Detroit Tigers: Bringing Back C.J. Cron in 2021 Makes Total Sense

Detroit Tigers, C.J. Cron (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Detroit Tigers, C.J. Cron (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Tigers need to bring back C.J Cron as Detroit continues to figure out the first baseman depth chart.

Yesterday, C.J Cron spoke to the Detroit Tigers beat writers and announced he was going to have surgery on his knee. The sprain occurred on Monday’s game against the White Sox.

The surgery will be to repair a ligament in the knee. The original thought was to monitor the swelling and see if he could come back. Before the game yesterday, manager Ron Gardenhire announced that Jeimer Candelario would play first for the rest of the season.

This is a huge blow for the Tigers lineup. Early in the season, it appeared Cron was walking at a higher clip than last season (9 walks in 52 plate appearances for a 17.3% walk rate) in addition to his four home runs. While Detroit as a team has hit more home runs overall, his replacement at first, Candelario, has hit just one for the season.

Another aspect to consider is his replacement in the cleanup spot, Jonathan Schoop, for his career, has hit .208/.232./.342 with four home runs in 126 plate appearances. Defensively, he was solid but the bigger lost defensively is Candelario going to first as Jeimer is one of the better fielding third basemen in the league.

Before even the season began, Jacob Boes listed the three reasons why Cron should be re-signed for 2021. While it was a foregone conclusion that Spencer Torkelson would be the number one pick at 1st basemen, the curveball of draft day of the Tigers drafting Torkelson to play third and actually having him play the position in summer camp has thrown off the depth charts.

So far down in Toledo, the relative lack of progress updates about the players in camp, even likes of how Frank Schwindel is doing or Torkelson, is limited. You can only conclude based on who they have brought up that they are ready to be a part of the roster. Torkelson, for now, sets to be playing third base.

Bringing back C.J Cron for just another one year deal would make sense. It would help the Tigers fill a void at first base until whatever they decide to do long term becomes more clear. As of right now, it seems cloudy. The likes of Greg Bird and Logan Morrison would not be a fix either. Both players have been their numbers decline from a power standpoint.

Cron already endured himself to the Detroit fanbase with this tweet yesterday, which was nothing but first class.  The response he received was universal. Right now, Al Avila isn’t popular with the fanbase about not calling up Casey Mize (yet) but this move may help his popularity in Detroit.  Also, it does not require a petition.