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Sunday, January 1, 2017

A different take on the 2017 Detroit Tigers

Michael Fulmer, 2016 MLB Rookie of the Year
"So in all likelihood, this will be the last go-round for the team as it's constructed."

This is what we have been hearing about the Detroit Tigers for the past couple years. The above was written in a post by Jason Beck calle, "Tigers try to might be in store for another shakeup."

Can sportswriters get more creative than this? It doesn't matter if you read articles at,, or any other site: they all say the same thing. If I were a sportswriter and couldn't say anything unique, then I'd be inclined to quit writing. 

Here at the RT Cave, it has been a mission that we don't rehash what is written on other writers. In fact, this is so important here that we have made it our written mission. In fact, our mission statement reads:

"Respiratory Therapy Cave was established to portray an accurate, non-politically correct view of the profession of respiratory therapy. The goal is: "Do not write like everyone else."

For crying out loud, I think I would quit writing if I wrote what other authors were saying and it was the same stuff I was saying. 

So, I think the Detroit Tigers are far from an elite team at the present moment, but I fail to believe they are on their last leg. 

For one thing, they missed the playoffs by a measly 2.5 games. This was true despite losing a freakish 14 times to the Cleveland Indians. I cannot fathom how that could possibly happen again. 

Likewise, they took almost half the season to establish their pitching staff. This was mainly due to fluke injuries, and to the fact it takes time to establish young pitchers, which was the case with Michael Fulmer and Daniel Norris. 

They have made few changes this offseason, despite a threat by GM Al Avila that all cards would be on the table, including possible trades of big names like Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez, Ian Kinsler, Justin Verlander, and J.D. Martinez. 

However, as of this writing, all of those guys are still on the team. Plus, Kinsler, J.D. Martinez and Upton will be free agents at the end of the 2017 season. So, it makes sense for the Tigers to keep their current team together with the hopes that they can make a shot at the playoffs this year. 

And, if they fail to stay healthy, or if their young players fail to live up to expectations, and they are out of the playoff running in July, they can trade Kinsler, J.D. Martinez and Upton at the trade deadline for potential big payoffs. This might not be unlike the blockbuster trades made midseason in 2015 when the Tigers traded big names for the likes of Fulmer and Norris among others. 

So, if the Tigers are in contention in July of 2017, then they should stay put. If they are out of contention, that they can trade upcoming free agents for prospects that can help them get to the playoffs in 2018. 

Plus, look at David Ortiz. He was 40 years old last year and had his third best season. He almost single handedly drove the Red Sox into the playoffs (and, along the way, drove my fantasy baseball team to our league championship). So, while many players see a decline in their mid to late 30s, there's no guarantee we will see with the likes of Cabrerra and Verlander. 

Being realistic here, they may fall flat on their face. But there are still many options for the Tigers to continue to stay in contention, at least so long as they have an owner like Mike Ilich who is salivating for a Detroit Tiger's World Series. 

So, my argument here, is the Tigers are far from "a last go around," as most other writers seem to contend. They might be right, but it would be boring for me to rehash what their pessimism about the 2017 Tigers. 

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