The Detroit Tigers have made some big announcements this week, some more important than others.
The first one general manager Dave Dombrowski made was the return of skipper Jim Leyland. I think this was a choice made by Leyland himself. I believe if the Tigers would have won the World Series, he would not have returned. I think he knows this team will be right back in the thick of things next season. However, there a couple of players on this year’s team who were told they are not coming back for the 2013 season.
The team announced that DH Delmon Young and closer Jose Valverde will not be returning to next year’s squad. I don’t think there is any surprise involved with these choices. Young has been pretty productive in the last two postseasons. However, Victor Martinez will be rejoining the team and the DH spot will be his. As for the closer situation, I feel like Phil Coke has earned a shot to make it his permanent spot. He pitched extremely well this postseason after Valverde had a terrible postseason. It will be intriguing to see where Young and Valverde end up next season. But another name in the mix for the closer spot is Bruce Rondon. Here is what Dombrowski said about Rondon’s chances.
“I would not discount Bruce Rondon in the competition for our closer role for next year,” Dombrowski said at his news conference on Tuesday. “I’m not saying he’s going to be our closer, but I do not discount him in that role.”
A few other moves that were made by the team this week include bringing back shortstop Jhonny Peralta and Octavio Dotel. Peralta played well in the postseason and it’s not a surprise to me the Tigers brought him back. As for Dotel, he pitched well most of the year and the postseason, so I’m glad he is going to be around for another season.
And last but not least, Don Kelly has become a free agent. Good luck to him.
I am not sure what the Tigers are going to do the rest of the off-season but I feel they are off to a decent start.