The light is in the tunnel’s end. Following the $69 million to Cabrera, Zimmermann, Fielder, and Verlander, Detroit has few financial commitments. After posting a payroll in excess of $207 million in 2017, the Tigers dropped all the way to $135 million in 2018 and will probably end up somewhere about $125 million in 2019. The only guaranteed money following the 2020 season is to Cabrera. That contract is dreadful, but the Tigers will have far more flexibility.
One of the biggest problems for the Tigers heading into 2019 is that they don’t have a roster which embodies the current state of Major League Baseball. Comerica Park is a factor, but the Tigers were 28th in home runs last year, trailing only the Giants and Marlins, that are made to have a pitcher bat at least twice a game.
The Orioles Rangers listed fewer strikeouts. As far as K/9 goes, the Tigers were the A’s and 26th, before these groups. The game relies on hitting hitting tickets and dingers. The Tigers were at both of those things among the worst in baseball.
That’s only one of many reasons why this rebuild is moving at a snail’s speed. The Tigers are attempting to use the Comerica Park variables to their advantage, by relying upon some pitch-to-contact types that induce a great deal of fly balls, but that only goes so far. The Tigers were 26-55 on the road, although 38-43 in the home.
All that said, you’ll find a couple of silver linings. The Tigers were 43-45 against teams that are dropping that are fellow. It had been the teams that were .500 or even better that wrecked Detroit last year, since the Tigers were only 21-53 against those groups.
As the Tigers are improved around by the branch, could they be the team that picks up any extra losses? Will the return of Miguel Cabrera and also the addition of a starting pitching depth that is better help the Tigers exceed expectations? Let’s try to answer those questions that are burning.
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