illustration by Samara Pearlstein
Happy last night of Chanukah from Hank Greenberg and Roar of the Tigers! On to the pug marks.
pug mark 1
Lee has a really nice post up comparing Miguel Cabrera and Brandon Inge. If you want to argue about their relative merits and demerits, I would suggest you read that post. In fact, I think it should be required reading. The general idea is that, yes, Cabrera is an upgrade over Inge, we all agree on this because it would be completely bonkers not to, but when you factor in both offense AND defense, the difference is not so large as you might think.
Brandon Inge fans will note that something they knew intuitively all along is indeed borne out by the numbers. Satisfying!
pug mark 2
The Tigers just re-signed Timo Perez to a one year contract, and Matt says “ew”. I tend to agree. Why bother? Our big league outfield is our most comprehensively covered area right now, with the Granderson/Magglio combo in there for sure, Jacque Jones splitting time with someone (Raburn? Thames? Inge??), Clevlen a possibility, Freddy Guzman a not-very-exciting possibility… we really need Timo in there? Whatever, I can’t even get that worked up about this yet.
pug mark 3
According to the Free Press, the Tigers have been talking to the Pirates about Inge. I expect them to talk to every single team about Inge at some point, just for the heck of it, but I will note that both the Pirates’ big league catchers are 26 years old and not as completely terrible with a bat as some. Not that I think this is going to happen. Just saying. And I would be marginally less upset about trading Inge if we got some kind of viable catcher in return, because you all know my obsessive concern with our catching situation.
pug mark 4
Just in case you missed it, Lynn Henning talked to Big Red after he was traded to Texas. Despite the generally positive spin (“Yay, starting! Yay, new opportunities!”), Shelton still comes off as a little sore that he didn’t get more chances to stick in Detroit. He did have lots of chances, in my opinion, but then again he also was kind of blocked out by the fact that a cushy, old-man-friendly position like first base isn’t where you want to be as a marginal player.
pug mark 5
Not strictly Tigers-related, but I thought this was interesting. The MVP, Cy Young, and rookie awards given out by the Baseball Writer’s Association of America can no longer be monetary incentives in player contracts. The idea is keep the awards about the awards themselves and not something guys gun for out of a desire for cash. Purity of the game and all that.
You can debate the rationale behind this, but in any event they do mean business:
Starting in 2013, players with such bonus clauses in their contracts will be banned from receiving votes for any BBWAA awards.
Detroit News article
Lots of big guys have these clauses in their contracts, although obviously only a very few are ever ‘activated’ each season. I guess the 2013 date is to give players time to purge the offending language from their contracts and to avoid it in new ones, but if someone leaves it in (accidentally or otherwise) and ends up being a deserving candidate, would they really be banned from consideration for the awards? Harsh, man, harsh.