minors; the next “problem spot.” Renteria is a short-term fix; he’s not young. They had to move Guillen to 1st, his gimpy knees can’t handle the strain at SS anymore, and his power needs to be utilized. Casey, while a great guy, exhibited no power (what, 3 HR’s?) from a position that should be a “power position.” Isn’t there a 20 year old Trammell around somewhere? So, if we could trade Inge for a young SS…..even a top SS prospect, I say: go for it.

    Ok Baseball Gods……I’m making offerings to yous guys…….NO INJURIES…….

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