20 JULY THOUGHTS

By:  Kurt Snyder

Consider my 20 Thoughts for July as passionate opinions, random subjects and statements of defense in support of our dynamic shortstop. A nice little twist I think.


1. With the Tigers slowly but surely challenging the Indians in the division, I want no part of any disruption to a formidable middle infield combination that defensively is among the best in baseball.

2. Oh the benefits of writing late at night … another big Tiger victory Saturday night. The heroes? The team … a great team win.

3. I have to admit, I wanted no part of Tyler Collins continuing his career in Detroit after his “flip the fans” display earlier in the year. But the big hits he has delivered during this latest tour of duty have not only been surprising but a testament to his mettle.

4. Thank goodness the Tigers didn’t do anything silly with their catching position. What, you’re going to give James McCann one year as your starter?

5. The “acquisitions” of Jordan Zimmermann, Daniel Norris and J.D. Martinez may turn out to be the best haul brought on board by any team in baseball at or shortly after the deadline.

6. Don’t you feel horrible how the Royals have hit the skids this season? Yeah, me neither.

7. The list of spark plugs on this team is getting longer. Maybin has led the list all season and did his impression of Lorenzo Cain on Saturday night. His intangibles continue to feed this team.

8. Oh, you wanna know the others on the list? Well, you know one is Kinsler, and Iggy is now emerging as another important one.

9. The Tigers most important starter? Anibal Sanchez. I guess we are going to have to find another way.

10. More than batting average and home runs and RBI’s, Miggy’s most important stat to date is games played. 102.

11. More than batting average and home runs and RBI’s, VMart’s most important stat to date is games played. 100.

12. Justin Verlander. Who envisioned he could get better? Dominant and overpowering are now back in the JV vocabulary. JV Days are back. (Yeah, I am a little jacked about the Saturday victory.)

13. I am going to beat this to death until something is done. The Tigers better finally align their rotation properly in preparation for the Zimmermann return. Just once this year, I would like to see the Tigers top 3 starters pitch consecutively.

14. The last thing we thought in spring training was that Bruce Rondon would begin to contribute again for the Tigers … in the late innings … in July … during a pennant race. He’s been good, but my enthusiasm will remain guarded.

15. Overreacting fans felt Iggy should be traded after the dust-up with James McCann last season. But there has been a change in Iglesias. He’s turned a negative into a positive and has reached a much higher level of maturity. Playing hard. Running hard. High intensity. It’s all you can ask really. His talent takes care of the rest.

16. Having Mark Lowe fall on his face this season the way he has could have been debilitating for the pen if not for Shane Greene. The pen is developing some real depth. And Greene has led the way.

17. Speaking of bullpen depth? What other names come to mind? Alex Wilson? Definitely! Alex has teamed with Bruce Rondon in that important 6th inning role.

18. Michael Fulmer is the next Justin Verlander. He is the next Tiger ace. When do you think that will be? Hopefully not for a little while yet.

19. I believe Tiger fans have gotten used to and are taking for granted how important Iggy’s magical defense is to this team. How did that happen so soon?

20. The Tigers began July knowing they had a brutal schedule ahead. They will emerge closer to first than they were when they started the month. Not expected. But it’s reality. The approach to stand pat now is a good one. The trade deadline noise in Detroit may make crickets sound loud.

9 thoughts on “20 JULY THOUGHTS

  1. #2: could this game be as defining as the Minnesota game last year? #5: how can bringing back JD be better than his replacements have been? This isn’t a knock on JD, but a testament to his replacements! #9: I had totally forgotten about Sanchez… #15: Where does keeping Iggy leave Dixon Machado?

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  2. #1: Could not agree more! #3: Vindicated. #5: About those “acquisitions”? Such a stellar concept! #9: He is. Inexplicable. #13: Yes, yes, & YES! Also inexplicable. #14: Cautiously optimistic. You know what? All 20 thoughts are great 🙂

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  3. Fare well-ther Royals fans. Love seeing JV evolve and re-summit like this. One of the more satisfying parts of this season thus far.

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  4. I happened to be in KC during the Series last fall. I liked the city and the people very much, and I love how that team approaches the game, at least when Yordan isn’t pitching. Count me out on the Royals schadenfreude.

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    • I share your respect for the Royals–except for the headhunting if Ventura and Herrera. For a low-budget team, it is amazing how much money they spend on signing solid, unflashy players to strengthen their weak links: Infante, Rios, Guthrie, Vargas, etc. There is a lesson in that.

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  5. 13. …The Tigers better finally align their rotation properly in preparation for the Zimmermann return. Just once this year, I would like to see the Tigers top 3 starters pitch consecutively. Yup, other than the post-season that is great for your BP. NOT!!

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  6. Does anyone have a critique on Ausmus’ job performance of late? Are we seeing improvement? From listening to his radio interviews of late he seems a lot more relaxed and confident. That may mean more than a lot of outsider analysis. He may be growing into the job. Stand pat? The Tigers have that 4th year option on him. 😁

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    • John – Given the Tigers are playing their best baseball of the season, if you believe in the team concept, then the manager must be managing his best as well. But given how streaky the team has been, just sit back and ride the wave. I believe this team will go as far as Brad takes them. When the team has struggled, he has contributed to the poor performance. Thanks for the comment. Kurt

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