Spiderman is a Tiger.

illustration by Samara Pearlstein

Behold this outfielder, impressive in vertical leap and wall-scaling ability! Behold this man, by all accounts a perfectly good human being! Behold this name, recalling both the deadly patience of the woodsman and a Wheel of Fortune glut of vowels! Behold this American Central division, as it welcomes one of its own back into its freezing cold and not particularly quality-competitive embrace!

Torii Hunter is a Tiger. Two years, $26 million.

He can bat second in the order, and if he doesn’t fall off a cliff in the coming season, this will almost certainly be an improvement. Compare Hunter 2012 (.313/.365/.451) to Quintin Berry 2012 (.258/.330/.354). Did the SpeedBerry steal more bases? Sure (21 to Hunter’s 9). But I’ll take the hitting.

He can play right field. This too must be an improvement, assuming health– it is hard to imagine a regular right fielder of any moderate skill being worse than the Rotation of Misfit Outfielders we had the pleasure of experiencing in 2012.

He is one of those people who regularly uses ‘u’ and ‘ur’ for ‘you’ and ‘your’ on The Twitters.

I am on the whole excited for this… assuming health. Of course by now you all know how neurotic I get on that front. Hunter will turn 37 in 2013 and played 11 years on DEATH TURF, which is supposedly quite horrible for the ol’ joints. And he’ll be 37. And a more-or-less everyday outfielder. And 37. But for the reasons noted above, this does have the potential to turn out very well, very well indeed.

NOTE: The end-of-season recap/cartoon is forthcoming, but due to things like work and grad skool and being traumatized by the two World Series games I attended, it is taking some time longer than I had initially expected. Patience, my pets. Patience.

11 responses to “Spiderman is a Tiger.

  1. Hunter only cost the Tigers money-no prospects, no draft picks. He is an excellent fielder who will solidify our leaky defense, and hit well last year-especially in the second half of the season. I am ready for the 2013 season!

  2. I think Torii Hunter will be a good fit for our Tigers and the leadership presence that the clubhouse needs (along w/ VMart). Plus, we didn’t sell the farm or add another long-term/giant deal to get what we need.
    Great to see a new cartoon! Happy Day!

  3. From Wiklipedia: “A torii (鳥居) is a traditional Japanese gate most commonly found at the entrance of or within a Shinto shrine, where it symbolically marks the transition from the profane to the sacred.”

    2013 will be a sacred year for all Tiger fans

  4. I like the strategy of signing players formerly known as Tiger Killers. This has worked out exceedingly well with Mr. Jhonny Peralta. (Who, now that I think of it, could probably rival Torii in the interesting-spelling-of-the-first-names contest.

  5. Lest you wonder all these years later where Kent Hrbek’s missing vowel went…obviously it was liberated from his Twinkie locker and will now reside in Right Field in AL ballyards throughout 2013-14. Both Agatha Christie.com and Bill James confirm this saberphonetic confluence. btw, thanks, Sam.

  6. There’s something funny about the Hunter being a Tiger, just can’t quite put my punny finger on it.

  7. I think the Marvellettes said it best, “The Hunter Gets Captured By The Game.” (And yes I DO hope that becomes his walk-up music — if we’re forced to have such — at Comerica next season.)

  8. Samara, if I say wanted to buy a print of this, how much would it set me back?
    Just asking…

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