In the latest saga that is the Detroit Tigers off-season, former Detroit Free Press writer Jon Paul Morosi offers his latest fits on possible suitors for the Detroit Tigers big three in his latest work on Fox Sports. As the talks of potential suitors for Miguel Cabrera, Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson heat up, so does the chances that one of these three being dealt before the start of the 2010.
Who would of thought that when the Tigers acquired what they considered the “final piece” before the 2008 season it was for the next great slugger to be dealt.
According to Morosi, that would become easier if the Tigers offered to pay some of Cabrera’s contract. Here are Morosi’s thoughts on the Topic:
"The extent of Cabrera’s availability remains unclear, although Dombrowski would probably welcome the opportunity to divest from the $126 million commitment to Cabrera over the next six years.One National League executive asserted in recent days that the Tigers could receive an enticing prospect package for Cabrera if they were willing to kick in around $5 million per year to help the new team pay his salary.If the Tigers are willing to do that, the field of suitors for Cabrera would expand to include those with more modest spending power."
It is still hard to fathom as a Tigers fan getting rid of Cabrera. Knowing the history of Dave Dombrowski and the waning feelings after Cabrera’s late season stunt, it could all be possible. My only hope as a fan would be that at least 2/3 of the talent acquired in a deal for Cabrera could make an impact immediately. Morosi goes on to note the teams that could be good partners for the Tigers and possibly interested in Miguel Cabrera. Of course these are all based on his opinion.
Team Matches for Cabrera:
Angels- They have cheap and available players at every position the Tigers are looking for. Cabrera could easily become the face of a franchise and might put that team over the top and one of the early favorites for a World Series Championship. Kendry Morales could be a solid replacement at first and the Angels present many options in the bullpen, young starting pitching and middle infield help. We will cover the Angels a bit later in discussion of other players.
Braves- These two teams have a trade history and the Braves have one of the best developing minor league talent in the game. Freddie Freeman is a solid talent at first base in the minors. A lot of young pitching in this organization is what could make a deal happen. With Miguel Cabrera, this offense could be back on the top of the National League. Again, we will talk about this team a bit later.
Giants- I don’t think the Giants will be true players, but they have the talent to trade away and they have an overaggressive GM that could do anything to get this team over the hump. Any deal would start with pitching prospect Madison Bumgarner.
Mariners- Another team with extremely good young talent. Miguel Cabrera might be a little out of reach in my opinion. The Mariners have great power arms, but not an exciting package that would land the big slugger. I also don’t see Jack Zduriencik making that big of a splash this off-season.
Mets- Free spenders in the Big Apple, but winners in a Cabrera sweepstakes? Not as plausible as say Edwin Jackson. The Mets need so much help in the rotation that they are going to have to allocate a lot of their 2010 spending to it. Cabrera could be the other iconic player in New York not named A-Rod, but the chances have to be slim.
Red Sox- If Cabrera is somehow traded, I believe that the best option would have to be the Red Sox. They present young pitching in either bullpen or starter form. Lars Anderson is a true first base prospect and they can afford the full contract of Cabrera without help. If you are dealing Cabrera, the whole ideal is clearing as much cash as possible in the foreseeable future.
When talks of Curtis Granderson started swirling, my initial reaction was that dealing him would be ludicrous. How can you sell to a fan base that one of the best up and coming outfielders is expendable at the right place. I’ll be quite frank. I let my personal affection for him get in the way of judgment. Granderson is at the “peak” of his career. There is no other time the Tigers will get more value from their starting center fielder. Dave Dombrowski will be greeted most likely with more suitors for Granderson than any other player on his roster. Right now he is young, sound defensively, and for his talent is rather cheap (to an extent). Just because he gets offers though, doesn’t mean the Tigers will be quick to move the center fielder. Here are the names Morosi believes could be players in the Granderson Sweepstakes:
Angels- Good fit for both clubs. Outfield is the depth of the Tigers and the Angels really need a young spark to fill the void that Vlad Guerrero opens.
Braves- If the Tigers do trade Granderson, it seems one of the big goals is to get young and cheap starting pitching as well as a replacement outfielder. Jason Heyward would be a starting point for the Tigers.
Mariners- The talks have already been documented. Brandon Morrow alongside Carlos Triunfel is a good starting point. Imagine that outfield defense with Granderson in left field.
Mets- I don’t see a good fit here considering all the money the Mets have invested in the outfield. Fernando Martinez would be a return in the deal if it did happen though. Martinez to me is an overrated talent.
Red Sox- There are only two reasons I could see the Red Sox pursuing Granderson. If Jason Bay and Matt Holliday land elsewhere, then it could be a scrambled possibility. If the Tigers back out of any Cabrera deal and the Red Sox feel they need to add a lefty, then the Red Sox could get interested. If for anything, just to block the Yankees from getting him.
Yankees- The Yanks are one of the more intriguing teams interested. They believe that overall his talent supersedes that of prospect Austin Jackson. I would think in the same path. If the Yankees target John Lackey or another starter by trade, then a slew of doors open up pitching wise. Ian Kennedy, Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes could be pieces of a deal. The Yankees could scramble if they cannot re-sign Johnny Damon or Hideki Matsui as well.\]
Coming up later we will break down Edwin Jackson rumors plus teams that would be interested in two or more of these players.