Oct 17, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers shortstop Jose Iglesias (1) makes a catch against Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz (not pictured) during the third inning in game five of the American League Championship Series baseball game at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Detroit Tigers Links: Iglesias' Glove, Offseason Grades, Avila's New Deal

Jose Iglesias: Defense in Detroit – David Laurila – FanGraphs

Is it hyperbole to compare Iglesias to “The Wizard”? That’s a matter of opinion, but the mere fact it happens — Hunter isn’t the first to offer the comparison — says a lot. Omar Vizquel, who recently joined the Tigers coaching staff, is another name that gets thrown around. Plaudits come from more than just teammates. I asked some of the game’s best defensive shortstops about Iglesias, and all were effusive in their praise.

Jose Iglesias is certainly fun to watch in the field. His sub-par bat will be frustrating at times, but saving runs with the glove is just as valuable as driving them in with the bat.

Winter Report Card: Detroit Tigers – Joe Lemire – SI.com

That the Tigers would go through a transitional offseason became apparent a few days after their ALCS elimination when Jim Leyland retired after eight seasons as the club’s manager. A few weeks later, general manager David Dombrowski traded Prince Fielder, his $214-million first baseman, after only two of the nine seasons on his contract.

Lemire grades the Tigers’ offseason a C+ and remains unconvinced that they’re improved over last season.

Detroit Tigers agree to terms with Alex Avila to avoid arbitration – George Sipple – Free Press

“You prefer to get contracts negotiated if you can yourselves, rather than have the third party settle them, so that’s always been our philosophy,” Tigers president/general manager Dave Dombrowski said of once again avoiding going to an arbitration hearing.

As part of the deal, the Tigers now hold a $5.4 million club option on Avila for 2015, which could prove to be a pretty good deal for the would-be third-year arbitration eligible catcher.

Why are so many free agent starting pitchers still unsigned? – Patrick OKennedy – Bless You Boys

With just two weeks left before training camps open, there are a substantial number of free agent starting pitchers still without a team to report to. Why is that?

The Tigers surely don’t need a starting pitcher, but it’s interesting to examine the landscape around the game.

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