The Winter Meetings are over. How did the Detroit Tigers do?
The 2022 MLB Winter Meetings have come and gone. Coming in, fans were hoping the Detroit Tigers would be at least be somewhat active, especially considering how barren of talent this roster currently is. Well, unfortunately we didn't get that.
The Detroit Tigers did virtually nothing at the Winter Meetings. No free agents signings. However, they did pull off a trade at the last minute, sending Joe Jimenez to the Atlanta Braves for prospects Justyn-Henry Malloy (OF/3B/1B) and Jake Higginbotham (LHP).
That's it. That was the only move not counting the Rule 5 Draft. That makes things pretty easy to grade. It's time go through and grade the Tigers' Winter Meetings. Strap in folks, because this is going to be a doozy.
Free agent signings: F
In school, if you didn't do an assignment, you didn't get credit for it. That's how this'll work as well. Scott Harris didn't sign any free agents, so he gets an F.
Okay, maybe it shouldn't fall directly on Harris. This is more of a group assignment, after all. Chris Ilitch gets an F as well for not allowing Harris to spend any money. I've already gone on about how the Tigers need to spend more money on free agents, so I won't get into that here.
I'll just say this: this team could be competitive in 2023 if they wanted to, but at this point it's pretty clear they don't. Which is a shame. There are more pieces here than most people realize. Whatever. Moving on.
It was going to be Fs all around before the Jimenez trade, but since it actually looks halfway decent on paper, I'll bump it up to a D.
Malloy walks a ton. He had an 18% walk rate in Double-A last season. He also hits the ball hard and doesn't miss on mistake pitches. He seems like a really solid prospect.
I was personally hoping they'd acquire a major-leaguer for Jimenez, but since he's on an expirting contract and he's really only got one year of lights-out stuff, this return makes sense.
Don't be surprised if Henry-Malloy ends up being really good. The Braves have drafted very well in recent years. Guys like Michael Harris, Spencer Strider, and Vaughn Grissom have become key contributors for them. Hopefully Malloy was well on his way to becoming Atlanta's next success story.
As for Higginbotham, he just seems like a throw-in piece to complete the trade. He'll just be another arm for Chris Fetter to work with.
Overall, I'd give the trade itself a B. It's a solid return for a reliever who's one year away from free agency.
The reason why the overall grade for trades is so low is simply because that's all they did. This one trade was the only thing this team did during the entirety of the Winter Meetings. It was very quiet.
Overall grade: D
This team still has gaping holes at third base and in the outfield. They still have a couple of months to fill them, so there's plenty of time, but it just feels like they missed out on several opportunities to get better.
The good news is that the trade market has been relatively quiet so far. Most of the major moves that happened this week were free agent signings. If Scott Harrris is going to improve this roster, that's probably how he's going to do it.
The Detroit Tigers have sat on the sidelines so far for the most part. There's still time, but this fanbase is growing restless. They want to see some moves. Hopefully the last two months of this offseason will be more active than this week was.