They know their team better than us fans.
OT: Tigers Send Rondon to Minors
I wish the Tigers would stop hoping that guys in the minors will replace guys they choose not to sign or sign another player. They thought Scott Sizemore was the answer and didn't resign Polanco, that worked out well...
So what do you do with guys in the minors then?
I would just feel better if they brought these guys up in the middle of the year and see what they do before going in the offseason and assume he can handle the majors.
What's the difference?
The only way to find out what they can do is by letting them play everyday, why does it matter if they do it mid season or the beginning of the season?
I'd be awfully annoyed if in the middle of a pennant race in July and August the Tigers brought up a prospect and stuck him in the lineup to replace a regular "just to see what he can do."
So I wouldn't make the greatest GM ever, I'm willing to accept that.
what prospects are for! JV was "guy in the minors" (although not for very long b/c he played college ball) before joining the big league club.
It actually did.
Or do you not realize that Polanco has been awful at the plate since he left?
In every season since the Tigers let Polanco walk, their 2B have outperformed Polanco offensively, for fraction of the cost.
Letting Polanco walk was clearly the right move at the time, and looking back at it with hindsight it was still clearly the right move.
It's not like it's hard to replace an awful RP (Valverde).
They're one of the most successful GM/Manager duos in the league. They turned around arguably the worst team ever in the history of the MLB into a WS contender. They went to the WS twice and is expected to contend for the WS title this season. I would trust both of their judgement on what to do with their young players and they traditionally have been aggressive with their approach towards developing young players.
that is why they play the games.
rondon my still contribute this year but it looks unlikley that any proven closer is available for detroit at this time. hold out hope for help at trade deadline.
Closer by committee? This probably won't end well..
It's fine to start the season. They might find a diamond in the rough (like Phil Coke), but if they don't, they can always try to grab someone at the trade deadline.
Said no one ever....
Also said by no one ever "ahh yes Todd jones, guaranteed save"
I'm not all of that worried as long as they actually use the best guy for the situation, instead of trying to "experiment" with different closers.
I remember reading that even average relievers convert on 90% of their save opportunities.
I'd rather have my best RP come out and pitch out of a jam in the 7th inning than save him for 3 outs in the 9th.
Closer by committee is the way to go.
i've been saying this for years but no one does this. and agents wouldn't allow it either; wanting their guy to rack up saves.
is there are a lot of managers who are stuck in traditional way of using their closers at 9th innings. You should use your best relief pitchers in a tight situation whether if it's 7th or 9th innings. Saves are one of the more overrated statistics in baseball yet there are GMs who overpay for a mediocre closer because he has one shiny stats which is saves.
I do agree with you that closer by committee is the best way to do it. Jim Leyland have done it with the Pirates. He have some pitchers with closing experience like Dotel, Coke who have done well in playoff last year. If that's the biggest problem for the Tigers, it's not so bad because they still have good hitting lineup with A-Jax, Hunter, Miggy, Prince and V-Mart plus the best starting pitching rotation in the league.
Who needs a closer when you can score 10 runs a game?
The team who allows 11 runs in the 9th inning...
Ya I think this is the right move. He got shelled a couple times in spring. I'm so excited for monday.
He'll be the closer, IMO. They might start with a closer-by-committee setup...but it won't last long.
Given their massive, massive superiority in the Central, they've got plenty of time to get the closer situation figured out.
Brian Wilson time!!
He's coming off Tommy John surgery and won't pitch til June/July no thanks.
For what it's worth, I also like Albuquerque...
Agreed. I'm a big Al Al fan.
Al is a curious case, my assumption would be that he couldn't handle pitching in multiple games consecutively. His role right now really seems to be fire extinguisher, he can come in during high leverage situations to face either a lefty or a righty and can get a needed strikeout to stop a rally. I agree with you and think he has the necessary pitches to be a closer, but with his slider and injury history I'm just not sure he could be the full time closer.
To facilitate the discussion, here are Rondon's stats from the Tigers' MLB site:
ERA - 5.84
IP - 12.1
Oppoent BA - .327
17 hits, 8 runs (all earned), 2 HRs, 9 BBs and 19 strikeouts, good for a WHIP of 2.11, which was the 25th best among pitchers in camp. (LINK TO SORTABLE TABLE). There's not a lot of solid data to make any definitive judgment on Rondon really, and it seems like the hype makes this move seem more dramatic than it might otherwise be, but based on limited data, further development time might be the best thing for now. I imagine we'll see him at Comerica eventually anyway - the good side looks pretty good with Rondon.
The schedule in April does not seem that stressful overall, I would think, looking at who we are playing, so I don't see a problem with starting this way. The Tigers may be the only team in the Central that can potentially afford to be in this position going into the season, given other strengths of the team.
The Tigers should take advantage of this opportunity and eliminate the closer altogether.
Phillip J. Coke will lock the job down
I actually think closer by committee is an option that more teams should employ. It sure beats overpaying for a mediocre closer. I've always felt having a set closer is overrated. Unless you have a pitcher that really is a shut down guy in your bullpen, closer by committee is the best approach. Play the matchups and go with the hot arm.
Oftentimes, games present higher-levarage situations in the 7th or 8th innings. In these cases, teams will often employ a "relief ace" to get a couple critical outs. There was a Bill James study a few years ago which eschewed the ideas of specialized 9th-inning closers entirely.
Dotel has been a closer (22 saves in 2010). He's a little long in the tooth now, but knows the closer mentality - may at least be able to keep the seat warm until Rondon is ready. Albuquerque was 1 for 3 in save opportunities this spring with a 4.5 ERA (18 strikeouts but 7 walks in 12 innings). Villarreal, on the other hand, was 2 for 2, with a 2.79 ERA, 14 strikeouts and 3 walks in 12 innings. Given how much Leland likes relievers to get the ball over the plate and challenge hitters, it wouldn't surprise me to see Villarreal either take the closer position or the setup. Benoit is a candidate as well, although he wasn't put in save situations at all in spring training (1.80 ERA). Ditto for Coke (4.09 ERA).
I'm not sure whether Coke can do it over the long run. He seems like another Todd Jones - will give up some hits and walk and teeter on the edge every time he goes up. I would love to see a closer that just shuts things down with overpowering stuff. But, who knows, maybe we'll have a New Coke.
Don't need a closer when you're winning games by more than 3 runs right?
At least we can focus on the strengths of our team and use the deadline this year to get those final peices. Closers can be had in July - if Rondon doesn't get it together. I'm awaiting a summer where we don't need help at 5 positions and can get a quality peice or two to put us over the top.
Shy of fielding an all-star team the Tigers are there. It would be theoretically possible to upgrade at SS, but not realistic in the market. LF too maybe, but that's pointless with very good young outfielders coming through the system and close to the bigs. Not many teams have stars throughout the rotation, and if Porcello's added pitch and good command continue from the Spring he'll be better than good enough for a fifth starter.
So basically we're missing a closer, but we have multiple players capable of handling the role and a guy who got sent to Triple A to start the year to fine tune mechanics and control.
I'm hoping the closer committee can do a good job and maybe Rondon will be ready by mid or late season or something. I think they have enough arms to accomplish the task. I had heard talks earlier of trading Porcello for a closer but that it probably wasn't going to happen because they had Rondon. I wonder now that Rondon isn't ready they will consider this? They had also suggested trading Porcello for a SS, which would make better sense.
ive seen rumors of porcello getting traded or getting bumped to the bullpen/getting a change to close but porcello has been on the trade block seemingly for the last 4 years
This may not do with the blog but, the picture you have and quote! I had that Tshirt forever when I was younger and then my brother stole it and lost it. How'd you get that image? I can't find a larger image or where to buy that shirt again. I got the shirt orginally like 12 years ago..
I have no idea why he didnt get a real chance to win the job himself this year, or why he was left off the post-season roster last year. Not quite as good against lefties, maybe, but still held them to a .507 OPS last year, which is great. Seems like he's fourth or fifth in line, but he's got great stuff, and great numbers to go with his stuff.
From what I've seen, he's a basket case out there, a mental midget. Leland doesn't trust him to get those final 3 outs
Makeup concerns. Serious makeup concerns are the issue
no, just no
the serious concerns are that he's not yet developed any type of reliable 2nd offering, and that's not something you can just mentally overcome through guile and makeup or whatever, at the MLB level
this is the right move
Now I have to drop him from my fantasy team
...I wish we had an MVP closer like Willie Hernandez (who doesn't) but if that's the biggest problem facing the team, I'm not worried much.
They'll get it sorted out during the season. Maybe someone will step up. Or ore likely Dombrowski gets a steal of a deal as the trade deadline approaches.
You start the game, you finish it!
Meh. The closer is the most overrated position in baseball. Managers actually cost their teams games by not having more than one guy available in the 9th IMO. You should have your best reliever pitch in the most critical point of the game and let whoevers hot close the game out with someone else ready in case that pitcher gets into trouble.
With that said, I have no doubt Leyland will find the most challenging way possible to get the job done...
That sentiment is idiotic. Well, just ask future hall-famers Hoffman and Rivera, and the best damn closer in the game Craig Kimbrel about closer by committee.
the guys you mention are great closers and saved tons of games. but how many games were lost in the 7th and 8th innings for those teams? when mgrs bring in their #2 or #3 relief pitcher in a jam in the 7th or 8th only to blow the game. meanwhile, the hoffmans, riveras, kimbrels sit their idle in the bull pen.
the theory is that it's better to bring in your ace in a jam in the 7th or 8th and let the #2 or #3 guy close out the game with a 2 or 3 run lead and no one on base.
leyland, kind of unwittingly fell into this in 2006 when he used his most dominant guy (zumaya) to pitch out of jams and jones collected the easy saves.
Between flashes of brilliance, he had mechanical and control issues this spring. It would be possible to get him innings without being the closer but he's just a kid playing a position that's mostly psychological. Far better for him to make changes and improve at Triple A where he won't have to worry so much about mistakes getting pounced on, and where the coach won't have to worry about that scenario shaking his confidence.
I expect to see him under the bright lights this summer, and don't think that closer by committee is anything to worry about in the first 1/3 - 1/2 of the season anyhow.
I'm a little bummed the Berry didn't make the team, but they really wanted a right-handed bat and Tuiasosopo hit well. I think i'd rather have Berry's speed to plug into the lineup. I am glad that Don Kelly has been hitting well and made the team; his versatility is huge if he can keep hitting.