Detroit Tigers: Division Rival Trade Targets

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Detroit Tigers
Jun 15, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura (23) pats Justin Morneau (44) on the back after the teams win against the Detroit Tigers at U.S. Cellular Field. The White Sox won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports /

Justin Morneau, White Sox First Baseman and Designated Hitter

The Detroit Tigers don’t really have a need for Morneau to occupy a starting spot. Nine times out of 10, Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez’ names will be penciled in at first base and designated hitter respectively.

However, one player who could provide a solid alternative to the two is Justin Morneau. Entering Thursday, the former Twin has gotten into five games with the White Sox. In those five contests, he’s hit .231 with a .333 on-bae percentage and a .308 slugging percentage. Morneau has also added a pair of walks, a double, a run scored and an RBI.

While he hasn’t played much this season, the veteran is only a year removed from a two-season stint in Colorado that saw Morneau hit .316 with an .850 OPS in 184 games, posting numbers extremely to the ones he put up in his heyday with the Twins.

From Torii Hunter and Delmon Young to Joe Nathan, the Tigers have made a practice of employing former Twins, and Morneau could be the next. The veteran would provide Brad Ausmus with another alternative to Jarrod Saltalamacchia as a pinch hitter off the bench. In Morneau’s career, he’s hit .297 with a 1.017 OPS as a pinch hitter.

The 35-year-old is also on an expiring contract and is a .282 career hitter at Comerica Park with 51 RBI, 37 extra-base hits and 31 walks in 77 games. He’d be an ideal fit.