4. A.J. Hinch is not afraid of change
I agree with my podcast partner Chris Brown about how a manager on an MLB team is as good as the team is around him. The offense in April was a -2.0 fWAR and ranked dead last in the league. May? They produced a 1.9 fWAR and rose to 23rd in the league.
He is working with the parts he has been given and instead of a Voltron knockoff you find at the dollar store back in the day, Hinch has the Tigers looking like the actual Voltran with the sword and all.
As I mentioned before about how he handled Akil Baddoo, look how he has handled Casey Mize and Tarik Skubal by asking them to dig deeper and go further into games. He has given them the chance to make a decision and trust them with whatever the outcome may be and that has turned in the Tigers favor.
He pulled the triggers on Victor Reyes and JaCoby Jones and even recently, with Bryan Garcia. His faith in Jake Rogers has been steadfast, even before the season started when he wanted to rewrite the story on him.
While some may not agree on giving Willi Castro a longer leash, players like Harold Castro, who is hitting over .300 and sticking with Jose Cisnero, who was struggling for a bit but recently has been putting together a series of good appearances.
Hinch knows the Tigers have a long way to go but if you look at all the news in the AL Central with Tony LaRussa in Chicago and how his team is at odds with him, the Twins rough start and the Royals falling back to earth a bit, Hinch pulled together a solid month of baseball from a squad who was stumbling into May.
We have learned a lot about the Tigers so far but as far as A.J Hinch goes, I believe we are just seeing the beginning of his bag of tricks.