So after spending the weekend blowing smoke and saying how the bullpen is fine that way it is it took General Manager Dave Dombrowski about five seconds to pull the trigger on a trade. They have added Jose Verras from the Houston Astros for prospect Danny Vazquez and a player to be named. That is a good move and it seems the team still needs to make another move. We shall see.
So of course we look at the splits. The Tigers are 59-45 and in first place by three games. That is still the second worst win total of the six teams in first place and that becomes more important as we progress to the fall and the playoffs. The Tigers are 7-3 over the last 10 (and a chunk of those games were played without Cabrera), and they beat up on the teams they should have this past week. that is important and for July they were 16-8 hopefully that means they will start to heat up and quit making the race for the division a race. It should not be. We will have to see what the addition of Verras does for the pen, but it has to be an improvement.
- Victor Martinez- Is Victor back? He all of a sudden is hitting .270 with 9 home runs and 59 RBI. If he keeps it up 1-6 this is the best lineup in baseball. The offense needs to stay hot and keep the pressure off the pitching staff. Victor and Prince Fielder are the keys to that.
- Matt Tuiasosopo- finally we have a big enough sample size to say this kid is legit and maybe should be playing everyday in left. With just over 100 at bats Tui is hitting .301 with some power. But 31 K's means he needs to have a little more patience at the plate
- Joaquin Benoit/Drew Smyly- the two reasons Dombrowski could get in front of the media and make a credible argument that the bullpen isn't as bad as the fans and media makes it out to be. These two guys are locking it down out there.
- Prince Fielder- It is hard to say bad when the guy is hitting .261 with 17 jacks and 75 RBI. However considering who he hits behind and in front of it seems like he should be doing more damage. he came top the plate how many times yesterday with the bases full? That is kind of the point here.
- Phil Coke- Do I really need to continue?
- Alex Avila- He just cannot hit MLB pitching and his far off his career numbers. We have now seen what this guy is and a championship team needs a guy who can produce out of the catcher's spot.