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How would your opening day line-up look?

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Postby cmchampa2 » Sat Feb 11, 2006 1:33 am

Does putting a young guy at the bottom of the order to help him develope ever work? What, there's no pressure down there? And besides that, the minors (not the 9 hole) are a good place for young guys to develope without too much pressure. How about Chris Shelton hitting 8 and Granderson 9, this way they won't feel bad while they're getting better. Oh, and a year in middle relief and clean-up duty for Verlander might make the transition easier.

Granderson may not walk enough to be a leadoff hitter, but c'mon, he's old enough.

There's plenty of room on the Nook Logan bandwagon. More Nook!
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Postby mcqfesijiba » Sat Feb 11, 2006 9:28 am

cmchampa2 wrote:Does putting a young guy at the bottom of the order to help him develope ever work? What, there's no pressure down there? And besides that, the minors (not the 9 hole) are a good place for young guys to develope without too much pressure. How about Chris Shelton hitting 8 and Granderson 9, this way they won't feel bad while they're getting better. Oh, and a year in middle relief and clean-up duty for Verlander might make the transition easier.

Granderson may not walk enough to be a leadoff hitter, but c'mon, he's old enough.

There's plenty of room on the Nook Logan bandwagon. More Nook!
You're missing the point. Granderson is not a leadoff type. Being fast does not = good leadoff hitter. I see him as more of being somewhere near the middle of the order in the future due to his underrated power. On top of that, he had OBP problems last year in his short stint with the Tigers. He needs to prove himself as SP around the league adjust to him before throwing him into a spot as important as leadoff, and this is very important considering his high strikeout tendencies in Toledo. I just cannot buy into the idea that "Granderson is fast, therefore he must leadoff". And with other solid (even if unspectacular) options available for leadoff, why push our luck? Let's see some results first.

If anything, I see Granderson batting 9th as a sign of how potent the everyday lineup is capable of being. I can think a fair number of lineups around the league where he might be closer to the middle of the order (maybe 6th or 7th) than he will be here in his first year.
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Postby moochman » Sat Feb 11, 2006 11:39 am

Not only doesn't Granderson have the contact type swing you'd like to have as you lead-off batter, but he also doesn't utilize his speed very well. I think he also has a little more pop than you'd want to waste at the top of you order.

Mcq, Tram said the he wanted the Tigers to develop their players the same at every level, so why do we still see our minors come to the show while having such poor fundamentals? I mean they don't run bases well, steal bases well, don't bunt well, or have very good approaches at the plate. I this something that is being adressed under Chadd's watch? Really makes me mad.
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Postby cmchampa2 » Sun Feb 12, 2006 1:06 am

moochman wrote:Mcq, Tram said the he wanted the Tigers to develop their players the same at every level, so why do we still see our minors come to the show while having such poor fundamentals? I mean they don't run bases well, steal bases well, don't bunt well, or have very good approaches at the plate. I this something that is being adressed under Chadd's watch? Really makes me mad.


Oh God, yes. And you left out pitchers that have control issues, underdeveloped secondary pitches, and no pickoff move.

You guys sold me on the Granderson issue. Count me in the group that wants him at the bottom of the lineup.

More Nook!
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Postby mcqfesijiba » Mon Feb 13, 2006 1:29 pm

moochman wrote:Mcq, Tram said the he wanted the Tigers to develop their players the same at every level, so why do we still see our minors come to the show while having such poor fundamentals? I mean they don't run bases well, steal bases well, don't bunt well, or have very good approaches at the plate. I this something that is being adressed under Chadd's watch? Really makes me mad.
They don't call bunting a lost art in baseball for nothing. It's probably easier to notice it when watching your own team, but I watch some nationally televised games on ESPN every year (and it always seems it's either the Red Sox or Yankees are on every other day on ESPN during the season) and watching the fundamentals of those teams is pitiful, especially the Yankees and the money they pay those players.

I think the Tigers' approach has always been relatively opposite of the Oakland A's. Draft too many raw, but talented players early and focus on the slightly riskier pitching versus hitting. I think the way they worked with Verlander and Zumaya to improve their deliveries+command and drafting some hitters that already possess good plate discipline in the 2005 draft was a step in the right direction.

Wow, it's amazing when you consider that Granderson struck out a combined 172 times in 2005 between AAA and Detroit. I also don't understand why they only allowed him to attempt 2 SBs as a Tiger. 22 SBs/28 attempts in AAA isn't bad at all and I think maybe they should've given themselves a better look at him as a basestealer.
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Postby moochman » Mon Feb 13, 2006 6:48 pm

You'd think that with as little as they had to play for that letting Granderson steal away would have aided his development. Maybe Leyland will let him run more. Don't recall what his game day coaching philosophy is.

And with the Tiges, it seems like they are so poor in their fundamentals that it isn't unusual to see players throwing to the wrong bases, or missing the cut-off man. Pathetic baserunning and poor plate discipline. Just hope the new crew can turn that around.
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Postby fraquar » Tue Feb 21, 2006 9:41 pm

moochman wrote:...Tram said the he wanted the Tigers to develop their players the same at every level, so why do we still see our minors come to the show while having such poor fundamentals? I mean they don't run bases well, steal bases well, don't bunt well, or have very good approaches at the plate. I this something that is being adressed under Chadd's watch? Really makes me mad.


Actually, this is something that has to start at the top. The players in the system have to know what is expected of them when the time comes to be called up (whether in a pinch or for good). The Minor League coaching staffs need to be focusing on those skill sets the Major League team demands - much like the A's organization. Whenever we fail to move a runner to get him into scoring position (especially with lower order hitters) that sends the message throughout the system that we prefer to swing away to drive in the run - hence why waste time on things like hitting behind the runner or bunting to move the runner.

Watching Tiger games the last 5 years we see exactly what the prospects see - that all you really have to do is swing away to make it to the show because we do little else but that.

Until the ML club develops some sense of playing style - where the Minor League coaches can put emphasis on the skill sets needed to succeed at the ML level the Minor League coaches are left in the dark. Not knowing which skill sets to put their limited time and resources into coaching their players. The Minor Leaguers know full well they aren't going to waste time learning skills they will never be asked to use under the current state of affairs - at the expense of getting to the show. Under the status quo they will be "swinging away" - at anything that moves.
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Postby moochman » Wed Feb 22, 2006 11:02 am

I don't agree. If that is the case then you end up with a self-perpetuating conundrum without possible resolution. The lower minor league talent has to have the fundamentals drilled into them from the very start. They can then carry these building blocks into the pros, where if the manager should emphasize them the player will execute basic baseball plays as if he were doing it all his life.

Problem is that Tram was unable to get the support needed to instill these core values into our players, just as so many before him. The dirty little secret of the Tigers was that they were very lazy when it came to their minor league system. Traveling coaches, no standard philosophy, and incompetent coaches have been a hallmark of the Tigers. We pay for this every season as we see players who don't have the basics and who are so poorly coached that they never develop to reach their potential.

Hopefully this is changing, but only more time will tell. But one thing is for sure: the change must come from within.
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Postby mcqfesijiba » Wed Feb 22, 2006 1:17 pm

I think the best way to get more fundamentally sound players at the MLB level is to draft more players like that in the first place. See: the Oakland A's. Do they magically infuse excellent plate discipline into their players? No, they are drafted that way, while the team doesn't hurt their progress. I am not a big fan of "Moneyball" or overly reliant on sabermetrics, but getting at least some amount of those players with skill sets like that is a good thing.

I've read up a bit on David Chadd and he supposedly isn't a big sabermetrics guy and had some disagreements with the Red Sox GM who was a bit of a sabermetrics fan, but strangely enough, outside of Cameron Maybin, I think the Tigers had a 2005 draft that looks a little bit Oakland A's-like to me, but with a nice focus on offense instead of pitching. In the past, too many high schoolers drafted early and probably too much focus on the great risk that is pitching. In hindsight, many of the Tigers' early picks in the past were bad, but not so bad at the time. Drafting is far from an exact science, however, there were usually warning signs that teams like Oakland would look for when scouting players. Look at free agent acquisitions and trades all you want, but few teams succeed without the minor leagues producing impact players. The Tigers are obviously no different.
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Postby Dannomyte » Wed Feb 22, 2006 8:29 pm

From Danny Knobler at http://www.mlive.com/tigers/weblog/

1. Leyland said he plans to lead off either Granderson or Logan, whoever wins the center field job. I wonder if that will last. Neither one did all that well in limited time as the leadoff man last year. But there is no perfect leadoff guy on this club.


I guess that settles the lead-off debate. For now atleast!
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