What’s next for the Detroit Tigers?

Whats next for the Detroit Tigers?

Caleb Weiss, Staff

Before the 2022 season started, the Detroit Tigers were hyped as one of the teams that could make the playoffs.

Coming off a big season in which their record vastly improved, it seemed like the postseason wasn’t too far away for the Tigers. General manager, Al Avila, signing Chicago Cubs legend Javier Báez. Manager A.J Hinch revived his career after the Houston Astros scandal.

Akil Baddoo is recognized as one of the greatest rookies in the American League. Tigers owner, Chris Ilitch, even said, “The Detroit Tigers rebuild is 100% over.”

But it was all a mirage.

Javier Báez can’t stop striking out. Many fans called out Al Avila to be fired before he and the Tigers finally parted ways. A.J Hinch making very questionable management decisions. Akil Baddoo can’t even hit above the Mendoza line.

What should have been a breakthrough season, has become nothing but a disaster.

The Tigers currently sit on a 50-79 record, the worst in the division and the 2nd worst in the American League. The playoff ship sailed months ago and the general manager position is vacant after Al Avila was fired.

So, what do they do?

Well, first things first, they need to fix their hitting corps. They are almost completely incapable of hitting the ball in play. They’re either striking out, or they’re popping up in the infield. They have a -135 run differential, mostly due to how terrible the offense is. Miguel Cabrera, a veteran and the team’s only All-Star this season, will likely retire soon. Akil Baddoo needs to get back on track, he is currently hitting .186, which is .014 below the Mendoza line. Riley Greene and Spencer Torkelson are still developing, but promising hitters. But the number one thing that the Tigers should do, is finding a replacement for hitting coach, Scott Coolbaugh. He has been beyond atrocious and needs to be gone before the next season starts.

But there are some bright spots.

As mentioned before, Riley Greene and Spencer Torkelson are very promising. Both were the Tiger’s first-round draft picks in which they were both selected number five and number one overall respectively. Once they reach their full potential, they will become useful assets for the Tigers. The pitching rotation is really good; Tarik Skubal and Matt Manning are rounding out to be very good pitchers. Manning is still having growing pains, but it does seem like he is getting better. Other pitchers like Spencer Turnbull, Alex Lange, and Joe Jiménez also seem to be valuable prospects.

In their search for a brand new general manager, there are some good candidates that could fill the spot well. Executives such as Randy Flores, and Dana Brown, show the potential to be good GMs. As the director of scouting for the St. Louis Cardinals, Flores oversaw a trip to the NLCS in 2019, and a surprise playoff sneak just a year ago. Brown has also seen some success as the vice president of scouting who oversaw a World Series Championship in 2021 with the Braves and is considered one of the greatest scouts in the league.

While many people consider this season of Tigers baseball a complete failure, I don’t think that is entirely true. Al Avila was finally fired, the hitting corps will hopefully be fixed now that we realize that the coach is a problem, and Riley Greene and Spencer Torkelson have gotten some playing time in. While the Tigers are not in a good spot at the moment, fans will remain hopeful that the Tigers rebuild will actually, finally, be over, to which, I hope so too.