By: Kurt Snyder
Consider my 20 Thoughts for August as opportunities for readers to answer some questions. And there is a whole boat load of them below. So let me hear from you. (I even highlighted them for you – so you’re welcome!)
1. With the success of the 3 rookies in the rotation, Mike Pelfrey lingers on the disabled list, and no one seems to care. Can you say addition by subtraction?
2. Cameron Maybin and his thumb were big issues this week. One reader thought given his injury history and overall inability to stay in the lineup, the Tigers should part ways with him after this season. I am slowly heading in that direction.
3. It would be interesting to know the overall record of the Tiger starters since Pelfrey hit the DL. The Tigers didn’t have to scramble to replace him; they gladly did it.
4. Salty is the most dangerous .189 hitter in the major leagues. Is that safe to say?
5. As we head into September, could you be expecting too much if you foresee any meaningful contributions from Jordan Zimmermann and Nick Castellanos?
6. The timing of the promotion of JaCoby Jones says a lot about the confidence the Tigers have in the availability of Castellanos and Maybin should they make the playoffs. Doing it in August versus September makes him eligible for the playoffs.
7. Speaking of Jones, I am sure his parents were thrilled to death to have to suffer through an interview while their son batted during his first game in the majors. Are you kidding me, FSD?
8. The Tigers hinting at a platoon between Iggy and Aybar makes me wonder about Iglesias’ future with the Tigers next season.
9. The Tigers most important starter? Anibal Sanchez. Until Zimmermann finds his way back on the field, who else is more important?
10. How soon do the Tigers start looking at the calendar to make sure Verlander is the starter in a potential Wild Card game?
11. I wondered when it would happen. But I am officially worried about Miggy’s ankle again. He will someday transition from a first baseman to a DH. It will prolong his career. Is next year too soon?
12. Justin Verlander. We are back to looking forward to watching him pitch. We are back to expecting brilliance. Who expected to be back here … ever?
13. Michael Fulmer’s next start is an important one. But he has shaved his beard like it’s the end of the season. Bad omen?
14. Brad Ausmus. Candidate for American League Manager of the Year? Oh, heck no! But is he an improved manager? A heavily guarded, afraid to say it loud enough for people to hear, yes.
15. On the heels of that little nugget, do the Tigers have a team that could make a playoff run? Yes. Are they a team that can make a playoff run with Brad Ausmus as manager? No.
16. After K Rod, who is the Tigers’ next most reliable reliever? Doubt it if you like, but I think it’s Kyle Ryan. Right now. Not a month ago, but right now. (Yeah, I know Alex Wilson deserves votes as well).
17. The Tigers have stated they will only recall players from the minor leagues who they think can help them when the rosters expand. Do you think they would dig deep for Anthony Gose?
18. David Price, Yoenis Cespedes and Joakim Soria really made the Tigers better. Maybe even more now that they are gone.
19. This season has served as an important baby step for Bruce Rondon. Still young and still talented, he needs to now add a mean streak. Despite the big fastball, there still needs to be much more fire behind it.
20. Come from behind victories are good signs for contending teams. It’s one important variable shared by teams you see in the playoffs year after year. They seem to find a way when they are down.