The Tigers’ Great Debate

Reaction from around the league with the latest Dombrowski deal has been generally positive, as MLB GMs continue to scratch their heads on how Jarrod Washburn was dealt with relatively little conceded to the Mariners.

washburnYes, Washburn is weeks away from becoming a free agent, but he’s having a season this year that scouts had long dreamed about. Even in this shocking trade’s long wake, Tigers fans look at the anemic offense and wonder why another bat was not added to the lineup.

Since June 26, when the Tigers blew their first game in Houston, Detroit has scored more than five runs on five different occassions. It is no surprise that the team won all of those games behind some decent pitching. The individual stats are also staggering as Miguel Cabrera’s .330-plus average doesn’t account for his sub .200 average with runners in scoring position since mid-May.

It was very coincidental that they happened to be playing in Cleveland this weekend — since Indians teams of the ’90s were notorious for featuring .300-plus hitters across the board. If one of those Indians teams had decent pitching, Cleveland fans would not be talking about their World Series drought.

Could the offense wake up and become a strong compliment to the team’s low ERA? Of course, but that is dependent on Washburn coming onboard and making a stronger impact than what we saw from Edwin Jackson on Friday night. This team is built for success in the playoffs with some stellar pitchers who throw strikes, but that means they have to get there first.

With less than sixty games on the schedule, excuses have to subside and OBP has to increase. It is likely that Ordonez will be gone soon for monetary reasons and platooning will have to conclude at at-least one of the three present positions (RF, LF, SS).

There’s no doubt in my mind that Washburn will be a strong addition to the Tigers, but the only results that matter are the ones in the standings on October 4.