Sep 24, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher J. Verlander (35) gets set to pitch in the first inning against the Chicago White Sox at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
A $202 million arm: Justin Verlander is still the Tigers’ best pitcher – Rob Rogacki, Bless You Boys
"It’s no secret that Justin Verlander didn’t have a very good season in 2014. Despite a strong September, Verlander finished with a middling 15-12 record and a 4.54 ERA, his highest since 2008. He struck out just 17.8 percent of the batters he faced, his lowest percentage since 2006. His declining fastball velocity has been the subject of countless debates as to whether he is still the same pitcher that dominated baseball in 2011 and 2012. While many — myself included — have pointed to Verlander’s offseason surgery as a reason for his subpar 2014 season, the question remains: what will we see from Justin Verlander in 2015?In spite of all the unknown surrounding Verlander, he is still their best pitcher, their (multi-)million dollar arm."
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The Postmortem: Fix Your %#*^$(# Bullpen, Dave Dombrowski – Grey Papke, Walkoff Woodward
"It’s hard to see 2014 as anything other than a step back for the Detroit Tigers.The 2013 team was the best of the last four division champions. They were a few ill-advised pitches away from taking two games in Boston. If they took that second game, I suspect they close out that series and play a Cardinals team that did not rank among the finest Cardinals teams of recent years. It was a team that I firmly believe could have won a World Series – and probably should have.This season, however, felt like a struggle all season from mid-May forward. And they got swept in the ALDS, and they deserved exactly what they got.Why? A rotation that sometimes didn’t quite pitch to expectations, a bullpen that couldn’t close a doggy door, and a manager who far too often appeared to be in over his head."
Detroit Tigers Playoff Loss No Fault Of Dave Dombrowski – Tony Fischer, Detroit Jock City
"In the aftermath of the Detroit Tigers being swept out of the ALDS seamheads all around Detroit will be pointing fingers at the players and coaches that failed this season. Some may even turn the blame on Generla Manager Dave Dombrowski. The failure of this season rests with the entire team, that includes Dave Dombrowski but should the Detroit Tigers general manager get the majority of the blame?In my opinion the answer is no."