Detroit Tigers 2nd Baseman Ian Kinsler has been the talk of the Winter Meetings, and they should ensure he departs ASAP.
Vets like J.D Martinez, Alex Avila, Justin Wilson, Justin Upton, and Justin Verlander were all dealt away last season by the Detroit Tigers. Through these deals the Tigers have become significantly younger. They finished last in the AL Central for only the second time since 2009.
The latest Tiger veteran to have his name swirling around trade circles is starting 2nd baseman Ian Kinsler, and According to the Detroit Free Press, GM Al Avila is likely to trade the former 4-time all star.
That might be a good thing.
In 2017, he had career lows in batting average and OPS, and his 2nd lowest output in RBI’s at 52. He put up 45 in 2010, but played 36 less games.
This dip in production may be because Kinsler is getting older, entering his age 36 season in 2018. It is best to get whatever possible while he still has value, before his production dips even further.
To make things more interesting, According to MLB Pipeline, only one of the Tigers top 10 prospects in their system is an infielder (Isaac Parades is listed at No.9). This highlights their need to stock up their system on infielders with potential.
Another factor that may lead to Avila being confident in trading Kinsler is infielder Dixon Machado. Machado hit .259/.302/.319 in 72 games with the Tigers last season. Playing full time at second base, Machado would get the chance to further prove himself.
At age 26 he may not yet be ready for this role. However, in a season that is clearly one of rebuilding, it makes sense to try to acclimate him to the league when there is low expectations.
This trade could also work out for Kinsler as well. He might produce better numbers in a competitive environment, surrounded by other stars.
With teams like the Mets and Angels lining up to trade for Kinsler, it may be a smart idea to deal him while he is still a hot commodity.