Detroit Tigers: 3 Free Agents left to target before it’s to late

Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
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Detroit Tigers
(Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images) /

Alex Avila

For papa Avila, this would be a very justifiable signing at this point, considering the Detroit Tigers could use a left-handed hitter, and if that comes from the catching position, even better. Also, for a parent to have the opportunity to sign their child to a professional contract can only be a dream come true.

For Alex Avila, the third time is a charm, right?

Avila spent his first seven MLB seasons with the Detroit Tigers during their latest ‘glory years’ stretch as they often contended for the American League pennant and World Series.

Avila would eventually sign a one-year deal with the Chicago White Sox before returning to the Detroit Tigers the following season before being moved by his father back to Chicago, but this time, the Cubs along with left-handed reliever Justin Wilson in exchange for Jeimer Candelario and Isaac Paredes.  That was a win for Al Avila; both players acquired are likely to start the 2021 season as regulars in the Detroit Tigers lineup.

As mentioned earlier in this article, the Detroit Tigers don’t exactly have a stable option at the catching position to start the 2021 season.  As it stands, it has a revolving-door feel to it between Greiner,  Garneau, Haase, and Rogers.

I understand Avila can’t hit a lick these days, but the soon-to-be 34-year old catcher continues to stash a solid on-base percentage.  Here is the line Avila has stashed over the past three seasons combined; .184/.328/.349.  This is a 166 game sample, and during this time, Avila has amassed 17 home runs, 46 runs batted in while drawing 88 walks but striking out 180 times.

Avila will be widely valuable to the young Tigers’ pitching staff working behind the plate.

The Detroit Tigers seriously need to consider signing one of the few remaining catchers to a one-year deal.  If not Avila, then Wilson Ramos, Matt Wieters, Tyler Flowers, or a reunion with Austin Romine.

The top fish in J.T. Realmuto remains on the market, but the Detroit Tigers are not expected to be interested in paying upwards of $18-22 million per season for a player at this point in what is expected to be a lengthy rebuild.