Familiar Faces in Playoffs for Tigers Fans

2010postseasonLogo.jpgNot sure if this makes the postseason more or less interesting to you, but if you watch each league’s division series you’ll likely to see lots of former Tigers:

Yankees

Rays

Rangers

Giants

Braves

Phillies

How are Former Tigers Faring in 2010?

Rearview Mirror.jpgLooking around the majors there are plenty of former Tigers doing well — and some not so well. Here’s a look at some of the more notable players and their current numbers:

  • Placido Polanco, Phillies: .314 avg., 6 HR, 42 RBI, .348 OBP. Currently fifth in the N.L. in hitting, which is just another reason the Tigers (and fans) are regretting his departure.

  • Omar Infante, Braves: .347 avg., 7 HR, 37 RBI, .837 OPS From Rob Neyer: “At the moment, he doesn’t have enough plate appearances to qualify [for the batting title]. To reach 502, he needs another 169 in the Braves’ 38 remaining games.”

  • Andres Torres, Giants: .287 avg., 13 HR, 57 RBI, .869 OPS. Torres is the embodiment of stick-to-itiveness. Nearly a decade after he was touted as a centerpiece of the Tigers new wave of young talent, he’s downright essential to the Giants offense. Good for him.

    Continue reading How are Former Tigers Faring in 2010?

Tigers Today: April 2, 2010

BehindHomePlate.jpg

Tigers’ Spring Training Record: 18-10-2

Today’s Game

Tigers @ Brewers | 8:10 p.m. ET – Miller Park, Milwaukee | On the air: WXYT 1270-AM

Pitching Matchup

Max Scherzer, 1-1, 7.15 vs. Doug Davis, 1-1, 5.40 ERA

Continue reading Tigers Today: April 2, 2010

Tigers Today: April 1, 2010

Apologies for the late post. The benefit is that I have today’s results. BehindHomePlate.jpg

Tigers’ Spring Training Record: 18-10-2

Today’s Games

Tigers 4 – Braves 1

The Tigers dinged Jair Jurrjens for a pair of runs on Don Kelly‘s home run and Eddie Bonine pitched four scoreless, one-hit innings to pace the Tigers in the front end of Grapefruit League finale.

Tigers 4 – Astros 2

The only worthwhile tidbit about this matchup of Tigers minor leaguers versus primetime Astros is former Tiger Chris Shelton appearing in the game for Houston. Oh, Brandon Lyon and Tim Byrdak pitched for the Astros.

Continue reading Tigers Today: April 1, 2010

The Top 10 Tigers Stories of 2008: #9 – Edgar Renteria Can’t Play

Number 9Sure, it hurt when the Tigers sent Jair Jurrjens and Gorkys Hernandez to the Braves for Edgar Renteria. There was some — i.e., a tad — concern about Jurrjens’ durability and, well, to get a player of Renteria’s caliber at such a vital position you have to part with some value.

We know how that worked out.

In 2007, Edgar Renteria hit .332 with 12 homers and a .390 on-base percentage. The most glaring part of the Failed Renteria Experiment was his .977 fielding percentage; but that tells only half the story. His fielding percentage was virtually .000 on balls he should’ve had. He and Miguel Cabrera and then Carlos Guillen helped give the Tigers one of the most ineffective left-sides of the infield in the majors.

If not for a strong second-half of the year, Renteria would’ve finished nearly 80 points below his ’07 average. (He batted .254 before the All Star Game, .296 after.)

Now he’s the Giants problem — maybe for two years. For Tigers fans, it only felt like two years that Renteria played in Detroit.

Discuss.

No Surprise: Renteria’s Option Declined

trash bin.jpgSo much for Edgar Renteria‘s beggin’ and pleadin’ for a job on the 2009 Tigers. Word from Dave Dombrowski today is that Detroit won’t pick up #8’s option.

Dombrowski wouldn’t rule out re-signing Renteria as a free agent, but said the club would look at other options.

While the Tigers don’t have a viable option at short — well, they sorta do; Ian and I agree that we could just see Carlos Guillen back at short when all is said and done — but methinks that Dombrowski will be hesitant to bring back Renteria for another dismal season, rubbing more salt into the Jair Jurrjens wound.

Another thought: they could deal for the Rockies’ Clint Barmes or drop David Eckstein into the mix for a year.

Chances are that Renteria will be back in the National League and will somehow manage to hit .330.

Enough Already with the Jurrjens Remorse

BallHand.jpgLast night Armando Galarraga made his 22nd start of the year for the Tigers, defeating the Rangers 11-3 and improving his record to 12-4 and 3.17 ERA. As little as there’s been to cheer about this season, one would think that Galarraga’s emergence as a bona fide starter would be one of them. Instead, Tigers fans seem more fixated on a 22-year-old pitcher who’ll make his 25th start tonight at Shea Stadium, the one with an 11-8 record with a 3.15 ERA: Jair Jurrjens.

Granted, it’s hard not to think about Jurrjens when Edgar Renteria makes an error, lofts another can of corn to left field or otherwise leaves runners stranded. But the reasons — at the moment they made the deal — Detroit sent Jurrjens (and outfielder Gorkys Hernandez) to Atlanta were a) the Tigers needed an upgrade at shortstop (stop laughing), and b) the organization was pitching rich. Also, there were some concerns about Jurrjens durability.

Bottom line: This trade made perfect sense at the time, less sense when Andrew Miller, et al, were shipped to Florida, and no sense when the Tigers find themselves two games under .500 in late August.

It’s too early to say whether Galarraga will be a Jurrjens — or vice versa — but knowing that the former’s likely to be a mainstay on the Tigers staff for the foreseeable future makes watching Jurrjens on TBS a bit more palatable.

Tigers Feeling Buyer's Remorse?

CarSalesman.jpgThe other day I sent an instant message to Ian Casselberry asking if, perchance, the Tigers may be feeling some buyer’s remorse regarding the Miguel Cabrera trade.

I admitted to Ian that it’s way early but that doesn’t mean that panic is not setting in everywhere around Comerica Park — but never at Fungo HQ!

So, I’m lobbing it out there: Are the Tigers wondering what they signed themselves up for over the next seven years?

Maybe.

Fast-forward to this afternoon and the latest installment of Jayson Stark‘s Rumblings and Grumblings on ESPN.com. This time he reviews the off-season trades and the Tigers’ deals are getting anything but passing grades.

6. Braves-Tigers (RHP Jair Jurrjens and OF Gorkys Hernandez for Edgar Renteria): “At this point, Atlanta has won that deal,” said one scout. “Jurrjens [4-2, 2.84] has been their most consistent starter.”

Ouch.

And if you think that’s a harsh assessment, get a load of this:

Continue reading Tigers Feeling Buyer's Remorse?

Three-Year Deal Transforms Robertson into Good-Luck Nate

Count me among the delighted that the Tigers locked-up Nate Robertson for three more years at $21.25 million. I’ve been a fan of Robertson’s since day one and think the Tigers were wise to secure an essential member of the rotation.

(If you want to find someone who isn’t a big Nate fan, look no further than…here.)

Last fall I spoke to Lynn Henning of the Detroit News and asked him what Robertson’s long-term prospects were with the Tigers. (Mind you, this was just after Jair Jurrjens was sent to Atlanta for Edgar Renteria but before the big trade with the Marlins. I thought Robertson could be dangled in an offseason deal.)

My question to Henning: “Is Robertson, Tough Luck Nate I call him, a Tiger next year?”

Lynn Henning: Oh, I think he’s definitely a Tiger for next year because he would rank right now as their number-five starter, and probably if he’s your soft spot in rotation, you can live with that any year.

He is Tough Luck Nate. I think the Tigers are a little concerned that Nate has almost resigned to that being his status and pitches in a manner consistent with being a tough-luck guy. I don’t think that’s necessarily fair to Nate Robertson, but it would sure help if whatever it took he’d win those games instead of losing those tight games. And that just doesn’t seem to be his fate. But I certainly don’t see them trading him at all.

MMc: Well, I’m a fan of his, so I’m glad to hear that.

LH: Yeah, he’s 200 innings, and that’s what counts. He gives you a chance to win every game, and will get you 200 innings. And boy, oh boy, that is a support column for anybody’s starting rotation.

MMc: You think about how many years the Tigers have looked for a durable, dependable, left-handed starter, and they finally got one.

LH: Absolutely, if only because the other guys tend to be a little more impressive in terms of their pitch speeds and repertoires that Nate Robertson is viewed as a weak link. There’d be plenty of rotations where he’d be absolute salt of the earth. But that’s what happens when you get some success, everybody gets a little spoiled.

Amen.

Still don’t believe Robertson is valuable? Let’s talk when Kenny Rogers retires.