Tuesday, November 23, 2010

On the Victor Martinez signing and the Tigers

Obviously, the Tigers are a better club today than before agreeing to terms with DH/catcher Victor Martinez on a four-year, $50 million contract.
Martinez bring a lot to the table. You can expect him to hit about .300. He does make consistent contact. He isn't one of those whiff kings. He isn't a very good catcher defensively, but good enough to backup while serving as the primary DH.
What he isn't is a great power hitter. He'll hit 20 home runs. Although that would have put him second on the Tigers last season, it's still not "great" power.
I do like that he is a switch hitter. Last season, he was far more effective as a right-handed hitter, but it appears to be an aberration. His career numbers are about equal from both sides of the plate.
I do like the way the Tigers are setting up. Their starting rotation - with Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer, Rick Porcello and Phil Coke - should be the best in the division and one of the best in American League. There are a lot of elements to their bullpen. The corner outfield spots are a concern, but there is plenty of time to get that in order. Second base could be a problem, but at least there are three options with young players - Buster Rhymes, Scott Sizemore and Danny Worth (I think Worth has the best upside).
I do think the Tigers would be wise to add catching depth. General manager Dave Dombrowski was impressed by Alex Avila late last season, and has said he thinks he can catch five days per week in the coming season. I don't have the same evaluation of Avila, who I thought struggled last season.
But I don't see options from the Tigers minor league system for catchers, either.



Blogger Barry said...

Pat, that is super if V-mart plays 4 or 5 games a week as a DH. I like AA because he can catch and I think he will hit better next year. Guillen 13 million on the books next year could be the end to the shopping season for the Tigers. I think committee of Boesch, Wells, Thomas or Kelly can handle RF. They all can play half decent right. If Boesch learns the strike zone he will be great hitter. Boesch can hit, but can only hit strikes no good at hitting balls. Losing your 1st round pick with no supplement picks you might as sign another Type A player and completely blow up the draft. This should put the Tigers in front to sign SDowns. They will only lose 2nd round pick.

2:10 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I much preferred Martinez over Dunn. He gives them, as you say, good flexibility. I think that Boesch and Wells has to play, because the Tigers have to integrate younger players onto this roster. I do NOT favor bringing back Ordonez, he is not a bad guy but the Tigers need to play these younger guys to see what they can do, if they can't play then move on. Bringing back Inge was bad enough. Let the new guys have a shot, youngsters at catcher, 2nd base and the outfield sets them up for the future.


6:06 PM 
Anonymous Michael C said...

I liked Dunn a lot better as a DH. But honestly I think only Dunn, Crawford, and Werth would've clearly been better signings than Martinez, so I can't complain. And Martinez does provide a lot of offense for a catcher, when he does catch.

Now we need to go get an outfielder for the #2 or #3 hole. Preferably one that can hit and field.

10:21 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can't count on Boesch or Wells or the others, so gotta bring back Ordonez, imo.

Some holes are being plugged. Nice.

Goodness, if Seay and Zumaya make it back effectively, the Tigers might be quite good even as of now.

5:25 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This move only works if you bring back Ordonez. Otherwise it's a push.

10:27 AM 
Anonymous Todd said...

It's Will Rhymes, not Buster Rhymes but I do wish it was Buster

2:29 PM 
Blogger Fred Brill said...

Happy Thanksgiving Pat, this is one holiday I miss. It just ain't the same on our side of the river on an October Sunday.

I am very happy about the Martinez deal - but like you I find this idea of Avila catching the majority a little overly optimistic.

I do think Ordonez still has value in right - last year proved that clearly before he was injured - and it's clear the Tigers tanked as soon as Ordonez was out of action.

There's at least one more deal coming ...

6:56 PM 

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