Impressions of the 2012 Detroit Tigers after their first series


The really good news is there is a lot to be hopeful about. The somewhat bad news is this team already has some pretty serious issues that will need to be dealt with sooner rather than later. Sure, in Major League Baseball every team wins 55 games, loses 55 games and what happens in those other 52 games is what really matters. However, if the issues for the Tigers are allowed to fester than this season may come of the rails. That seems kind of silly to say for a team that is 3-0, but my steadfast rule is wins losses and the standings don’t matter much till the ivy at Wrigley Field is green. Given the mild winter in the mid west that may have already come to be.

Let us start with the good news. Austin Jackson’s new approach at the plate has him off to a very hot start. He is batting over .500 and has come up with key hits in key situations. On top of that he is the Tigers table setter and we saw Sunday how important that role actually is. Miguel Cabrera is also off to a hot start and already has three home runs and eight RBI. Prince Fielder has also gotten off to a hot start, and none of my concerns lay with the offense of this team.

That of course brings us to the pitching staff. Doug Fister is already on the DL. Max Scherzer looked terrible yesterday, and the Tigers have few in house remedies to alleviate either situation. It now seems that the competition for the fifth starter spot was not won, but lost by many of the original competitors. It is not an immediate concern, but if Fister misses significant time and Scherzer continues to struggle this season may begin to circle the drain.

It is probably way to early to panic, or to go out and sign Roy Oswalt. But given the fact that Manger Jim Leyland publically said he has no idea who will start for this team, beyond Justin Verlander and Rick Porcello, does not exactly give the fan base much confidence. Sure the offense is great and it seems on most days it can rescue the pitching staff, but that is not a great recipe for a World Series title.

For me merely winning the AL central is no longer the goal, I want a World Series title and the best way to do that is to have a great pitching staff. This staff could be great, but they have some major hurdles to get over sooner rather than later.