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Detroit Tigers Reportedly Avoid Arbitration with Andrew Romine

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Sep 22, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Andrew Romine (17) fields a ground ball in the ninth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. The Tigers won 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 22, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Andrew Romine (17) fields a ground ball in the ninth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. The Tigers won 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports /
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Detroit Tigers front office members headed into the offseason with six players up for arbitration. Now, according to the latest report, Andrew Romine and the team have avoided arbitration.

Detroit Tigers utility player Andrew Romine and the team have reportedly come to terms on a contract, avoiding arbitration in the process.

This is according to a tweet from FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman, who tweeted the news on Thursday night. The insider tweeted, “Andrew Romine, tigers settle at $1.3M.”

Romine, who is 31, just completed his third season in the Motor City. Detroit’s most versatile bench cog since Don Kelly, the veteran has hit .238 with a .294 on-base percentage during his time with the Tigers. Over that same span his OPS sits at .595.

Additionally, Romine has collected 76 runs scored, 43 RBI, 30 stolen bases, 16 doubles, 11 sacrifice hits, six home runs and a pair of doubles.

While the infielder is known more for his defense than power, it is notable that he’s collected 24 extra-base hits as a member of Detroit’s roster.

In parts of four previous seasons with Anaheim, Romine had just three extra base hits, all of which were doubles.

2016

During the 2016 season, Romine was arguably the Detroit Tigers most important bench cog. In a year that saw a multitude of center fielders, as well as a handful of different reserve infielders, the former Angel stood out.

All told, the utility ace notched a 0.6 WAR and a 71 wRC+ in 109 contests.

His WAR was the highest of any non-starting position player on Detroit’s roster, while his wRC+ finished only behind Steven Moya, Tyler Collins and Erick Aybar.

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Since joining the Tigers, Romine has accumulated a 1.5 WAR. The veteran came over from the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in a March, 2014 deal for relief pitcher Jose Alvarez.

While Alvarez has thrown some quality frames for the Halos, his WAR with the American League West franchise sits at just 1.0.

Defensive Versatility

Much of Romine’s value comes from his ability to play across the diamond. Just last season, the 31-year-old appeared at every position with the exception of catcher.

In addition to being able to play multiple positions, Romine also provides quality defense. He posted a 20.1 UZR/150 at third base last season, often serving as a late-game replacement for Nick Castellanos.

The 2016 campaign also saw him post positive numbers at second base (3.4 UZR/150).

While Romine saw regular work in the infield, he also played center field for the first time in the Majors last season.

In 130.2 innings at the position, the veteran was largely successful, with a stellar 35.6 UZR/150 at the position.

2016 Role With the Detroit Tigers

Even with Dixon Machado battling for a roster spot, Andrew Romine should make the Tigers roster come Opening Day. His defensive versatility in the outfield should help, as should his ability to make an impact on the bases.

Statistically speaking, Romine isn’t as solid of a defender at first base thanks to a career -8.1 UZR/150 and a -1.0 UZR.

Next: The 6 Tigers Prospects Who Just Missed MCB's Top 25 Rankings

However, he is the team’s most experienced option at the position outside of Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez. That in itself provides significant value.

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