Detroit Tigers All-Time Lists

Detroit Tigers Top 10 Shortstops in franchise history

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DETROIT, MI - JUNE 06: Jose Iglesias #1 of the Detroit Tigers makes a play to first base for an out in the first inning during a MLB game against the Los Angeles Angels at Comerica Park on June 6, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - JUNE 06: Jose Iglesias #1 of the Detroit Tigers makes a play to first base for an out in the first inning during a MLB game against the Los Angeles Angels at Comerica Park on June 6, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images) /
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Detroit Tigers
DETROIT, MI – JULY 16: Juan Pierre #1 of the Chicago White Sox steals second base next to Carlos Guillen #9 of the Detroit Tigers during the third inning at Comerica Park on July 16, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

Carlos Guillen

Detroit Tigers: 2004-2011

Acquired in a truly great trade heist in Tigers history, Carlos Guillen went on to have a storied career in the Motor City. Guillen was with the Mariners from 1998-2003, before getting traded to the Tigers in exchange for minor league Juan Gonzalez and Ramon Santiago. Santiago made his way back to the Tigers in short order, and Guillen went on to make three All-Star games with the Tigers.

For his Tigers career, it’s easy to see why Guillen is ranked so highly: He slashed .297/.366/.476 with a 121 OPS+ and an 18.6 bWAR in 817 games, 487 of them at shortstop.

He started off with a bang in the Motor City, hitting .318/.379/.542 with 20 home runs, 97 RBI, 12 stolen bases and a blistering 143 OPS+ in 2004. He missed about half of the 2005 season but returned to form after that.

2006 is one of the greatest seasons in Detroit’s storied franchise history, and Guillen was a big reason why. Serving as the team’s primary shortstop and number five hitter, Guillen slashed .320/.400/.519 with 19 home runs, 20 stolen bases, 85 RBI, a 136 OPS+ and a 6.0 bWAR. He finished tenth in MVP voting. He was one of Detroit’s strongest postseason hitters as well.

Guillen went on to play five more seasons with the Tigers, although his last two were spent primarily on the disabled list. He was also moved around the diamond quite a bit, spending time at first base, second base and even left field. He ended up signing a minor league deal with the Mariners in February 2012 but voluntarily retired less than a month later.

Still, even though Guillen as a sub-par defender and spent a good chunk of time playing other positions, it’s clear he’s one of the greatest shortstops in Tigers history.

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