It has only been about four months since Al Avila took over as the Detroit Tigers' general manager, so we still don't have much of a track record to judge him by. Still, we like to periodically take the pulse of our readers, and we have a lot more to go on now than we did the last time a poll was conducted.
In particular, a pair of actual trades that will do more than plug a hole for a month. The Tigers acquired Francisco Rodriguez (a.k.a. K-Rod) and Cameron Maybin this month, shoring up weak bullpen and outfield units. While these weren't the big splash moves Dave Dombrowski was known for (hey, there's still plenty of time for that) they look like savvy deals that improve the team now, without gambling much of the future. But there is still much to do.
Let's just tack those new moves onto the list we started in the last poll. As Avila executes bigger transactions we'll remove some of the less impactful items, but for now we'll leave it as-is.
|20-Aug||Tigers traded for Randy Wolf from the Toronto Blue Jays for cash considerations.||Anibal Sanchez and Daniel Norris placed on the disabled list.|
|8-Sep||Tigers designated Daniel Fields for assignment, recalled Josh Wilson.||The Milwaukee Brewers claimed Fields off of waivers.|
|22-Sep||Bruce Rondon sent home for the remainder of the season.||Rondon was disciplined for a lack of effort.|
|26-Sep||Tigers announced they would be retaining Brad Ausmus and his coaching staff for the 2016 season.||News leaked on September 10th that Ausmus would be fired at season's end.|
|29-Oct||Tigers name Rich Dubee the new pitching coach.||Former pitching coach Jeff Jones announced his retirement after the season.|
|9-Nov||Tigers designated Guido Knudson for assignment.||The Pittsburgh Pirates claimed Knudson off of waivers.|
|18-Nov||Tigers traded for Francisco Rodriguez from the Milwaukee Brewers for Javier Betancourt||The teams also exchanged players to be named later.|
|20-Nov||Tigers traded for Cameron Maybin from the Atlanta Braves for Ian Krol and Gabe Speier.||Krol was acquired in the infamous Doug Fister trade, and Speier was included in the Yoenis Cespedes trade.|
Avila has also made some wholesale additions to his scouting staff, and expanded the Tigers' analytics department. Jay Sartori was hired as Senior Director of Baseball Operations and Analytics, and several new analysts were added with the aim of providing players and coaches with as much data as they desire. These moves follow up on statements Avila had made regarding the team's use of analytics lagging behind other organizations, and his intent to remedy that.
It's still not much to go on, but at least it's something. At this juncture, do you feel confident in Avila's ability to build a contending team in 2016 and beyond?