3. The Detroit Tigers need depth, depth, depth
Having a key injury or departure is no excuse to have a poor season–although the Detroit Tigers’ year was particularly littered with weirdness, plenty of teams currently in the playoffs dealt with sizeable injuries and won despite them. How they’ve done it is by having the depth either in the minor leagues, their bench, or external resources to withstand the loss and win despite it.
The Dodgers have been without Trevor Bauer all season due to unexpected allegations of sexual misconduct; the Rays were likewise without their best pitcher for an extended period in Tyler Glasnow; the Mariners were counting on one-time top prospect Jarred Kelenic to be a middle-of-the-order bat in their lineup but his performance had him in the minor leagues most of the season; Cavan Biggio was optioned for the Blue Jays and hit just .202 in 97 games; Jordan Hicks dealt with injuries a good part of the season, and on, and on.
On the pitching side, the Detroit Tigers should have the depth to sustain a season, especially if they sign a starter in addition. There are some question marks with how ready Spencer Turnbull will be along with the severity of Matt Manning and Tarik Skubal’s injuries, but with the emergence of depth arms like Alex Faedo and Joey Wentz, they have some help in the event of inevitable injury. Mainly–they should look to either demote some of their current position player starters like Jonathan Schoop or seek to fill out their roster with more talented and more ready help than they have in past seasons.