Detroit Tigers News

Detroit Tigers: Midseason Awards

apatton
TORONTO, ON - JULY 1: Nicholas Castellanos #9 of the Detroit Tigers hits a grand slam home run in the fifth inning during MLB game action against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre on July 1, 2018 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JULY 1: Nicholas Castellanos #9 of the Detroit Tigers hits a grand slam home run in the fifth inning during MLB game action against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre on July 1, 2018 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
5 of 5
Next
Detroit Tigers
MINNEAPOLIS, MN – MAY 21: Blaine Hardy #36 of the Detroit Tigers delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins during the first inning of the game on May 21, 2018 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

Biggest Surprise – Blaine Hardy

There have been quite a few surprises for the Detroit Tigers this season. Matthew Boyd emerging as Detroit’s best starter has certainly been a big one. As has the stellar performances from all three one-year rentals: Francisco Liriano, Mike Fiers and Leonys Martin. John Hicks has been one of Detroit’s steadiest offensive performers, and of course Jose Iglesias already has a career-high in stolen bases at the season’s halfway mark.

However, I’ll give the edge on most surprising to Detroit’s hybrid starter/reliever, Blaine Hardy. After an outstanding start to the season at Triple-A Toledo, Hardy was recalled and placed in the starting rotation. Injuries had left the Tigers without many options to start, so Hardy got the nod despite having never made a big league start.

That didn’t seem to bother him. Across eight starts, Hardy went 3-1 with a 3.71 ERA and a 30/10 K/BB ratio. This included seven innings of one-run ball against the White Sox and a pair of six inning, two ER outings in early June against the Blue Jays and Twins, respectively.

Hardy is back in the bullpen for now, where he has a 1.80 ERA and just earned his first save of the season. This level of production is a complete surprise, as he started the year off in Triple-A and many expected he would be DFA’d or released. Now, he emerges as one of Detroit’s better all-around pitchers, and a potential trade candidate if a team is willing to buy into his early season success.

Next: 2006 Tigers: Where are they now?

We would love to hear your thoughts! Anyone you think we overlooked? Any awards you’d like to see us dish out? Let us know in the comments here or on Facebook or Twitter.

facebooktwitterreddit