The Detroit Tigers have made some roster moves this offseason that have changed the scope of the team’s future behind the dish. The Tigers have had some struggles in recent years when it comes to catchers and finding reliable options.
However, the Detroit Tigers saw Eric Haase come into his own and really find a way to be an impactful piece of the team’s lineup day in and day out. By the end of the season, it was commonplace to have Haase in the lineup daily.
He found some serious success and was able to anchor down the team’s duties behind the dish when needed. By the end of the season, he had logged 66 games behind the plate, 22 in the outfield, and 11 as the Tigers designated hitter.
Then this offseason, the Tigers went out and acquired Tucker Barnhart in a trade with the Cincinnati Reds. Barnhart is going to take over the everyday backstop role for the most part, but obviously, Haase is still going to be a stellar option behind the plate.
Given the Detroit Tigers’ moves, Eric Haase will have a new role in 2022.
Haase has demonstrated the ability to play in the outfield and could be another option for them. While the Tigers are seemingly going to have a crowded outfield at times, between time in left field and some fill-in days behind the dish, the Tigers could transition Haase to a more versatile role.
Barnhart’s abilities behind the dish are going to make a clear difference for the Tigers, so Haase is going to have to find new ways to contribute. It seems like being the versatile option for the Tigers is going to be his way to do so.
He belongs in the lineup; that’s been proven. His .231/.286/.459 slash line with 22 home runs and 61 RBI over 98 games with the Tigers speak to his value to the lineup. Whether as a catcher, outfielder, or designated hitter, he will find a way.
The Tigers even trotted him out at first base one time as well. Sending him out there again and getting him in the lineup that way may not be the worst thing in the world. Adding that to his positional versatility just allows another spot for Haase to get put back in the lineup.
After Haase’s breakout summer of 2021, it’s hard to think the Tigers are going to decrease his role severely. He’s going to have a spot somewhere; the question is just where he will be in the lineup.