The Detroit Tigers' 2023 roster may be set. Here's where things stand as of now.
With last weekend's trade of Gregory Soto to the Philadelphia Phillies, the Detroit Tigers may be done making major changes to the roster. They may still sign some minor league free agents, such as yesterday's signing of LHP Chasen Shreve, but any major trades and free agent siginings appear to be done, barring something unforseen.
With everything likely being set, it's time to take a look at what the 2023 Opening Day roster could look like. There's still going to be some tough calls to be made, even with a 26-man roster.
There will some questions to answer as well. Who makes gets the fifth spot in the rotation? Who will fill all the spots available in the bullpen? Will A.J. Hinch carry three catchers? We will make our first guesses here.
We'll go position by position, starting with catcher. Let's begin.
Catcher: Eric Haase, Donny Sands
Catcher has become an interesting position for the Detroit Tigers. Scott Harris has added some much-needed depth at the position this offseason, with waiver claims Michael Papierski and Marco Feliciano, and trading for Donny Sands as part of the Gregory Soto trade.
At some point, Jake Rogers will be on this team, and he will take the backup catcher spot. But on Opening Day, I could see the Tigers going in a different direction to get Rogers some at-bats in Toledo. Remember, he hasn't had any live ABs since the 2021 season.
I went with Sands here just because of his offensive profile, but you could easily pencil in Feliciano here as well.
It's also possible that Hinch will want to carry three catchers again. Last year, Hinch had Haase, Tucker Barnhart, and Dustin Garneau on the 2022 Opening Day roster. This could open up the door for Haase to get some time in the outfield in an effort to get him some more at-bats.
First base: Spencer Torkelson
It was once though that the Detroit Tigers could have some sort of contingency plan in the event Tork struggles again, but it sure seems like they're all in on the former No. 1 overall pick.
He did look better after a five-week stint in Toledo, taking better swings and producing better exit velocities. But his overall numbers were still pretty poor.
The talent is there, as is the athleticism and overall plate approach. His swing could use some work, but he said he had no plans for any major overhauls this offseason.
Maybe the new hitting coaches can help him out. It would be a shame to see someone with as much talent and ability as Torkelson flame out.