Vmart would have been huge. This team desperately needs a 3rd big bat.
Cabrera has been horrible at 3rd base. Peralta was decent defensively, but his lack of range kills us, especially with Cabrera having no range at 3rd. Prince is horrible defensively as well. He had at least two errors in the NY series, and is just flat out sloppy and lazy with his glove.
Again, IMO the Prince signing was horrible. It doesn't matter that we made the playoffs, what we have here is not "team," flat out. It's more a collection of individuals that are misfits defensively and, like I said, their offense doesn't make up for their poor play in the field.
Like I said at the start of the season, our starting pitching is fine, our bullpen is horrible, but we need a more solid lineup. We need more every day players. Young, Bosh, Dirks, and Berry need to be consolidated down to two REAL outfielders that play virtually every day. This platoon crap is garbage. I'd like Dirks to stay, Berry to be a utility player/pinch runner (and he should learn how to bunt and be used to move guys over), Young to leave (we don't need a 1b DH, VMART will be our DH until he proves he can't play anymore), and an every day OF signed that is solid offensively.
New OF, one new relief pitcher, and new closer and we have a decent squad. I still wish we had never signed Prince though. I think this team is much, MUCH more solid with Cabrera at 1st base and a solid glove/bat at 3rd, even if they don't have the power #s that Cabrera has over there. I wonder if Castalonos is ready? That's another thing that has me peeved... We're impeding the development of Castalonos to have Prince suck at 1st... Oh well...
FWIW, Dombrowski said when we traded for Sanchez that he's a #3 starter or better, and we're not going to pay him that kind of cash when we have a #3 starter on our roster. I'm fine with leaving our starting pitching the way it is. Porcello could be upgraded, and he would be better suited on a team like KC. I would be all for trading him if we can get some value for him, but if not the kid is only 23 years old and he's damn good for how old he is. I don't think he's reached his ceiling yet, and if he continues to get better he will be a valuable piece of a great team.
I agree, having Fielder was good for this season but handcuffs building the team going forward. One option could be trading VMart but they desperately need his switch hitting clutch bat in the lineup. He s a professional hitter and despite less power he s a more valuable player than Prince. Anyway with those 3 in the middle the lineup could be fierce but not with holes at many of the other spots. I d pencil Dirks and Jackson into that lineup. They need a good corner outfielder with a bat that isnt a total liability in the field. Needs to hit better than Boesch and Young and field like Dirks but with a better arm. Josh Hamilton will be available but will Ilitch reach into the gold mine again for another $20 mill player? I doubt it but I wouldnt rule it out. Unlike Prince a year ago, there is a need and position for a player like Hamilton. Q Berry will be in camp but I doubt he makes the team unless he learns how to make contact. Him batting 2nd and Dirks 6th vs RHP is the one move by Leyland in the playoffs that I majorly disagree with. Garcia and Castellanos are both being developed for the OF and all indications are that they are bonafide major leaguers but they both need some more time in the minors which makes them both trade bait for a potential SS. Would the Tigers throw those guys plus Porcello and a young bullpen arm to go after someone like Starlin Castro or Elvis Andrus? Otherwise SS might be limited - Peralta back at 6 million but he stopped hitting and isnt a plus defender. Could they go after Stephen Drew or Marco Scutaro as FA and maybe send there trade chips after Justin Upton to man RF? I think its a very real possibilty. In the bullpen, Valverde is a clear goner but Id like them to bring back Dotel. In the search for a closer Soriano will be available and Valverde's voided money might be enough to sign him but I think they might find more value with Jonathon Broxton.
Early offseason projections:
FAs that walk - Delmon Young, Valverde, Raburn, Don Kelly
Re-sign - Gerald Laird (1yr $3 mill) Anibal Sanchez (4 yrs $45 million)
Not offerred contract - Brennan Boesch
Trade: Porcello/N. Castellanos/B. Villareal/Bruce Rondon for Justin Upton - RF
Sign : SS Marco Scutaro (2yr 16 mill), CL Jonathon Broxton (2 yrs $11 million)
Lineup projects as :
CF - Jackson - R
DH - Martinez - S
3B - Cabrera - R
1B - Fielder - L
RF - Upton - R
LF - Dirks - L
SS - Scutaro - R
C - Avila - L
2B - Infante - R
UT - Santiago (S)
OF - Garcia (midseason) (R), Berry (early) - L
C - Laird (R)
UT - Worth (R)
Staff: 1. Verlander SP 2. Fister SP 3. Scherzer SP 4. Sanchez SP 5. Smyly SP-L
Pen: Broxton RHP, Coke LHP, Benoit RHP, Albuquerque RHP, Dotel RHP, Below vs Downs vs Oliver vs Wilk LHP, Marte vs Ortega vs Putkonen - RHP