Team Strengths: The Tigers boast the maximum starting pitching depth in the branch outside the Indians. Matt Boyd and Jordan Zimmermann hovered around league average this past year, also Michael Fulmer is among the American League’s best when healthy. Tyson Ross is coming off a bounceback year when he revealed he can still be a fine starter. The No. 5 place is unsettled, but having four average or better starters sets Detroit apart.
Team Weaknesses: Underrated standout Nicholas Castellanos was Detroit’s only above-average hitter a year ago, even though Niko Goodrum and Christin Stewart revealed promise late in the season. With this lack of offensive talent, the Tigers scored the fifth-fewest runs in MLB and had the fourth-lowest OPS.
What They Did About It: The Tigers have embraced a rebuild, so few motions were made. Miguel Cabrera was in the middle of a bounceback year last year before a ruptured biceps tendon finished his year, so his return would buoy the offense somewhat. Still, even if that happens and Stewart and Goodrum show they are for real, there will be a good deal of holes at the Tigers lineup.
Final Outlook: The Tigers starting pitching makes a step ahead possible after consecutive 64-98 seasons, but another top-10 draft select seems probable in 2020.
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