The Detroit Tigers are the aging kid on the block.
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That’s not to say they are getting old, but they have a good mix of youth and veterans. But it is kinda like when your friends have a baby and the five-year old becomes old news. The Tigers have been winning and in the postseason for several years now and the sports media seems ready to move on and anoint a new contender from the AL Central whether it is Cleveland, Chicago or Kansas City.
Some, like Bill Madden of the New York Daily News, feel the Tigers’ window is closing. In the last decades or so, however, I think baseball has shown that teams can be very competitive, drop off, and then become World Series contenders again. Even if the Tigers don’t make the playoffs this year, they can still rise from the ashes. Stranger things have happened.
Finally, the Tigers are being a bit elusive on the Justin Verlander injury front. He says he’s fine but “sore” and the team won’t acknowledge if he will make his next start–his final one of Spring Training. This sorta reminds me of the way Jose Iglesias‘ injury was treated a year ago where it went from being a minor injury which will keep him out a few days to out for a few weeks to missing Opening Day to, finally, out for the year.
I am certainly not saying that’s the case with Verlander but the Tigers, as it seems with all sports teams, don’t seem to be very forthcoming in the injury department. One thing is for sure, I don’t see a “cramp” lasting into a fourth day…
Window for a Detroit Tigers World Series title is closing – Bill Madden, New York Daily News
"A few days ago, a veteran scout sitting in the stands at Joker Marchant Stadium watching the Detroit Tigers working out, turned to his comrades and suddenly declared: “You know what this team reminds me of? The Yankees. There’s a lot of similarities here.”It was not meant to be a compliment, nor would Tigers president Dave Dombrowski likely take it as one.The scout went on to describe the Tigers as “an older, plodding team, with not a whole lot coming in their system, and some burdensome contracts that are gonna really choke ’em down the road.” Dombrowski, of course, would prefer to think of the Tigers as a team that has won four straight American League Central titles and — with an imposing lineup including Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez, Ian Kinsler, J.D. Martinez, Yoenis Cespedes and promising sophomore Nick Castellanos (combined 130 HR/546 RBI last year), along with their “Big Three” starters, David Price, Justin Verlander and Anibal Sanchez (combined 75 wins over the past two seasons, plus three Cy Youngs, and a no-hitter) — is in prime position to make that five straight and go deep into October."
Will Gose be Tigers’ next diamond in the rough? – Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press
"The Tigers’ newest centerfielder, Anthony Gose, is having the best spring training of his life. Then again, he has been in only three major league spring camps.Maybe that’s why Gose doesn’t want to draw much from the spring he’s having at the plate.“If I was doing this at the All-Star break,” he said recently, “then we can talk.”Can’t blame Gose for downplaying what he has done this March. After all, his success has come against major league pitchers getting ready for the season and minor league pitchers who are … well, minor league pitchers.Besides, dozens of players rip through the spring every year, then trip up in the majors. It’s a tale as old as baseball.One the Tigers hope Gose will avoid."
Justin Verlander: Triceps feels ‘better’ – Jayson Stark, ESPN
"Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said Verlander did some light tossing at the team’s spring training camp at Lakeland and still felt “a little bit tight,” but otherwise reported some general improvement.“He felt better today,” Ausmus said before the Tigers’ game Sunday with the Philadelphia Phillies. “Not completely better, but he feels better than he did yesterday.”Asked if that meant better or “a little” better, Ausmus replied: “He said, ‘better,’ when I asked him.”"