Believe it or not, the trade deadline is next month. Pretty soon, the deals will be flying. The Tigers have several team weaknesses that noted swindler Dave Dombrowski could look to upgrade. The upgrades we may see are at:
- Left Field
As the title indicates, I thought I'd look at an under-the-radar trade possibility for the Tigers: trading for a left-handed outfielder. Andy Dirks has not been able to replicate his breakout 2012 performance, with just a .677 OPS on June 5. Dombrowski has always looked upon prospects as the unsure things they are, always willing to trade one for MLB talent. Does this mean he could block the development of Garcia and Castellanos for a year in favor of a proven veteran? I think he could, subsequently turning Dirks into a super-sub outfielder. Otherwise, Dombrowski could deal for a left-handed backup, which would push bane of everyone's existence Don Kelly off of the roster.
Disclaimer: My last trade idea was not the best. Now, let's get into it.
David DeJesus- DeJesus currently mans center field for the Cubs. This name would have actually made sense two weeks ago to replace Austin Jackson. Still, he can man all three outfield positions at a decent level. His OPS's the last three years: .827, .698, and .753. He's following that up with another consistent performance this year. Much like Jhonny Peralta in 2010, DeJesus is only guaranteed to the end of the year, with an option for 2014 that can easily be declined if Garcia or Castellanos prove themselves ready to take over in The Show.
Will Venable- Isn't every team's dream trade for Will Venable? I can imagine the fans would get behind this. In all seriousness, Venable splits time between center and right for San Diego, though he has played all outfield positions in the past. He's basically the average .250/.320/.400 guy that we'd all love from our bench. Currently, Venable is hitting just .224, but that seems to be mainly bad BABIP luck. Will is still under team control through 2015 as a Super Two player, making him little hassle to part with when needed.
Raul Ibanez- Remember all the damage that Ibanez inflicted with the Yankees last postseason? It was definitely an anomaly, but digging into the stats, Ibanez is still a pretty good hitter. He's putting up an odd .233/.273/.514 slash line so far in 2013. His power surge won't last, but some hits will start falling in for him as well. Ibanez is quite Delmonesque in the outfield. This is why he would be on the team as a power bat off the bench, or just start to spell Hunter against a tough right-handed pitcher. He's a free agent after this season.
The options for a left-handed outfielder are more sparse than I imagined. Most teams are still in a position where they can hold out the hope for a Baltimore-like run. The options will become more available as the deadline approaches, Dombrowski will have the players there for the taking if he wishes.
Wow, I made it through the whole thing without a Porcello for Braun joke!