Moleskyn

November 14th, 2012 at 12:44 PM ^

We'll be lucky if Hunter hits .300 or better this year. He's a career .277 hitter, and this was the first year he hit over .300 (the closest he had been before this year was .299 in 2009). Plus, his BABIP was an unsustainable .389 this past season.

Still, I'll take .275 with .300+ OBP and solid defense. Great pickup by the Tigers, but let's keep our expectations realistic.

Edit: Here's the link to his Fangraphs page.

Moleskyn

November 14th, 2012 at 5:02 PM ^

That's one thing I noticed too, and has me a little worried. His inflated BA hides the fact that his K and BB numbers slid last year. It's hard to tell what's really the case though: is he losing his plate discipline as he's getting older? Was it just him feeling like he needed to be more aggressive, since LA got into a hole early in the season? Maybe he'll be able to be more patient knowing that he's got Cabrera, Fielder, and VMart hitting behind him. Man, that sounds so good.

GRBluefan

November 14th, 2012 at 1:22 PM ^

actually be the perfect #2 hitter.  Switch hitter, great plate discipline, good OBP guy, rarely swings and misses.  Everything you would want, except a bit less speed.  I would like to see the good OBP guys bat ahead of Miggy and Prince, as opposed to behind.  Hunter would slot in much better in the 5 spot than the 2 anyway. 

ChopBlock

November 14th, 2012 at 12:13 PM ^

What's the deal worth?

This could turn out really well or really poorly for the Tigers. Hunter had a great year last year (hit over .300 IIRC), but he's also getting to be pretty old. Depends if this is a late-career resurgence for him, or just a good year. I know prior to last year people were saying he was starting to decline, and I think his power has decreased somewhat.

Phil Brickma

November 14th, 2012 at 12:18 PM ^

I don't see how there is a downside for this signing. AJ in center, Hunter in left, platoon Dirks, Berry, Boesch/Garcia in right.

Also, they aren't signing Hunter for power. They are signing him for the intangibles: improved defense in LF, improved two/six hitter, veteran leadership. Details haven't come out yet, but I'd assume its around 24-26 mill. And the money really doesn't matter because Ilitch has opened the checkbook to win a ring.

MichFan1997

November 14th, 2012 at 12:15 PM ^

Preferred one year instead of two, but whatever. Happy to have him. Has anyone heard if we are going to use him as a lf or a rf? I would guess left when he's playing with Garcia and right when he is with Dirks

Jack Daniels

November 14th, 2012 at 12:20 PM ^

Probably 2 for 27, maybe 28. Anything more than 30 is bad because Beltran's 2 for 26 is the closest comparable and he is a superior player to Hunter. I really like this though. Put him in the 2 hole and our lineup looks 10x better. Plus, he can play a good left field

LSAClassOf2000

November 14th, 2012 at 12:22 PM ^

Some summary offensive stats for Hunter for 2012, for reference:

.313 BA, 16 HR, 92 RBI

167 hits, 81 runs, .365 OBP. and .817 OPS

If he can produce comparably this coming season, that gives the Tigers' lineup a little more horsepower and ability to produce runs, so it is an upgrade in this sense alone.

One thing that I think you get with Hunter, however, is someone who can mentor young outfielders, which would be an intangible but definitely useful in the clubhouse. He has historically gotten rave reviews for this ability.