Robbie Grossman Lives on First Base

Does anyone remember the big to-do about the book Moneyball? It’s a fascinating recounting of how former Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane took advantage of Major League Baseball’s notions about player skillsets to assemble his roster: Beane grabbed guys who would supplement their decent-to-solid tools with an uncanny ability to get on base. It revolutionized the way modern baseball talent is judged, and for a while, teams couldn’t help but copy this blueprint for talent accumulation.

Well, don’t look now but there’s a true-blue Moneyball player taking his bases in Minnesota almost completely unnoticed.  Continue reading “Robbie Grossman Lives on First Base”

Mike Ilitch, the Ultimate Fan

There were a lot of celebrity deaths that occurred in 2016, a lot of them that really made you stop and compose yourself: Prince, David Bowie, Gordie Howe, Alan Rickman, and Harper Lee just to name a few. Yet learning today of Mike Ilitch’s passing stopped me dead in my tracks, and I felt a pang of grief that’s usually reserved for family members. Continue reading “Mike Ilitch, the Ultimate Fan”

Trade Deadline Fun w/Drew Sharp

I’ve never been the biggest Drew Sharp fan (a primarily skeptical writer for the Detroit Free Press), and in recent years I’d say I’ve become ambivalent to his Glass-Half-Empty style of journalism. Just bland enough to ignore, I guess; no hot takes. Good for him!

But today, while obsessing over the trade deadline, Tiger fans watched as Al Avila sat on tradeable commodities, and seemed to make no effort to upgrade the parts of the team that could have used an affordable (re: easily acquired) level up. And then Mr. Sharp wrote an article that can be summed up in six words: Avila did nothing, and that’s okay.

Let’s break this article down, shall we? Retorts from yours truly in bold: Continue reading “Trade Deadline Fun w/Drew Sharp”

If Al Avila Doesn’t Trade K-Rod He’s a Certified Lunatic

As of today, July 31st, los Tigres just swept their second straight series against two of the American League’s most competitive teams: the Boston Red Sox and the Houston Astros. The offense looked absolutely dynamic, clobbering dongs at a staggering rate. The starters looked great, as everyone from the resurgent Justin Verlander to the new-and-improved Matt Boyd tossed several strong innings each. Even the bullpen has looked pretty good, especially in situations where it would normally poop its pants.

And due to this win streak — which, again, is impressive — a lot of fans are talking themselves into postseason success for this club, even though a month ago there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth. “Buy, buy!” they cry, hoping to further dilute a farm system that had been moderately replenished last year due to savvy trade deadline transactions.

To a degree, I’m okay if the Tigers acquire a 3rd, 4th, or 5th starter – IF the price is right (hopefully a Jake Odorizzi or Matt Shoemaker don’t bankrupt the minors). Otherwise, I’m still in Camp Sell, especially when it comes to the impending Unrestricted Free Agents, including-and-most-specifically the Tigers’ dominant closer, Francisco “K-Rod” Rodriguez. Continue reading “If Al Avila Doesn’t Trade K-Rod He’s a Certified Lunatic”