By: Kurt Snyder & Holly Horning
Take 1 hot-button topic. Add 2 bloggers and 5 questions to make……Rapid Fire. The challenge is for our two bloggers to state their opinions in just 2 sentences. Let’s get to it!
Opening Day is tomorrow! In anticipation of it, Kurt and Holly are offering their views on what they are looking forward to seeing during this shortened season.
What clue will tell you the most about how seriously the Tigers see this shortened season?
I believe the overall demeanor in the dugout can tell you a lot about how serious this team is taking the season. But more than anything, how hard they work on the field will be very telling and if they work hard, that’s all we can ask for during a season that has been labeled as having no meaning whatsoever.
With only 24 hours to go before their first game, the Tigers still haven’t figured out who will be on their 5-man rotation, so I’d like to see how seriously they intend to solve this problem. Will they move to yet another year of duct-taping – combining 2 or more pitchers for 1 game – or will they seek out a single legitimate starting pitcher?
What one new change for the year will you enjoy seeing?
I don’t know if the word ‘enjoy’ is what I would use to describe this change, but I will be intrigued by how teams will adjust to the new 3-batter rule for relievers. As I have said many times before, this is not a changed that eliminates strategy, it changes strategy, which should prove to impact the game, hopefully in a good way.
Having watched a couple televised games already, I’m really enjoying the quiet that comes without the walk-up music and crowd noise. I find that the peace allows one to fully focus on the game and the details that are missed when noise often proves to be a distraction.
Piped in crowd noise or not?
MLB teams need to give up on any attempt to try to make this season normal, when it is, in so many ways, far from it. Piping in crowd noise reminds me of attending a concert, hearing a piano playing, but there is no piano player on the stage, much less a piano!
No, no, no to noise which is too artificial and an insult to fans by telling them how excited they should feel at any given moment. I am thoroughly enjoying listening (and learning) to players bantering and even Miggy who was laughing as he ran the bases the other day.
What one goal do you want to see the Tigers reach this season?
During another season of rebuilding, the one goal that dominates all of them is the development of players for the future. This season offers young prospects opportunities they may not normally get in the big leagues and one way or another, we need see them start moving the needle.
I need to see at least 1, maybe 2, of the promised rookies we’ve been hearing about forever come up and play more than a couple games. Whether with the taxi squad or being called up at a time when the service clock issue is moot, we need to see some proof that there is real, not hyped, potential with some of these prospects.
What will make you happiest to see this season?
Well, I will treat this question as a subset of the last one, where the goal of seeing the young players develop will make me the happiest. This season especially, is not the time to be concerned about wins and losses; what would be pleasing is to see the rebuild take a step forward by seeing the young guys validate some of the good things that have been said about them.
This is a dress rehearsal for the future so the Tigers should treat it as such. Take some chances, make some bold(er) moves, bring up as many prospects as possible to give them a taste (or more) and see exactly how close – or how far away – this team may be from being competitive.
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