With the Tigers being eliminated too early and easily I figured it necessary to move on to more uplifting things. I don't wanna hear about free agency. I don't wanna talk about the crappy bullpen. I don't even really want to root for Kansas City. I want to live in a dream world where the all-time Tiger greats play together on a dominating team that wins 135 games and does that so handily that they can hit Nelson Cruz in the back every time he steps to the plate.
So, I've come out of my blogging retirement to make up my team. The starting lineup comes out today. The bench and pitchers will come soon. I want to win so I've got no room for my favorites. Also, my team is based STRICTLY on their work with the Tigers. If they didn't do it for the Tigers, it doesn't count. They shoulda worked a little harder to stay in Motown I guess. Longevity counts as well. (You hear that VMart and Max?)
1. Ty Cobb (1905-1926) CF - I'm putting Ty and his .434 OBP in the lead off spot. Great speed. Ideal lead off hitter. Easiest spot in the order to fill, although he's actually the career leader in Tiger RBI's.
2. Charlie Gehringer (1924-1942) 2B - I was originally a bit afraid of hitting to lefties in a row at the top of the order, but then I decided that it's Charlie freakin' Gehringer. Good speed. Handles the bat well. Struck out 817 times less than Brandon Inge in 4234 more Tiger at bats. And, no Inge is not on my team.
3. Al Kaline (1953-1974) RF - Mr. Tiger gets to hit in the 3 hole. Could have gone a couple of ways here, but Kaline still has 147 more Tiger HR's than Miggy and 93 more than Greenberg.
4. Hank Greenberg (1930-1946) 1B - Hammerin' Hank will hit cleanup with his 1.028 career Tiger OPS. Hank is part of a Tiger 1B crew that is very impressive. The bench battle to get on the team from the first base slot was fierce. Which brings me to...
5. Miguel Cabrera (2008-Present) 3B - I suppose I take a little hit defensively by having Miggy play third, but I need him and Hank in the lineup. Greenberg played a little outfield, and I almost threw him out there to open up another 1B slot, but decided against it.
6. Willie Horton (1963-1977) DH - Willie almost didn't even make it on the team, yet somehow makes it in the starting lineup as the DH. His 262 Tiger HR's rank him 4th all time, and that's pretty sweet.
7. Harry Heilmann (1914-1929) LF - Harry gets the nod in left. I see him sitting sometimes, however, when we want another lefty bat or want to insert another stud 1B off the bench. His 497 Tiger doubles and 145 triples are both 4th all time.
8. Lance Parrish (1977-1986) C - My two catchers are about even with their Tiger stats, so those two will take turns catching. I decided to go with Lance for now just because. Coin flip.
9. Alan Trammell (1977-1996) SS - I actually think Trammell's a better hitter than Lance, but I want his speed batting 9th before the top of the order. Trammell is 5th all time in Tiger stolen bases with 236. I was surprised by that one. He will be the only one in the bottom 4 of the lineup that will play every day. Just not another Tiger SS I want out there consistently.
My lineups going to play a lot of station to station baseball. Not a lot of speed, but not necessarily slow either. Won't be bunting.
Now it's your turn. Pick my lineup apart, and let me know what you'd do differently.