The 2012 season was very exciting for the Tigers. This team won the American League Pennant, but lost in the World Series to the San Francisco Giants. In 2012 Miguel Cabrera won the league MVP and hit for a triple crown for the first time since Cal Yastrzemski. Since losing the World the team has been waiting for revenge in 2013. The Tigers remain very similar keeping their core intact, but they added Torii Hunter, and Victor Martinez is back from injury. The 2013 Tigers have a strong chance to make the World Series again.
The Detroit Tigers projected lineup is a top five lineup in the MLB in 2013. From top to bottom every man can hit. There are no easy outs in the lineup. In 2012 this team had a top five on base percentage and ranked number six in batting average. At the top of the lineup they have outfielder Austin Jackson. Jackson is young and keeps improving every season. He batted .300 last season and hit for 16 home runs. He had 12 stolen bases, and this needs to increase to help his team produce runs. In 2013 Jackson can be a 20-20 guy at the top of the lineup. Next they have 37 year old outfielder Torii Hunter who they signed in free agency. Torii has been a very solid player during his long tenure in the MLB. Last season Hunter hit .313 with 16 home runs. Their number three batter is triple crown winner Miguel Cabrera. Cabrera had one of the greatest seasons in MLB history hitting .330 with 44 home runs, and 139 RBI’s. He is one of the best hitters in the game. Expect his numbers to decrease a little since statistics say it is improbably for him to win another triple crown. Batting cleanup is Prince Fielder who was their big free agent pick up in 2012. Last season he batted .313 with 30 Homeruns and 108 RBI’s. These numbers will remain relatively similar in 2013. Number five they have Victor Martinez who is coming off of injury. When Victor is healthy he is one of the best hitters in the game. Number six is Andy Dirks who batted .322 last season in 88 games. If Dirks can continue to have a high batting average he will see more playing time in 2013. Number seven is Jhonny Peralta who is a solid short stop. He has some power and will hit between 15- 20 homeruns. Number 8 is Alex Avila who is a young catcher. Last season he had 9 home runs with 48 RBI’s in 116 games. These numbers should increase as Avila gains more experience. Finally they have Omar Infante who can hit for average and steal bases at the bottom of the lineup. The Tigers have many hitters who hit for average and this can produce a massive amount of runs in 2013.
Detroit Tigers Projected Lineup
1. Austin Jackson CF
2. Tori Hunter RF
3. Miguel Cabrera 3B
4. Prince Fielder 1B
5. Victor Martinez DH
6. Andy Dirks LF
7. Jhonny Peralta SS
8. Alex Avila C
9. Omar Infante 2B
The starting rotation is extremely good, from top to bottom. The rotation has 6 guys who can start and spring training will determine the number 5 pitcher. At the top of the rotation they have Justin Verlander, who is one of the best pitchers in baseball. He was the CY Young and MVP winner in 2011, along with almost winning another CY Young last season; loosing slightly to David Price. Last season Verlander had a 2.64 ERA, and led the bigs in innings pitched, strike outs, and complete games. He averages a strike out an inning. In 2013 expect Verlander to have another CY young potential season. He might have 20 strike outs in a game, and multip-le no hitters or perfect games. Number two pitcher is Doug Fister. Fister had a 3.45 ERA last season, and continues to be very consistent from season to season. Number three they have Max Scherzer. Max has extremely good stuff. When Max is on he is one of the hardest pitchers to hit in the MLB. Max last season had a 3.74 ERA but in 2013 he will have a low 3 ERA. Number four pitcher is Anibal Sanchez who helped the Tigers down the stretch having a 2.15 ERA in his last 8 starts. Anibal had a 3.86 ERA last season and can lower this to a low 3 in 2013. Finally they have a pitching battle for the number 5 spot between Rick Porcello, and Drew Smyly. Both pitchers are very young being 24 and 23 years old. Both pitchers have tons of talent, and one can be traded for the Tigers to acquire a closer.
Tigers Starting Rotation
1. Justin Verlander
2. Doug Fister
3. Max Scherzer
4. Anibal Sanchez
5. Rick Porcello vs. Drew Smyly
The Tigers bullpen is very shaky, after losing closer Jose Valverde. Last season Valverde had a meltdown in the playoffs, but in the regular season he was 49 for 49 in save opportunities. These numbers will be very difficult to replace. As of now the Tigers are going with rookie Bruce Rondon as their closer. He is 23 years old and has tons of promise. This decision can be hit or miss and can cost the Tigers a World Series Championship. After Rondon they have three set up man. They have lefty specialist Phil Coke. They have ex star closer Octavio Dotel, who had a 3.5 ERA last season. They also have Joaquin Benoit who had a 3.6 ERA last season. Another guy they have in the pen is Brayan Villarrwal. Brayan is young and can have a shut down season. Last year he had a 2.63 ERA and should be able to produce similar numbers in 2013. The weakness of the Detroit Tigers is there bullpen. If you get to their pitching early you can beat this team. The relief pitching needs to improve for this team to have a chance of winning the World Series. Come playoff time you can’t count on your starters going all 9.
Detroit Tigers Season Schedule Break Down
The Detroit Tigers have a lot of games within the AL Central their division. This includes multiple games against the improving Kansas City Royals, Cleveland Indians, Chicago White Sox, and Minnesota Twins. Most of the teams in the AL Central have improved from 2012 and this division can produce two to three playoff teams. Every game within the AL central is very competitive and will continue to be in 2013. The Tigers in interleague play 2013 play the NL East. This includes games against the New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, Atlanta Braves, Washington Nationals, and Miami Marlins. The NL East is one of the better divisions in baseball so these will be tough games. They also play a home and away series late in May vs. the improved Pittsburgh Pirates.
Tigers Key Additions
Torii Hunter RF
Victor Martinez DH (returns from injury)
Brayan Pena C
Delmon Young OF
Jose Valverde RHP
Gerald Laird C
The 2012 season was extremely exciting for Tigers fans. They reached the 2012 World Series, and saw Miguel Cabrera win the triple crown. In 2013 the Tigers have enough talent to win the World Series. They have tons of hitting, and a solid pitching staff. The only thing holding the Tigers back is they don’t have a closer. They have multiple set up men but no closer. This could affect the team in the playoffs. Even without a closer the Tigers are still a top two team in the AL. In 2013 the Tigers will lose in the American League Championship series to either the Los Angeles Angels or the New York Yankees.
Detroit Tigers Season Schedule 2013
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