I JUST DON’T GET IT

By:  Holly Horning

Every once in awhile, I can no longer contain myself when certain Tiger topics come up for discussion. Today, I want to address the comments and actions that just make me shake my head every time they are referenced. Will you join me in this cathartic exercise?

1. Why doesn’t Miggy get the respect or recognition he deserves?

If I have to hear one more time about how he robbed Mike Trout of multiple MVP Awards, I will just scream. How many batting titles did Trout win? Triple Crowns? Batting titles won while playing injured? Division titles, ALDS and World Series appearances? Why don’t many in the media understand the significance of Miggy’s parallel performance to Hank Aaron’s?

2. Are we ever going to hear Dave Dombrowski’s rationale for hiring a manager with no experience for a World Series-bound team?

Other than Al Avila’s “he works well with the youngsters”, we still have no idea why Brad was hired. Dave’s “He blew me away in the interview” will go down as one of the biggest mysteries since Area 51 was revealed.

3. Why does Alan Trammell get no respect?

Tram and Rodney Dangerfield have much in common. The unexplained loss in the ’87 MVP race and 15 years of BBWAA voter ignorance despite stats that place Trammell among the top shortstops in the Hall. Even current Hall of Fame shortstops on record saying he was the best. A nice guy and beloved by many, so what’s the deal?

4. Why did it take the Tigers decades to decide they needed a “Tigers’ Way” manual?

The idea of defining the way a team trains, plays and thinks is nothing new. The first manuals hit over 60 years ago. Teams who consistently perform well all have them.

5. Why are the Tigers so generous with payroll but go cheap on everything else?

For years, having one of the largest payrolls in MLB but ignoring computer programs, other technology, Front Office trends, training, branding and analytics for decades. It’s akin to buying a Venom GT and slapping mini-van wheels on it. You won’t find and develop the best players if you don’t have the best tools and the advantages that go with them.

6. Why do fans always want to trade Ian Kinsler?

This player has done everything the team and fans have asked of him with the glove and the bat. So why are fans insistent upon trading him and losing the offense, strength up the middle and leadership? And then there’s that minor issue of not having anyone capable of replacing him. What’s a guy gotta do to get loved?

7. Why didn’t Mr. I didn’t fire Dave sooner?

The end of 2012 found the Tigers with decreasing attendance, fewer wins and a sweep in the World Series despite a massive payroll and historic individual player goals and awards. After 10 years on the job and 2 poor World Series performances, why did Mr. I retain Dave for another 3 years? Is there any profession which allows someone to stay if they haven’t met their goal in a decade?

8. Why do the Tigers not seem to care about their best and fan-favorite former players?

As one of the 4 oldest teams in baseball, the Tigers have the fewest retired numbers outside of the newest expansion teams. (Actually, some of the newest teams have more.) No parties, no farewell tours, no Tiger Hall of Fame. What does a guy have to do to get honored by the team?

9. Who was in charge of coordinating the design of Comerica Park?

The Tigers have always been about big bats and lumbering “speed” so logically a ballpark conducive to “small ball” was developed. The cavernous outfield remains problematic with few outfielders being able to successfully navigate it. Shouldn’t owner and architect have had a long talk before the sketches were dry?

10. Why is Omar Vizquel one of the fans’ favorite coaches?

The man is like Teflon. But consider this is the guy who’s been in charge of base running for the past 2 years. He’s also the same coach who told Dave Dombrowski to sign Alex Gonzalez to replace Iggy in 2014.

Well, I feel better. How about you? Are there other stories out there that are totally unexplainable? Want to get them off your chest? Care to share?

7 thoughts on “I JUST DON’T GET IT

  1. I think I understand the original idea behind the stadium Randy Smith wanted a pitchers park but after all the player additions I wonder why they have not decided to bring the fences in again. I believe they did it once already

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    • If not mistaking that was at the Juan Gonzales time. Miggy and JD have asked often to do the same but the organization seems deaf at the request. Why not make happy the best hitter on the planet? The guy who will really take you to the promise land, the guy who is a team changer, something Trout doesn’t seem to be yet.

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  2. I don’t get it either. Mike Trout wins an MVP and he lands an endorsement deal and commercial with Subway. Miguel wins a Triple Crown and all he can get is a non-speaking role in a Chevy commercial gazing up at the sky. Maybe it’s because Mike has that “all American” image and speaks clear English. This has to be the reason why Miguel doesn’t get endorsements

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  3. Thanks so much Holly. This was cathartic reading! Re Frank’s comment about moving in the fences (item #9). I don’t know for certain, but I believe that there is a protocol required by MLB for stadium field restructuring. Is there anyone out there that can let me know the steps (& time required) that would need to be taken to change our outfield dimensions?

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  4. Great list, Holly! The only issue that I would add is the Medical Department/Training Staff. I’ve never seen more injuries, or players trying to “fight thru” injuries in my years of following baseball. Where is the accountability here? I think it speaks to the Tigers organizational mindset – and is something that needs to be changed. All the best!

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  5. Sure hit the nail on the head about the Trout/Miggy thing…as far as I’m concerned, there’s no comparison between the two. Trout is a favorite of the “stat geeks”, that’s all.

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