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.

SI's Hall of Fame Primary

If you believe the voters in Sports Illustrated’s online mock voting, today we find out that Travis Fryman‘s Hall of Fame candidacy comes to a quick and painless end. (He’s not alone; get a load of Brady Anderson, Shawon Dunston and Todd Stottlemyre‘s, ahem, support.)

JackMorrisHoF.jpg

There are, of course, two former Tigers on the ballot that have a legitimate shot at the Hall of Fame: Jack Morris and Alan Trammell.

The debate over whether these two Tigers are of Hall of Fame stock continues to rage on across the Internet. Well, rage might be a skosh too strong. Simmer is more like it.

This morning the Detroit News‘s Lynn Henning revealed that Trammell reappears on his ballot in 2008. But what about the peeps? What do they have to say about who’s in, who’s out for this year and who’s out for good.

AlanTrammellHoF.jpg

You can check out the current results here (the ballot is open as of this writing), but in the meantime take a look at how Morris and Trammell fare in the mock voting.

Bottom Line: 85 percent of the voters think Morris is a Hall of Famer, and 58 percent think the same of Tram.

By most accounts, neither Tram nor Morris will be voted in this time around. (Nor will anyone else for that matter.) In time, though, Tigers fans can expect to see at least one of them enshrined.

The only remaining questions are: Who goes first, and is he elected by the writers or the Veterans Committee?

The Detroit Tigers Podcast #36: Talking Tigers with Lynn Henning, Part II

download The Detroit Tigers Podcast Welcome to The Detroit Tigers Podcast, the podcast for Tigers fans, by Tigers fans. This is Episode #36, a 31-minute podcast about the Detroit Tigers recorded live from St. Simons Island, Georgia and Scottsdale, Arizona.In this episode we continue from Episode #35 our discussion with Lynn Henning from The Detroit News.In addition to covering the Tigers and other pro and college sports, Lynn is the author of several popular sports books including:

Download the audio file or grab the RSS feed here.Comments? Leave a message on the listener line, (480) 383-6350, or leave a comment here!Talk to you next time…on The Detroit Tigers Podcast.Also, be sure to check out The Daily Fungo, my Tigers blog, for more conversations about the team. To stay current with the blog, use this RSS feed.The Detroit Tigers Podcast is not affiliated in any way with the Detroit Tigers Baseball Club or Major League Baseball.

The Detroit Tigers Podcast #35: Talking Tigers with Lynn Henning, Part I

download The Detroit Tigers Podcast Welcome to The Detroit Tigers Podcast, the podcast for Tigers fans, by Tigers fans. This is Episode #35, a 27-minute podcast about the Detroit Tigers recorded live from St. Simons Island, Georgia and Scottsdale, Arizona U.S.A.In this episode we talk with Lynn Henning from The Detroit News. We spoke to Lynn last week as he enjoyed some R&R.In addition to covering the Tigers and other pro and college sports, Lynn is the author of several popular sports books including:

Download the audio file or grab the RSS feed here. Once I have the first episode posted I’ll publish it to iTunes and the other popular and unpopular podcast directories.Comments? Leave a message on the listener line, (480) 383-6350, or leave a comment here!Talk to you next time…on The Detroit Tigers Podcast.Also, be sure to check out The Daily Fungo, my Tigers blog, for more conversations about the team. To stay current with the blog, use this RSS feed.The Detroit Tigers Podcast is not affiliated in any way with the Detroit Tigers Baseball Club or Major League Baseball.

The Detroit Tigers Podcast #17: Wake Me Up Before You No-No

download The Detroit Tigers Podcast Welcome to The Detroit Tigers Podcast, the podcast for Tigers fans, by Tigers fans. This is Episode #17, a 25-minute podcast about the American League Champion Detroit Tigers recorded live from Scottsdale, Arizona U.S.A.—> Take our podcast survey!—> Listen to the podcast on the show Web site: www.TigersPodcast.com.In this episode we talk about Justin Verlander’s no-hitter with:

  • Mario Impemba of FSN Detroit who called the game on TV
  • Josh Wallen of The Daily Fungo, and The Podaholics Podcast who was in attendance at Comerica Park
  • Lynn Henning of The Detroit News who covered the game.

We also listen to comments from Steve and John in St. Clair Shores, Mich.—> Download the audio file or grab the RSS feed here.Improve our iTunes Ranking: If you like the podcast, please leave a comment on our iTunes page!Comments? Leave a message on the listener line, (480) 383-6350, or leave a comment here!Talk to you next time…on The Detroit Tigers Podcast.Support the Podcast!Consider a donation of $1 a month to help offset hosting costs for the show and provide your host with a nice cup of coffee once in a while.Also, be sure to check out The Daily Fungo, my Tigers blog, for more conversations about the team. To stay current with the blog, use this RSS feed.The Detroit Tigers Podcast is not affiliated in any way with the Detroit Tigers Baseball Club or Major League Baseball.

The Non-Sequiturs return!

This morning I’m engaged in the highest form of multi-tasking: waiting for a conference call to begin, watching Jeremy Bonderman ease into and out of his standard first-inning high-wire act, and writing this post. Impressed? Thought not.Nevertheless, back from a long siesta here are the Non-Sequiturs:I called it. Sorta. During the pre-season podcast roundtable – the one that never “aired” due to technical issues – I asked my esteemed panel of guests to name their respective Tigers player to watch during 2007. My choice? Magglio Ordonez. I just had a gut feeling that he was poised to build off of his ALCS vibes. Has he ever. I think it’s safe to assume Ordonez will be an All Star this year whether or not he’s voted in or not. I’ll see if I can scare-up that sound bite…The Casey HR Watch. So here we are at Memorial Day weekend, an unofficial milestone in the major league baseball season, and Tigers’ first baseman Sean Casey has yet to go yard. Methinks we should start a pool for when he’ll first reach the seats. Anyone interested? Winner gets a Fungo T-shirt, a podcast T-shirt and another goodie from the Fungo bookshelf. To get things started, I say he goes yard on June 1 at Cleveland. My second guess, in case you’re wondering, Sept. 12 against Texas.Curious glove work. I just saw that Meijer is giving away Gary Sheffield gloves at Comerica Park one game this weekend. Why give away the glove of the full-time DH?Speaking of Sheff… Ernie Harwell, doing the TV call with Mario Impemba today, said that he read Sheffield’s autobiography and thinks it’s one of the best player-“written” books he’s ever read.Tigers punchless at first. We mentioned Casey’s power woes earlier. You have to believe that Dave Dombrowski has noticed the production the Tigers’ division rivals get from first base:

  • Tigers: Casey – .255 avg., 0 HR, 10 RBI, .312 OBP, .319 SLG
  • Indians: Ryan Garko – .325 avg., 6 HR, 15 RBI, .377 OBP, .516 SLG
  • Twins: Justin Morneau – .282 avg., 14 HR, 33 RBI, .358 OBP, .576 SLG
  • White Sox: Paul Konerko – .213 avg., 6 HR, 21 RBI, .308 OBP, .369 SLG
  • Royals: A platoonish arrangement of Ross Gload and Ryan Shealy (combined stats) – .254 avg., 4 HR, 28 RBI, .298 OBP, .394 SLG

Lynn Henning thinks the Tigers will target a first baseman at the trade deadline. They have to, don’t they?Feliz cumpleaños, Jose. Surely you sent warm birthday wishes to Jose Mesa on Wednesday, right? Hello? One thing’s for sure, he didn’t pitch any better at 41 than he did in the waning days of 40. Here’s the skinny on his last five outings: 12.46 ERA (4.1 IP/6 ER), 7 H, 3 BB, 2 SO. Stellar!By the by… Here’s the line for Jason Grilli over his last five appearances: 7.45 ERA (9.2 IP / 8 ER), 16 H, BB, 8 SO.That’s enough from me.What do you think?

The Detroit Tigers Podcast #3: Baseball Insider & Detroit News Baseball Writer Lynn Henning

download The Detroit Tigers Podcast Welcome to The Detroit Tigers Podcast, the podcast for Tigers fans, by Tigers fans. This is Episode #3, a 1 hour, 3-minute podcast about the American League Champion Detroit Tigers recorded live from St. Simons Island, Georgia and Scottsdale, Arizona U.S.A.In this episode we talk with Lynn Henning from The Detroit News. We spoke to Lynn a few days before he arrived in Lakeland to cover Spring Training 2007.In addition to covering the Tigers and other pro and college sports, Lynn is the author of several popular sports books including:

Download the audio file or grab the RSS feed here. Once I have the first episode posted I’ll publish it to iTunes and the other popular and unpopular podcast directories.Comments? Leave a message on the listener line, (480) 383-6350, or leave a comment here!Talk to you next time…on The Detroit Tigers Podcast.Also, be sure to check out The Daily Fungo, my Tigers blog, for more conversations about the team. To stay current with the blog, use this RSS feed.The Detroit Tigers Podcast is not affiliated in any way with the Detroit Tigers Baseball Club or Major League Baseball.