Okay, Tigers. You have our attention.
7-3 in their last ten games and 20-15 dating back to May 28th. A far cry from May 7th when they were 15 games sub .500.
They have momentum.
Enough so where a decision must be made before the July 31st trade deadline. Albeit an easy one.
Currently, the Tigers boast a record 39-46, putting them 10.5 games out of the lead and 9.5 games out of a Wild Card spot. So yes they have momentum, not enough to turn them into buyers, unfortunately. But they DO have enough to turn current pieces into quality future assets, which they should strongly consider.
Schoop has been on a rampant tear, hitting .343 for June with ten big johnsons. At age 29, it’s not likely he will be included in the Tigers five-year plan, and as a free agent after this season, he could draw a handsome return from a contender.
The Brewers could be very interested in reuniting with Schoop, plugging him at first base where they desperately need some production. The Tigers may be overly ambitious in requesting any of the Brewers top hitting prospects such as Garrett Mitchell or Brice Turang, but additional bats are needed.
Specifically, bats that are ready in the next few seasons, if not now.
Boston is also starving for production at first base. And with the best record in the American League, adding even an average bat would greatly bolster their lineup. 22-year-old Jeter Downs would check all the necessary boxes for the Tigers and would be ready to contribute immediately if needed. However, yes, another overly ambitious request.
If Boston gets desperate, we have them throw in Blaze Jordan and the Tigers could rob the Red Sox blind of any incredible future marketing that Manfred would eventually ruin.
Mazara’s abysmal production and bad defense would be more about opening a spot up in the lineup for somebody that would benefit the Tigers more. However, he is still a lefty bat with incredible power. Any team making a move on him would simply be looking at a pinch-hit role or a platoon spot.
So far it’s worked out for the Dodgers and Pujols. He’s playing like he’s 41 again.
Think Astros or Rays in this scenario.
But If They Were Buyers…
Now just because we can, we are going to say the Tigers erupt in July, The White Sox implode, and Terry Francona has an existential crisis, plugging himself in at shortstop every game.
Suddenly, the Tigers are only three games back.
It will be tough to make moves while maintaining most of their future pieces, but let’s try it anyway.
Trevor Story is set to be a free agent and would provide a steady upgrade both defensively and offensively. It’s not likely the Rockies will trade him, especially after the Arenado debacle, but they are on the verge of another overhaul.
Joey Gallo would play the role that Nomar Mazara was expected to. If the Tigers wished to go with more seasoned hands in the outfield, Gallo would fill in nicely, and at a much lower cost than the next two.
If for some reason the Cubs find themselves in a selling position, teams will be hounding Jed Hoyer about Kris Bryant and Javier Baez. Detroit would most likely have to part with two of their top prospects for the Cubs to even return their phone calls.
They would have a chance at resigning one of the two for a longer deal, signifying the Tigers will officially be making their push for the next window.
As long as the Tigers keep winning, they will have the leverage.