The Detroit Tigers, like the entirety of the league, is in a lull right now amid the lockout. As it rages on, there is not much happening, and the Tigers are just waiting for things to get back to normal so that they can continue to prepare for the 2022 season.
This offseason, the Detroit Tigers went out and grabbed shortstop Javier Báez on a six-year, $140 million contract. While they may have avoided signing Carlos Correa, who was seemingly the fan-favorite, he will significantly better the Tigers lineup.
However, when it comes to Báez and the Tigers lineup, there’s a question begging to be asked. Where is Báez going to bat on the daily for the Tigers when the 2022 season finally does roll around?
It’s early to speculate, and the lineup card will likely change a lot throughout the season, but when the 2022 season finally arrives, whenever that may be, Báez is going to need somewhere to hit.
Detroit Tigers should hit Javier Báez in the two or three-hole in 2022.
The bottom line for the Detroit Tigers is that they need to boost run production the best way possible. Eventually, many would like to think that Spencer Torkelson and Riley Greene will populate the top of the lineup.
But for the time being, the Tigers will see players like Báez and others like Robbie Grossman and Jonathan Schoop be at the height of run-production.
For this very reason, I’d like to see Báez in the two-hole or three-spot in the lineup early on. Some predictions have him being stationed fourth in the lineup. But, I’d like to see Báez near the top of the lineup.
There are some factors to consider, such as where Akil Baddoo will slot in, where Robbie Grossman will be, and also players like Jeimer Candelario will likely be near the top of the lineup. But Báez makes sense in the three-spot, in my opinion.
Ideally, seeing Grossman in the leadoff spot with Baddoo batting second, I’d prefer Báez third in the lineup, leaving room for Cabrera, Candelario, or Schoop behind him in the four, five, and six spots in whatever order the Tigers opt to hit them.
Báez will drastically improve the Tigers lineup and boost run production; the biggest hangup will be strikeouts. But it seems like he will remain best suited to hit third in most situations.
While lefty/righty and matchups will play a role in determining what the lineup looks like. If I were to craft a general Tigers lineup, I’d like to see Báez in the three spot. But, with 2022 baseball far from being on the horizon due to the lockout, there will be plenty of time for my opinion to change as well as many others.