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Sunday, January 18, 2015

Max Scherzer closing in on new multiyear contract - ESPN

According to the Washington Post, the Nationals are the favorite to land Scherzer and are “very close” to a deal.

A source told ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark that the Nationals won’t have the financial flexibility to sign Scherzer unless they have a trade in place to move starter Jordan Zimmermann and possibly shortstop Ian Desmond. As of Saturday, Stark reports, the Nationals did not have trades in place for either Zimmermann or Desmond.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 18, 2015 at 09:58 PM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, max scherzer, nationals, tigers

Friday, January 09, 2015

5 bold predictions for the rest of the MLB offseason. | SportsonEarth.com : Anthony Castrovince Article

Alas, nobody’s seriously expecting the 20-second pitch clock—the best of the pace-of-play procedures tested in the Arizona Fall League—to be instituted anytime soon, but one league source said the “one foot in the batter’s box” rule that was also tested does have some legs (pun intended).


Thursday, January 08, 2015

The Sporting News: Why we picked the Cubs to win the 2015 World Series

Here you go #Cubs fans. Suitable for framing ... @sportingnews pic.twitter.com/BEcuvJjoyJ

— Mike Berardino (@MikeBerardino) January 8, 2015 ” cols=“100” rows=“20”>

But can they beat the Miami Gators?

It’s not just because of “Back to the Future 2,” when the Cubs were a 100-1 shot, and Marty McFly got the idea to go back in time and bet on sports results for which he already knew the outcome. In reality, the Cubs are much better than a 100-1 shot. At 12-1, they are tied with the Tigers as the bettors’ fifth choice behind the Dodgers, Red Sox, Angels and Nationals.

The addition of Jon Lester to the top of the rotation is huge for Chicago, as it means that Jake Arrieta slides into the No. 2 spot, followed by returning free agent Jason Hammel, and then some kind of mix of Kyle Hendricks, Travis Wood, Tsuyoshi Wada, Jacob Turner and Felix Doubront. The depth at the back end of the rotation should allow Chicago to put together a formidable starting five coming out of spring training. Competition is healthy, and you can never have too much pitching….

The real reason to be excited, though, is the Cubs’ bountiful farm system, coupled with savvy trades, is starting to bear fruit for the lineup. First baseman Anthony Rizzo (acquired from the Padres when he was 22) and home-grown shortstop Starlin Castro are the cornerstones of the lineup, both legitimate stars entering their age-25 seasons. The fact that the Cubs were able to get significant action in the major leagues last year for Arismendy Alcantara, Jorge Soler and Javier Baez will help those players settle into their first full big-league campaigns. Eventually, Kris Bryant will be along as well.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 08, 2015 at 09:11 PM | 58 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, the sporting news, tigers, world series predictions

Saturday, January 03, 2015

Tiger Tales: A Detroit Tigers Blog: Tigers Infield Worst in MLB in Preventing Hits On Ground Balls

Lee Panas looks at the Tigers infield defense.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 03, 2015 at 10:07 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: tigers

Thursday, January 01, 2015

Tigers look to keep window of contention open | tigers.com

A lot of good questions about the Tigers.

4. Is Scherzer going to return?
Tigers officials have said repeatedly that they haven’t spoken with Scherzer’s agent, Scott Boras, about a return, and that their best shot to re-sign him was last spring before he hit free agency. And yet, none of the parties involved have ruled out a reunion. They know better after all the deals Boras has done with owner Mike Ilitch and all the times Ilitch has rewarded players who win for him.

Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski gives an update on Max Scherzer and how the club most likely won’t sign him at this point
It’s a mystery, right down to whether Ilitch will have the chance to match a final offer from another club (Boras says he won’t, but an industry source with knowledge of the Tigers’ plans suggests he will). If another team wants Scherzer bad enough, it’s hard to see the Tigers getting in the way. If, on the other hand, Scherzer lingers on the market without a clear direction, the suspense will only build.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 01, 2015 at 08:45 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: tigers

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Detroit Tigers’ Jose Iglesias makes progress toward return to field

“The only thing he hasn’t really done full bore is a sprint on a regular basis on hard ground,” Dombrowski said.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 30, 2014 at 09:37 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: jose iglesias, tigers

Monday, December 29, 2014

Nine possible spots for Max Scherzer: Star FA without a team, or a rumor - CBSSports.com

Will Boras really be able to convince a team to go $200 million on Scherzer?

9. Yankees: Hal Steinbrenner has been weighing Scherzer for weeks, but in recent days indications are Steinbrenner still isn’t ready to dive in, and they’ve said as much. Many rotation question questions carry over from last season, and it appears that for now at least, talented youngster Nate Eovaldi is the answer to McCarthy’s departure. Their starting group could be very good, but there’s a lot of uncertainty, from Mashiro Tanaka’s elbow to CC Sabathia’s knee to Ivan Nova’s elbow to Michael Pineda’s ability to continue to perform. The issue is this: With a 50 percent tax for them, a $28 million salary for Scherzer would cost them $42 million, steep even by Yankees standards.


Top 10 Game-Changing MLB Moments

WHAT ABOUT JETER’S WALK OFF?

Among all the moments on this list, none has a higher WPA than Davis’ June 30 grand slam against Oakland. The Tigers had a win expectancy of 20 percent entering the at-bat. (And that presumes each moment occurs in a vacuum. It didn’t take into account that the light-hitting Davis has never hit more than eight home runs in a season and that Davis had never hit a walk-off shot.)

With one smooth swing, Davis crushed a hanging curveball over the left-field wall, one of the most dramatic moments of the ‘14 season. The swing had its aftereffects, too. The A’s, up 5 ½ games in the AL West at the time, lost three straight, and shortly thereafter would lose the division lead with a mediocre month of July and a flat-out dreadful August. The Tigers, meanwhile, established themselves as the team to catch in the AL Central.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 29, 2014 at 02:15 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: alex gordon, angels, athletics, mike trout, rajai davis, royals, tigers, wpa

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Tigers Acquire Alfredo Simon

The Tigers have officially agreed to a deal with the Reds for starter Alfredo Simon, . A pair of 23-year-olds will be headed to Cincinnati in the trade: shortstop Eugenio Suarez and pitching prospect Jonathan Crawford.

Simon, a veteran righty, is projected by MLBTR and Matt Swartz to earn $5.1MM in his final year of arbitration eligibility.

The District Attorney Posted: December 11, 2014 at 12:42 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: alfredo simon, eugenio suarez, reds, tigers, trades, transactions

CJ Nitkowski on Twitter: “Told Cespedes to Detroit, Porcello to Boston is done.”

I really like this trade. Porcello is another starter who should benefit from the Red Sox infield defense.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 11, 2014 at 09:42 AM | 69 comment(s)
  Beats: red sox, tigers

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Detroit News’ Tom Gage voted into Baseball Hall of Fame

Gage has covered countless Hall of Famers in his career, and next summer in Cooperstown, New York, Gage will be joining them on stage as the winner of the J.G. Taylor Spink Award.

“We’re thrilled for Tom to win this honor,” said Jonathan Wolman, publisher and editor of The Detroit News. “He’s been a master storyteller from the ballparks of America and he’s made the Tigers come alive for our readers. We tip our Olde English D to his terrific coverage, and to the others who were on the ballot. Tom was in strong company from the day of his nomination to the day of his election.”

Gage, 66, won in the closest vote since 2002 — a result that was the product of some good company. He received 167 votes to 161 for the late Furman Bisher of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy, the biggest name nationally among the three, finished with 134.

WHAT????

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 10, 2014 at 02:59 PM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, tigers, tom gage

Friday, December 05, 2014

Yankees To Acquire Didi Gregorius In Three-Team Deal With D-Backs, Tigers

Didi has big shoes to fill, although those shoes don’t necessarily have to cover much ground.

Tigers, whether or not this works out, most likely got FISTERED!

The Yankees, Diamondbacks and Tigers have completed a three-team trade that will send Didi Gregorius to the Yankees, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (Twitter link). Rosenthal adds that Robbie Ray will indeed go from the Tigers to the Diamondbacks and Shane Greene will be heading to the Tigers.


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Detroit Tigers say they won’t re-sign Torii Hunter

Feels like teams are rarely this straightforward about their intentions. I like it, though. Transparency!

Torii Hunter will likely continue to play baseball, but not with the Detroit Tigers.

Tigers general manager/president Dave Dombrowski told reporters today that he called Hunter to tell him he would not be pursued after the club agreed to a four-year contract with designated hitter Victor Martinez.

“I called and said it just didn’t look like it was going to fit the way the club was getting put together,” Dombrowski said. “Thanked him for everything. Absolutely love him. If something changes where we make some changes for one reason or another, that we’re not anticipating, we would still be open. It’s just probably not much of a fit right now.”...

Hunter posted on Instagram this evening: “I had a great 2yrs with the Tigers organization. Thank you fans for accepting and supporting me on the field and in your community. You fans were awesome and I’m gonna miss you guys. I’m glad Christ lead me to Detroit. Now, let’s see where He leads my career from here. Be blessed Detroit!!!”

Although his defensive play in right field showed signs of decline, Hunter hit .304 with 17 home runs and 84 RBIs as in 144 games for the Tigers in 2013 and hit .286 with 17 home runs and 83 RBIs in 142 games this past season…

Dombrowski said he was told Hunter “wants to go out there and play on an every day basis if he can and he thinks he might even be able to play for a couple of years. So in our situation, I said, ‘Probably not going to fit then at this point.’

The District Attorney Posted: November 16, 2014 at 04:55 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, tigers, torii hunter

Friday, November 14, 2014

Grantland: Mike Trout Finally Won the MVP, But Could He Already Be in Decline?

Since the stats weren’t conclusive, I solicited opinions from scouts and scouting executives via email, asking whether “throw him high fastballs” would always be the book on Trout, or whether he’d make an adjustment that would render the strategy obsolete. The responses revealed considerable uncertainty.

“I think there are two incredibly unlikely outcomes,” a scouting director said. “One is that he suddenly starts mashing those pitches. Assuming any player, even a phenomenal talent like Trout just automatically makes every adjustment is dangerous. The other very unlikely outcome is that he makes no adjustment and remains quite mortal against high fastballs. The most likely end result is therefore that he gets better against them, but they do remain a relative weakness. And at some point, pitchers/advance scouts will find another weakness in his game, and we’ll get to ask this question all over again.”


New Blue Jays infielder Travis oozing with talent | Elliot

Oozing? No. He’s not even leaking some talent. I wouldn’t even go so far to say he has scabs of talent. His talent is completely contained within a protective layer of skin.

“I looked right past him at Florida State,” said the evaluator, “then I saw him in the Arizona Fall League last year. Impressive. He makes solid contact and doesn’t strike out a lot. I’ve heard some people throw a Howie Kendrick on him. He might be a second base version of Bill Madlock.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 14, 2014 at 08:10 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, tigers

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Blue Jays, Tigers Swap Anthony Gose, Devon Travis

Is “Devon Travis” the most soap opera-y name since “Blake Hawksworth”?

Wait, there aren’t soap operas anymore, are there.

The Blue Jays announced that they have acquired second base prospect Devon Travis from the Tigers in exchange for center fielder Anthony Gose…

Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski tells Lynn Henning of the Detroit News (Twitter link) that Gose will play center field regularly for the Tigers if all goes according to plan. The fleet-footed Gose is known to be an outstanding defender with a questionable bat, though he carried a fair amount of hype upon reaching the Majors in 2012, as he’d previously ranked as a Top 100 prospect according to Baseball America, MLB.com, Baseball Prospectus and ESPN.

Gose hasn’t hit much in his time in the bigs, compiling a .234/.301/.332 batting line with five homers and 34 steals (in 45 tries) over 616 plate appearances. However, Gose is still just 24 years of age… He’s under team control through the 2019 season and won’t be eligible for arbitration until at least the 2016-17 offseason…

Baseball America ranked Travis as the game’s No. 84 prospect heading into the 2014 season and just today ranked him as the No. 1 prospect in Detroit’s minor league system (though ESPN’s Keith Law still tweets that he considers Travis a “non-prospect)... The 23-year-old appeared in 100 games at Double-A Erie in 2014, batting .298/.358/.460 with 10 homers in 441 plate appearances.

The District Attorney Posted: November 13, 2014 at 12:34 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: anthony gose, blue jays, devon travis, tigers, trades, transactions

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Tigers Close To Re-Signing Victor Martinez

Shop smart…

The Tigers are close to a four-year deal with Victor Martinez, FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports (Twitter link)... Re-signing Martinez was said to be Detroit’s top priority this offseason, despite the potential loss of other key free agents Max Scherzer and Torii Hunter. The 35-year-old Martinez enjoyed perhaps the finest offensive season of his 12-year career in 2014, slashing .335/.409/.565 with a career-high 32 homers. He led the league in both on-base percentage and OPS…

The new contract will guarantee Martinez roughly $70MM over its four-year term, reports Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes (Spanish link).

The District Attorney Posted: November 12, 2014 at 05:00 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, tigers, transactions, victor martinez

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Ex-Tiger Lolich: No comparison between me and Bumgarner

“Pitching three complete games in a World Series is, you know, is sort of a great feat,” Lolich said.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 09, 2014 at 08:12 AM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, madison bumgarner, mickey lolich, tigers

Saturday, November 01, 2014

Tigers extend qualifying offers to Scherzer, V-Mart | MLB.com

The Tigers announced qualifying offers to free agents Max Scherzer and Victor Martinez among a flurry of moves Friday, including the loss of Andy Dirks off waivers to Toronto and Patrick McCoy off waivers to Baltimore.
Detroit also purchased the contract of outfielder Wynton Bernard from low Class A West Michigan and outrighted the contracts of utilityman Don Kelly and reliever Evan Reed to Triple-A Toledo. Shortstop Jose Iglesias, right-hander Drew VerHagen and relievers Bruce Rondon and Luke Putkonen were reinstated from the 60-day disabled list.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 01, 2014 at 08:53 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: tigers

Monday, October 27, 2014

Former Tigers pitcher Jeff Robinson, 52, dies

This sucks. Always liked him as a prospect. Never fully panned out but put together a really nice 1988 season for a good Tigers team that would have made the playoffs had they not collapsed.

Jeff Robinson, a promising pitching prospect in the early 1980s who went on to pitch in nearly 100 games for the Tigers, passed away Sunday afternoon after a seven-month battle with undisclosed health issues. He was 52.

Mike Henneman, Robinson’s roommate in the minors and major leagues, confirmed his death to The News.

Henneman flew from Texas to see Robinson in Missouri last week, knowing the prognosis was grim.

Robinson died at home in Kansas City, surrounded by his wife, Meredith, two sons and a daughter.

Robinson was a third-round pick by the Tigers in 1983 out of Azusa Pacific University and made his major-league debut in 1987, tossing seven innings of one-run ball to beat the White Sox.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 27, 2014 at 01:06 PM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: jeff robinson, obituaries, tigers

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Sunday Notes: Maddon, Cherington, Fixing the Reds, Trusting Buck, more | FanGraphs Baseball

Another great column by David Laurila .

There are a lot of ways to look at how you might augment your offense, but it can’t just be nine guys working a pitching staff over,” said Maddon. “If your goal is to get a starter out of a game, that might be the last thing you want to do. You see a lot of 95-plus out of the pen now, and some of those guys have quality secondary pitches. I think it’s become easier to build bullpens, and it’s rare a team has a bad one.”

The Kansas City Royals are a fit for Maddon’s musings. Not only is their pen dominant, their speed-focused offense posted the lowest walk rate in the game.

“We might possibly need to see a trend away from seeing pitches,” suggested Maddon. “I can see speed – including using it creatively – becoming a more important part of the game. I think the trend might be going back to the way the game had been before the unrealistic home run numbers arrived and walks became prominent. I really don’t know.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 26, 2014 at 01:22 PM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: buck showalter, general, joe maddon, orioles, red sox, reds, tigers

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Dave Dombrowski: Injury worse than expected, Miguel Cabrera ‘is as tough as you can possibly be’ | MLive.com

The Detroit Tigers do not know for sure when Miguel Cabrera will resume baseball activities or play in his first game. They cannot say with 100 percent certainty that he will be ready for the start of spring training or even opening day.

But general manager Dave Dombrowski is certain of one thing: Cabrera showed some extreme toughness by playing through an ankle injury that was significantly worse than it was believed to be.

“He is as tough as you can possibly be,” Dombrowski said. “They cannot even believe once they went in there and looked at it that he could play with the ankle that he had. It’s worse than what we ever would have anticipated.”

Cabrera underwent surgery to have bone spurs in his right ankle removed Wednesday, but he also had two screws inserted to help repair a stress fracture in the navicular bone of his right foot.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2014 at 08:41 AM | 67 comment(s)
  Beats: miguel cabrera, tigers

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Dombrowski told that Iglesias ‘will be fine’ for 2015

Their biggest acquisition this off-season already is on the team — shortstop Jose Iglesias.

Iglesias is ramping up his baseball activity, president and general manager Dave Dombrowski said during the team’s end-of-the-season news conference Tuesday.

“The doctors tell me he’ll be fine,” Dombrowski said. “He’s going to be ready for spring training, he’s going to be ready to go, and he’s over all of his (injuries).”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 19, 2014 at 10:28 AM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: jose iglesias, tigers

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

How the Cardinals became baseball’s best franchise | New York Post

I’d say we should wait until the end of this year’s postseason to make that determination.

No, the Dodgers don’t rank second behind St. Louis in the “Model franchise” standings, and neither do the Yankees. Maybe it’s the Giants, with their third NLCS appearance in five years, though they haven’t qualified for two straight postseasons since 2002-03. It certainly isn’t the Red Sox, who have registered two last-place finishes in the last three seasons.
You could make a case for the Tigers, who join the Cardinals as the only current clubs with four straight playoff appearances. Yet the Tigers just got swept by Baltimore in their ALDS, and they are weighed down by contracts of questionable length and value. They don’t look particularly well-positioned for the future.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 08, 2014 at 08:22 AM | 82 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, giants, playoffs, tigers

Monday, October 06, 2014

Orioles sweep sends Tigers into a Yankees-like winter | New York Post

Are the Tigers really as bad as the Yankees? Except for their bullpen, I say no.

The Tigers have a lot of Yankees in them. In its owner’s obsession for a title, Detroit has grown expensive, star-laden and old.
...
There was a period when Verlander and Miguel Cabrera were simultaneously the best pitcher and hitter on the planet, and last year Cabrera won the MVP and Max Scherzer the Cy Young. Yet, the Tigers were unable to win it all in their primes together, and now have to contemplate Scherzer leaving, and Verlander signed through 2019 and Cabrera through 2023.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 06, 2014 at 09:13 AM | 73 comment(s)
  Beats: tigers

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