The Detroit Tigers certainly did not disappoint over the Thanksgiving weekend. First, long-time minor-leaguer Mike Hessman retired and second, the Tigers filled a pitching spot with a real gem.
May 30, 2014; Toledo, OH, USA; Toledo Mud Hens third baseman Mike Hessman (27) against the Charlotte Knights at Fifth Third Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Hessman was unmistakable on the diamond. Standing 6’5, his range at third base was remarkable and he was the perfect target at first. He spent his last couple of years in baseball with the Toledo Mud Hens in the Detroit Tigers AAA affiliate. He is the current minor league home run king with 433. His last one was a grand slam in August. He has played in several teams east of the Mississippi River including the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, various Atlanta Braves minor league teams, and the Buffalo Bisons. He also played for International League teams in Japan and Venezuela. He made a few major league appearances with the New York Mets, Atlanta Braves, and Detroit Tigers. He plans to stay in baseball as a coach.
In even more exciting news, the rumors about the Detroit Tigers signing Jordan Zimmermann have come to fruition. According to Jon Heyman with CBSports, the signing became official this morning.
The signing will cost the Tigers their second draft pick, but not their protected ninth pick in the first round. His contract will most likely be for five years and $110 million. It seems appropriate that the Tigers get a pitcher from the Nationals, especially after they have benefitted from both Doug Fister and Max Scherzer. It is likely that Zimmermann will pitch second in the rotation between Verlander and Sanchez (unless Sanchez is traded).
With this signing, Al Avila continues to impress the fan base and the players by adding quality players at affordable prices. This signing still leaves enough money in the account to go after another quality arm, an outfielder, and some additions to the bullpen.