For the Detroit Tigers to be a better team in 2015, quite a few things have to happen.
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Two of those things that could go a long way to establishing success is by seeing defensive improvement from third baseman Nick Castellanos and for Justin Verlander to either turn back the clock or develop a new recipe for success.
The first two links for today address each of these. The Tigers are well aware that Casty is not a Gold Glove candidate at third, but his emerging bat gives the team value. But is his future at that position? The Tigers will get him a lot of chances.
As for Verlander, he’s well aware of the pitching issues of the last two seasons and told Dan Dickerson that he is committed to becoming a dominant pitcher once again.
After a day in which a reporter stated the Tigers were interested in Sergio Romo and pulled back that report and Buster Olney doubled down on his contention that Detroit was going hard core after Max Scherzer despite Dave Dombrowski’s refutes, the trade that won’t die reared its head again on Wednesday. The Rick Porcello for Yoenis Cespedes deal is still possible, but the Tigers would likely need Scherzer to stick around for the deal to make sense in 2015. But what comes first, the chicken or the egg. In this case, what comes first Max resigning or this deal being struck?
My money is on neither, especially with reports of Scherzer seeking $200 million. Which is a joke.
‘No question’ Tigers want Castellanos to improve defense – Chris McCosky, Detroit News
"“We’re looking for him to improve, there’s no question,” president and general manager Dave Dombrowski said. “Now, when I say that, we try to give him the benefit of the doubt. He hadn’t played third base in a while and all of a sudden it’s his first year at the big league level.”That said, the Tigers need Castellanos’ defense to take several steps up. He ranked at or near the bottom of most of the defensive categories. In traditional measures, he made 15 errors in 145 games and had a .950 fielding percentage.The advance metrics, though, shine a truer light on his shortcomings – specifically on his lack of range. Castellanos was a minus-30 in defensive runs saved, which is the number of runs above or below the average the defender was worth based on number of plays made."
"“(Verlander) is very much like every other very talented player I’ve ever played with,” Ausmus said. “Most guys, when they’re that good and they’ve done things a certain way and have had All-Star, Cy Young, MVP-type success, they’re not in a hurry to change it. But I do think (Verlander) is finally understanding that it may be time to do some things that he didn’t do before in order to get that successful second half of his career.”"
Detroit Tigers Rumors: Rick Porcello For Yoenis Cespedes Trade Makes Sense If Max Scherzer Returns – Jacob Kornhauser, Rant Sports
"This could motivate the Tigers to move even more quickly in extending Scherzer on an offer that will be hard to turn down. That way, they can make sure they have a top three of Scherzer, Justin Verlander and David Price while also being able to acquire Cespedes on an essential one-year loan, since he will be a free agent after the season.With a deal like that, the Tigers could be considered among the favorites in the AL. However, should they make this trade and then not be able to sign Scherzer to an extension, the rotation would be in real trouble. Everything hinges on Scherzer’s timetable for signing a contract. Detroit better ramp up their pursuit."