Blog Entry

Tigers patient on Victor Martinez replacement

Posted on: January 23, 2012 1:49 pm
Edited on: January 23, 2012 1:57 pm
It's been almost a week since the Tigers found out that Victor Martinez would likely be lost for the season with a knee injury, and the team still doesn't have a replacement.

What's taking so long?

Actually, it won't be a surprise if the Tigers' search for a Martinez replacement goes on quite a while longer, perhaps even into the 2012 season.

While the Tigers seem to have some interest in Raul Ibanez, Hideki Matsui and Vladimir Guerrero, and less in Johnny Damon, none of the possible Martinez replacements would provide the Tigers with exactly what Martinez gave them -- a quality switch hitter who gives Miguel Cabrera protection in the batting order.

The other option would be for the Tigers to stick with the players they already have, and to figure out as the year goes along whether they need to spend their resources on a designated hitter to replace Martinez or on filling other needs.

As of now, the Tigers are also without a definite fifth starter. They tried to deal for Gio Gonzalez, but lost out when they wouldn't include both Jacob Turner and Nick Castellanos in the same deal. They showed interest in free-agent Roy Oswalt (even having Justin Verlander put in a recruiting call), but were told that he was not interested in them (and seems headed for either the Red Sox or Cardinals). The Tigers have been linked by some to Matt Garza of the Cubs, but a Garza deal seems a real longshot.

While the Tigers haven't ruled out adding a veteran starter later in the winter, they now seem willing to go to spring training and pick a fifth starter there (with Turner one of the candidates).

Even without Martinez, and without a clear fifth starter, the Tigers should enter spring as the clear favorite in the American League Central. Barring further injuries, they should at the very least be able to remain in contention for the first half of the season, then look to make another midseason deal like last year's trade for Doug Fister.


Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: January 27, 2012 1:13 pm

Tigers patient on Victor Martinez replacement

Yes, because 3 years makes Brennan Boesch eons younger than David Wright. 

Since: Jan 2, 2008
Posted on: January 25, 2012 9:03 pm

Tigers patient on Victor Martinez replacement

"Oliver, Boesch, and a prospect should get it done."  I wouldn't give one of these guys up for a washed up old batter. Everyone wants to give the boat away for little to nothing in return.  Old players that are past their prime is not the way to improve your team.  We need someone to play 2nd base and 3rd.  We could probably live with Worth and Kelly or even Inge with the others that are in the line up.

Since: Oct 16, 2007
Posted on: January 25, 2012 5:55 pm

Tigers patient on Victor Martinez replacement

Call me crazy, but I think they will make an attempt to sign Prince Fielder.

Since: Jan 24, 2012
Posted on: January 24, 2012 2:03 pm

Tigers patient on Victor Martinez replacement

It would not be a surprise at all to see the Tigers and Dombrowski hold off on acquiring any of the mentionted replacements until the trade deadline. Competition in the AL central is mediocre at best and even without VMart they should be able to hold a few game lead by the break. Would not be a surprise to see them bid high on Cespedes and with very little word on the actual length of recovery, you could see VMart's return in September. The only opposite consideration is the desire of the aging owner to win a would he spend the money to land a top guy and forgo the future with a big trade??

Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: January 23, 2012 8:48 pm

Tigers patient on Victor Martinez replacement

I get why you'd want to do that deal, but I don't see any way even the Mets take a deal like that.  A guy who projects as middle of the rotation if he pans out, a decent-not-great outfielder, and a prospect for the guy who the Mets have presented to their fans as the face of the franchise?  I don't see you getting Wright without top-end talent in return - maybe if Turner is that prospect, but that's unlikely.

Since: Nov 14, 2006
Posted on: January 23, 2012 2:58 pm

Tigers patient on Victor Martinez replacement

They have a chance to run away with the division this year by adding a bat behind Cabrera and a 5th starter.  Otherwise Cleveland and Chicago could give them a run and you can never rule out Minnesota with Gardenhire.

I understand they don't want to trade Jacob Turner but you need to do something to get Miggy some protection.

What about trading for David Wright???   The Mets are rebuilding so Oliver, Boesch, and a prospect should get it done.

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