The Detroit Tigers cannot give up on Austin Meadows this quick.
While things did not go as planned for the Detroit Tigers and Austin Meadows this summer, it is far too early to give up on the outfielder. Even though Meadows had many unfortunate injuries this summer, he was solid when he played.
Meadows had a stunted start to the season, playing 36 games before the injury train began. Meadows was off to a good start, though, slashing .250/.347/.328 with six doubles and two triples to his credit.
Then, vertigo issues set in and caused Meadows to wind up on the Injured List (IL), and during that time, he had a bout with COVID-19, which kept him off the field. Beyond that, he managed to strain both of his Achilles tendons which also kept him off the field.
The extreme stretch of unlucky injuries caused him some damage that wasn’t easily repaired. While his physical health recovered, the mental struggles from consistent setbacks and being stuck off the field got to him.
Finally, Meadows’s 2022 season ended as he continued to battle through some mental health struggles. It was great to see how the Tigers organization handled the situation, allowing their player to take the time he needed and offering support to help him get through these battles.
Moving forward, the Tigers cannot give up on Meadows. They gave up Isaac Paredes and a compensatory draft pick for Meadows and got nearly nothing out of him this year. The 36-game stint was great but left the Tigers wanting much more.
As the 2023 season comes into focus later this offseason, Meadows should be kept around. Contrary to some fans who feel the team should cut their losses and move on, it feels like Meadows still has plenty to offer.
While there may be an impending roster purge, Meadows deserves a real chance to get back on the field. There was a lot of excitement when Meadows was acquired. Keeping him around to have a shot at strutting his stuff in 2023 when he’s healthy is the best way to go.
The Tigers must avoid making the mistake of giving up on him too early.