Detroit Tigers: Projecting 2017 Opening Day Lineup

Apr 8, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera (24) is introduced before the game on Opening Day against the New York Yankees at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 8, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera (24) is introduced before the game on Opening Day against the New York Yankees at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Jun 7, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler (3) celebrates after hitting a game winning RBI single in the 10th inning against the Toronto Blue Jays at Comerica Park. Detroit won 3-2 in ten innings. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /

Second Base: Ian Kinsler
Age: 34
2016 Stat of Note: 5.8 WAR

Similar to Cabrera, Ian Kinsler continues to produce at an elite level despite approaching his mid-30s.

The second baseman led all Detroit players, Justin Verlander and Cabrera included, in WAR with a 5.8 number. That WAR was good for the 14th-best in the league among position players.

Kinsler stuffed the stat sheet in what was arguably his best offensive season.

In 153 games, the veteran hit .288 with a .348 on-base percentage, an .831 OPS, a .196 ISO and a wRC+ of 123.

He also chipped in with 178 hits, 117 runs scored, 83 RBI, 29 doubles, 28 home runs, 14 stolen bases and four triples. Kinsler also won his first Gold Glove last year.

The start of the 2017 season could bring more offensive production from the second baseman.

He’s hit more home runs (five) against James Shields than any other pitcher.

What’s more, Kinsler has also gone deep against Jose Quintana and Carlos Rodon.

All told, the veteran is two-for-six against Rodon with three RBI and a pair of hits.

His sample size against Quintana is slightly larger. Over the span of 47 plate appearances, Kinsler is a .304 hitter with 14 runs scored, three RBI and two doubles versus Chicago’s ace.