By: Holly Horning & Kurt Snyder
The All Star break is upon us and for Tiger fans, after the mind numbing stay in the Twin Cities, we all deserve a break.
But there is no rest for the weary when it comes to Totally Tigers as we will continue to deliver every day. The All Star break gives us a chance to do something different, but it will always come down to questions.
So this week, please enjoy this 3 part series as we explore what awaits us as we continue to follow the Tigers through this very puzzling 2015 season.
We will address 3 important topics by answering 5 questions pertaining to each topic. But we have made things tough on ourselves, limiting the answers to 2 sentences, forcing us to cut to the chase.
Part 1: BUYING AND SELLING
1. Will Dave be making a move sooner or later this month?
Holly – A lot can happen with team performance and Miggy’s recovery so he’ll wait as long as he can before pulling the trigger. Waiting until the last-minute will be more telling about where this team is headed which will determine who leaves and who comes in.
Kurt – Dombrowski has stated how critical the first 10-12 games after the break will be in determining the future plans of the team. And I think those games will be very telling, so Dave will definitely gauge the team for a couple of weeks first before pulling the trigger on anything.
2. If Dave makes the right trades, will they resolve the Tigers’ problems?
Holly – Unfortunately, no, because the managing is negating performance. Even if the Tigers somehow corner the market on pitching, there needs to be someone manning the leadership helm who can address team cohesiveness and inspire maximum performance.
Kurt – I think I have made it pretty clear about the impact our manager is having on the team. The Tigers may just be beating their heads against the wall if they try to make moves for a big stretch run led by a weak manager.
3. Is there anyone likely to be traded who is already on the 25-man roster and not a FA? If so, who?
Holly – No, although a case could be made for Castellanos and Kinsler. However, there are no adequate replacements for them at the moment, so they will stay.
Kurt – Likely? No, but it certainly is possible that Castellanos may be required to get a high-end starting pitcher that a couple minor leaguers won’t draw.
4. If you could trade anyone, who would it be, why and who would replace him?
Holly – Alex Avila, not just because he is a free agent at the end of the year, but because there is solid depth at catcher and not at any other position. Trade him and recall Bryan Holaday.
Kurt – There is no question that James McCann had been developing before our eyes as he carried the majority of the load behind the plate while Avila was on the DL. The Tigers are ready to make the transition and move Alex Avila, with Bryan Holaday moving into the backup catcher spot.
5. How many new players would the Tigers need to acquire to fill the major holes? What positions?
Holly – If you exclude the manager position, it’s all about pitching, pitching, pitching. They need 2 solid starting pitchers and if you move Simon to the bullpen, at least one other reliever.
Kurt – The Tigers, if they indeed are going to go for it, need another big splash #1 starting pitcher as well as another reliever who can impact their bullpen immediately. And don’t discount the possibility that another reliever could be a closer.