The Tiger’s season is about to begin and they are about to break camp (or they already have depending on when I post this). Some things we know for certain. We know most of the starting players:
That’s 21 players, leaving open four spots for bench and bullpen
Tiger’s announced earlier this week that McCann will be the backup catcher… 22
Romine and Perez will both make the team because they are both out of options and too good to pass through waviers… 24
And the last spot probably goes to a left handed reliever, probably Ian Krol.
That makes a pretty damn good team, really.
Here are the questions from last year that still face this team:
Will Chamberlain and Kinsler be any good in the second half?
Will Verlander pitch better than a number 3?
Will Sanchez pitch a full season?
Will Iglesias play a full season?
How much will surgery recovery hamper Martinez and Cabrera?
Will J.D. Martinez perform like last year?
Will Castellanos continue to be the worst third baseman in the game?
What exactly is Nathan at this point in his career?
Will Soria bounce back?
Will Price be David Price all season?
Will the Tigers ever realize the value of Blaine Hardy?
Will Gose hit enough to justify a starting spot?
Will Cespedes turn into the superstar every figured he would be by now?
Will VMart put up numbers anywhere near what he did last year?
I could probably spend all day thinking of questions regarding this team but I think you get the point.
This team is facing a lot of question marks. A lot of things have to go right for this team to make a deep playoff run and while I wouldn’t classify it as crazy to assume, it is difficult to believe.
I believe this team will be good enough to make a playoff run. I think they sit inside one of the game’s tougher divisions that will be difficult to win but I am going to say here and now that they will make the post-season; either as the division champs or as a wild card.
I’m worried about the combo of Cabrera and Victor. Cabrera has become a bit injury prone the last few seasons and his production has dropped off considerably because of it. Victor had a career year at an advanced age and got paid like he is 28. I doubt he can come close to the numbers he put up last year and I’m hoping Cespedes can pick up the slack.
I would prefer this team be more On-base minded. They have a lot of guys that hit for high average and a lot of power but barely get on base. That isn’t how you win. The reason is simple: you eye never goes into the tank while your bat will several times throughout the season. However, I don’t think my wish will come true with the current regime presiding over this team.
My next post will be about my Opening Day experience and the first impression of the team.