It has officially been January for (this is an estimate) six years. But the baseball season, the crack of the bat, the roar of the crowd, and -- most importantly -- the voices of Dan Dickerson, Jim Price, Mario Impemba, and Rod Allen broadcasting the games is just around the corner. Speaking of Dan Dickerson, be sure to catch the live Bless You Boys podcast on January 17 at 10:00 a.m. (EST), when Dan will be joining me on the show to talk about the upcoming Tigers season.
Do we have news? Yes, we have news.
Spoiler alert: Dave Dombrowski is the only one who can answer that question, and according to this article, his answer is "This is the time of year you just never know." Oh, Dave, you sweet talker! (Fair warning: this article includes a -25 point score for reminding us of the 2014 ALDS.)
This is glorious news. The article also includes a spring training broadcast schedule, so make sure you write those dates down. And hey, guess which MLB team the Tigers will be facing first, on March 3? If you said, "the team that swept them out of the ALDS," subtract another 25 points from your score for bringing up the 2014 ALDS. Also, that's the right answer.
I realize that this isn't exactly "breaking news," since the post date on this article is December 19, but apparently I missed it the first time around, and how am I not supposed to share this awesome trip down memory lane? We miss you already, Fred.
This article has my 100% approval, mostly because of this: "spending more money on one player will not solve the Tigers’ issues ... the starting pitching wasn’t the reason why the Tigers were swept from the playoffs last year. The bullpen was." Bottom line: if Max Scherzer would sign a three-year contract, I'd say go for it. Any more than that, forget it. Too many long-term contracts will make for a basement-dwelling team in about four years.
Yes, yes, ALRIGHT, I realize that this article is also nearly a month old. Still, I missed it the first time around, so here it is. I'm still not convinced that Cespedes is really a replacement for Hunter in terms of offense. Cespedes hit for slightly more power in 2014, but he also struck out more and got on base less than Hunter did.
This article specifically highlights Cespedes's .260 average, 36 doubles, six triples, 22 home runs, and 100 RBIs last year. Compare that to Hunter's .286 average, 33 doubles, two triples, 17 home runs, and 83 RBIs. Then also be aware of Hunter's .319 on-base percentage, compared to Cespedes's .301 OBP. And don't forget Hunter's 15.2 percent strikeout rate, compared to Cespedes's 22.5 percent strikeout rate.
But, hey, if Brad Ausmus says that Cespedes adequately replaces Hunter's offense, who am I to split hairs?
Don't forget to tune in for this Saturday's live podcast. I'll be chatting with the guys who run the Cespedes Family BBQ web site, so there will be plenty more "Yo Yo Bomb" conversation on the horizon.