By: Kurt Snyder & Holly Horning
Saturday’s segment is a day to touch on as many issues as possible. As the World Series gets into full swing, there is still plenty to contemplate about the game and the home team.
Kurt and Holly don’t share and it’s only for the readers’ benefit. It almost always translates into a wide array of thoughts.
Only in baseball must a team like the Tigers, have to sit one of their best hitters because they finish a tight Wild Card race on the road in a National League city. Only in baseball is a 103-game winner forced to start the World Series on the road based on the results of an All-Star game. Only in baseball can a great Series story like Kyle Schwarber’s be interrupted because there is no DH in the National League city; there’s certainly more to talk about at the Winter Meetings than just trades, isn’t there?
How does Al Avila strike a balance between major changes to a team loaded with popular players while still preserving fan interest? Fans in Detroit are not used to giving up players they have grown to love for players they know nothing about. Are the Tigers willing to face the certain reality of more empty seats in order to get their balance sheet healthier in the future?
When you watch the World Series as a fan of a team who didn’t qualify for the playoffs, you begin to understand why your team is not participating in the first place. The Tigers certainly proved all season they could not compete with the Indians; and the Cubs would have been no different. Sometimes you don’t find out until you watch the playoffs that your team really did not belong among the best of the best.
It may be because we were used to Dave Dombrowski being notoriously tight-lipped, but am I the only one who thinks that Al Avila shares too much information with the public? His interviews just seem to give away too much information, strategy and thoughts on players that maybe should be kept on the QT. Unless this is his way of prepping fans in advance of some big changes in order to help minimize fan and social media backlash.
It appears Dave Dombrowski doesn’t like to share. Less than one year after hiring Mike Hazen to be his GM, and then not allowing him to make trades, Hazen has left the Red Sox for the brighter horizons of……the Arizona Diamondbacks as their GM, going from a payroll ranked #3 to one listed at #26. DD has opted not to hire a GM for the Red Sox, making them the first team to not have that official position.
News continues to leak from other media sources about why Doug Fister was deemed expendable when Dave Dombrowski was forced to make a payroll cutback and it resembles more of a soap opera than anything else. Excluding the desire to get Drew Smyly into the rotation, Fister was dealt because of concern over an alleged personal relationship with the daughter of a Tigers’ coach and his vocal unhappiness over the role another pitcher had in a popular and well-respected employee being unfairly demoted due to the latter’s messy love life. If you add in the rumors about why Prince Fielder and Avisail Garcia were traded, it appears that dysfunctional personal relationships were a significant distraction among the Tigers in 2013.