As the season is winding down, there have been few things to talk about regarding the Tigers as they have been on a horrendous slump (outside of the recent four game winning streak they are currently on). With that in mind, a little scope into what will occur in the offseason for this team may have become a little clearer, as pitcher AJ Burnett, currently of the Florida Marlins, has expressed his disinterest in returning to the Fish next season. Soon afterwards, he was asked to go ahead and leave the team prior to the end of the season:
Shortly before the Marlins played the Nationals on Monday night, Burnett was called into manager Jack McKeon's office. With general manager Larry Beinfest and assistant general manager Mike Hill present, the 28-year-old was told he no longer was wanted by the club.
"He has left the team," said Beinfest. "He is not suspended. He continues to be paid. He was told prior to the game."
So, with this in mind, the Tigers will more than likely go after the free agent pitcher. This has been a rumor that has been spoken amongst Tigers fans, and it looks like it will become a reality. While many of the bigger market teams (Boston & Baltimore for example) will try to lure Burnett, the Tigers will have an advantage over these teams, general manager Dave Dombrowski. Dombrowski brought Burnett to Florida while he was GM there, and was in the organization as AJ made his major league debut. Tigers catcher Pudge Rodriguez is also a former teammate of Burnett, as they were paired up on Florida's 2003 world championship club.
In other Tigers news:
- The Tigers came to an agreement to sign their first round draft pick Cameron Maybin. There were many signs that Maybin was going to break off negotiations and enroll at a junior college to play baseball this upcoming season. He will be reporting to instructional league shortly.
- There is an interesting article by John Lowe of the Free Press regarding whether or not Trammell will be back as manager next season. Check it out.