The Detroit Tigers won 366 games between 2011 and 2014, which is 91.5 wins per season and a .565 winning percentage. They won four consecutive AL Central crowns.
They never won it all, of course. The 2014 Tigers lost in the ALDS, the 2011 and 2013 Tigers lost in the ALCS, and the 2012 Tigers lost the World Series. But they were formidable. They were talented. They were scary. And while it may seem like a distant memory now, they came about as close to a dynasty as any team without a single ring to show for their troubles can get.
On the 27th episode of the DFA podcast, Bryan and R.J. discuss the Tigers' flash teardown and their deals of Justin Verlander to the Astros and Justin Upton to the Angels. Plus, the other little moves that made our second deadline so exciting, including Mike Leake to the Mariners, Brandon Phillips to the Angels, and more.
Welcome back to the DFA podcast! Hosts Bryan Grosnick (Baseball Prospectus) and R.J. Anderson (CBS Sports), plus producer Shawn Brody (Beyond the Box Score, BP Mets), are talking about all the transactions and roster moves that make MLB go. From trades and signings to callups and disabled list stints, DFA is here to provide analysis and commentary on all things baseball.
Will the Tigers' struggles lead to another regime change? And if so, which type will it be?
It’s a lost season for the Tigers—something they could scarcely afford, but an easy thing to have seen coming, really. When they jettisoned longtime general manager Dave Dombrowski, the Tigers also seem to have thrown out whatever larger sense of direction they might have previously had. The roster Dombrowski left behind was, of course, an expensive, aged, and rigid one, but nothing Al Avila (Dombrowski’s lieutenant-turned-successor) has done over the last two-plus years has amended that, and to whatever extent that roster also held the promise of one or two more honest shots at a postseason berth, Avila has squandered those.
Last offseason, Avila took the half measure of trading Cameron Maybin in order to limit the team’s budgetary strain, but then (perhaps hamstrung by ownership, or perhaps out of a simple inability to find the right deals) went no further down the path of rebuilding. Crucially, he also didn’t load the team up with any significant reinforcements. It was a tough winter of needle-threading, with the health of then-owner Mike Illitch so obviously in decline and the countdown clock on Illitch’s Tigers dynasty dreams ticking down, so perhaps it’s understandable that Avila mostly missed his chances to guide the team out of mediocrity (in either direction), but fail he did.
Suspensions are coming and the Yankees may be very short-handed in their playoff push.
Many people can name two songs by the band Fastball. I can name somewhere nearer a dozen. Too slow on the uptake to just start loading up on electronic music downloads in high school, I bought a whole bunch of CDs just to get my hands on a couple of songs. I wanted “The Way,” so I bought Fastball’s whole greatest hits album.
Buried somewhere in there is a song called “Are You Ready for the Fallout?”, which I think ended up on the soundtrack to Varsity Blues. It's not a good song, but at this moment, it could be dancing through the heads of Yankees fans (of some very specific age). It's sung to an unnamed friend whom the singer believes is destroying themselves by going through life with way too much bile on their tongue and too many scrapes on their knuckles.
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Not gonna tour with Trent Reznor. Third of three, bottom of the bill. You can’t pay me to make that kind of music. Not gonna swallow that pill.
There’s a Stewart Lee bit in one of his recent stand-up specials that has always stuck with me. Lee’s an Edinburgh Fringe Festival stalwart, the British version of the comedian’s comedian. His persona is a smug intellectual—only partially a put-on for the stage—at best maintaining a chilly detente with his audience, but usually he descends into haranguing, mocking, or expressing his sincere disappointment in them.
It’s that time of year. The time when grown men hug each other to say goodbye after five months together. It’s also the time when refresh buttons are mashed on Twitter trying to catch the news of whatever trade is about to happen. It’s all so exciting. And here at BP, we like to get into the spirit of the season, too. It’s become an annual tradition to play the BP Trade Game, where we put on disguises that make us look like general managers, and pretend to trade for someone.
Today, we present the first entry in that series where we try to trade J.D. Martinez from the Tigers to a team looking for a rental bat. And, as sometimes happens with these, real life scooped us. I guess we shouldn’t feel too bad. On July 28, the Tigers are having a “Game of Thrones” night at Comerica Park, featuring a bobblehead of J.D. Martinez sitting on the throne.
On the 17th episode of the DFA Podcast, Bryan, special guest Ben Diamond, and Shawn Brody discuss three big deals that are helping shape the 2017 playoff push. The Yankees pick up three pieces, the Nationals grab two, and the Diamondbacks just get one; how did each team do?
It's Baseball Prospectus's newest podcast: DFA! Host Bryan Grosnick (Baseball Prospectus), co-host R.J. Anderson (CBS Sports), and producer Shawn Brody (Beyond the Box Score, BP Mets) are talking about all the transactions and roster moves that make MLB go. From trades and signings to callups and disabled list stints, DFA is here to provide analysis and commentary on all things baseball.
Is bunting to break up a no-hitter only controversial because of how our brains work?
The date is June 21, and Justin Verlander has just struck out Mitch Haniger for the first out of the fifth inning. It was his 10th strikeout of the game, and if it wasn’t vintage Verlander that’s only because he didn’t throw his (once) devastating changeup, instead relying on a curveball with more drop than a Tiesto banger to play off his riding, mid-90s heater.