Detroit Tigers: Chris Ilitch should be ashamed of himself

(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Tigers are an utter embarrassment, and Chris Ilitch should be ashamed of himself.

We all knew that the 2021 season would be a struggle, but none of us could have expected it would be this bad, did we?  Maybe some of you predicted this, but I entered the year trying to be optimistic, but that’s since come back to slap me right in the face.

The writing was on the wall early on this past offseason when Detroit Tigers general manager Al Avila refused to sign any free agent worth anything.  This while other willing spenders like Toronto went out and signed George Springer to a six-year deal, or the Dodgers went out and bolstered their starting rotation by landing reigning Cy Young winner Trevor Bauer.

You are likely snickering because I just mentioned two teams that had championship aspirations this past offseason.  Avila didn’t even sign valuable, cheap bridge players like Carlos Santana, who signed a two-year deal with the Royals, or Jake Odorizzi, who landed in Houston; both earn between $7 and $9 million per season.

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Instead, the lifeless Tigers made a huge splash in free agency, signing Robbie Grossman for $5 million per season. Then Avila waited until the free-agent catchers had all been picked over before adding Wilson Ramos.

And that sorry excuse of a bullpen?

The Tigers couldn’t be in on arms like Alex Colome, Justin Wilson, or Jake McGee?  Rather, the Tigers sign Derek Holland and Ian Krol, thanks Al.

Don’t forget, not that long ago, Avila led Tigers fans on like a donkey hoping to nab a carrot by stating the organization will be willing to spend when the time is right, then pointing to 2021.  Well, we’re here, and the theme this past offseason was patience.  Fans need to be patient with this young pitching staff and high-end prospects that are ALL not yet ready to contribute at the big-league level.

You’re going to tell me that Riley Greene or lower-type prospects like Daz Cameron or Parker Meadows can’t get a look in 2021 at the MLB level, but we’re suffered to watch JaCoby Jones, Victor Reyes, and Grossman, who are all hitting below .200 play every night?

This Detroit Tigers team is unwatchable.  This organization isn’t even trying to get better, and Chris Illitch should be ashamed of himself.

The Detroit Tigers are not the Pittsburgh Pirates; THEY’RE WORSE.

Imagine being in the American League but not having an everyday first baseman/designated hitter.  The 37-year old Miguel Cabrera is the best option at first base, and he’s 0 for his last 17 with 10 strikeouts.  Yet, Spencer Torkelson isn’t expected to get a look because we all know the Tigers will be squeezing out every second possible before starting his service time clock.

Per FanGraphs, the 8-21 Detorit Tigers deploy a lineup with a combined -2.7 Wins Above Replacement (WAR), meaning there is likely a Tripe-A team or two that could come up and perform at a similar level.

It’s a starting staff that must feel nauseous before taking the mound, knowing they need to be damn near perfect to give their team a chance to earn a victory.  It’s a staff led by its starters that has achieved a combined WAR of 1.1.

It gets worse folks, as a team, the Detroit Tigers carry an embarrassing league-worst -6.8 WAR; the next worst team happens to be the Pirates at -2.8.  The Tigers also own a league-worst run differential of -62; the Pirates again come in second last with a -26 mark.

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Tigers fans deserve answers.  Where is the man who signs the cheques?  Christopher Ilitch needs to come out of hiding and address this dumpster fire of a team.  If you are unwilling to rebuild this team with players worthy of playing major league baseball, sell the damn team.