Detroit Tigers: An early look at some possible free agent targets

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse

The Detroit Tigers are due for a roster overhaul this offseason

The Detroit Tigers 2022 season is virtually over. They’re out of contention again, and at this point some guys are playing for their jobs. Once again, Tigers fans are left to look forward to the offseason.

It’s not yet known how active the Detroit Tigers will be on the free agent market. It depends on a lot of things, like who the next GM is, and whether chairman Chris Ilitch will open up his wallet again after seeing the the club regress after spending money last offseason.

One thing’s for sure: the Tigers will be cutting a lot of players. This roster will be torn to shreds by the new GM, especially if they come from outside the organization. The Tigers will have to replace those players somehow, and they can’t fill all those holes internally. They’re going to have to get creative.

Don’t expect this team to be in on big fish like Aaron Judge, Carlos Correa (assuming he opts out), or Justin Verlander (opt-out). I wouldn’t completely rule it out, but it just doesn’t seem like this team’s MO under Chris Ilitch’s watch. But there are some solid mid-tier options that the Tigers should be in on come wintertime.

So with all that being said, here’s an early look at some possible free agent targets for the Detroit Tigers this offseason:

IF Wilmer Flores

Detroit Tigers

DETROIT, MI – AUGUST 23: First baseman Wilmer Flores #41 of the San Francisco Giants tosses the ball to pitcher Carlos Rodon, who wasn’t able to field the throw, allowing Riley Greene of the Detroit Tigers to be safe at first base in the sixth inning at Comerica Park on August 23, 2022, in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)

No, the other one. It seems more and more likely that the Tigers will move on from 3B Jeimer Candelario this offseason. He’ll probably be due around $7 million in arbitration and they probably don’t want to pay that much for a guy that currently boasts a 0.3 bWAR.

So in steps Wilmer Flores, the brother of the Tigers pitching prospect with the same name. The 31-year-old is currently having a solid season with the San Francisco Giants, slashing .249/.331/.432 with 16 homers and a bWAR of 1.5. He’s been a low strikeout/low walk guy throughout his career.

Defensively, he’s played all around the infield throughout his career, mostly 2B and 3B. Basically, wherever a team needs him, he’ll play, though he’s never been great at any particular position.

With nobody in the farm system ready to step in and take the reigns at third base next year, Flores could be a nice one-year stopgap. He could split time between second and third with Jonathan Schoop, who seems destined for a utility role next season.

Flores would be pretty cheap as well. He’s making $3.5 million this season, so a raise to about $4 or $5 million would make sense on a one-year deal. Hopefully Colt Keith is ready by 2024.

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse