Austin Meadows time with the Detroit Tigers could be ending.
The Detroit Tigers off-season is underway. The team has plenty of work to do and a plethora of decisions to make when it comes to their roster moving forward. One of them will be what the next steps are with outfielder Austin Meadows.
Let's start by saying this. The Detroit Tigers have handled the situation with Austin Meadows with the utmost respect and a ton of professionalism. It's been good to see how the team has handled things with Meadows, ensuring he gets the help he needs as he continues dealing with anxiety issues and some mental health struggles that have kept him away from the field.
It may be a bit frustrating for Detroit, who has yet to see Meadows play a full season with the team, but it seems that his time may be heading toward the end with the Tigers organization. To an extent, at least. Either way, it might be the end of the road for Detroit.
For Detroit, the Meadows trade has been tough to swallow for some time now. The team gave up Isaac Paredes, who has become an absolute merchant of a pull-side power hitter with the Tampa Bay Rays. They also gave up a compensation round draft pick, which has to be tough to swallow in hindsight.
But, the Tigers made the trade, expecting they would pick up a beneficial player. Heck, when he was healthy and in the lineup, for the extremely minimal times he has been, Meadows has been fine and looked good for the Tigers.
But, with the off-season upon us, the Tigers are heading toward a decision point with Meadows. The team will likely be heading down a road where Meadows receives a non-tender. While it was rumored that Meadows could come back to Detroit on a minor-league deal, the expectation is that he will be non-tendered by Detroit.
Meadows will hit free agency and either search for another place to play, hoping to get back into the big leagues with a fresh start, or possibly stick with the Tigers and return on a minor-league deal, hoping to one day get back to the big leagues.
It's a really tough situation all around for Meadows and the Tigers organization, but at the end of the day, it's a business, and those decisions must be made. The Tigers likely do not want to give up on Meadows, but he's been unable to get back on the field, and some things will have to give at some point.