The biggest concern, and goal of the fans this off season was to see Dombrowski go out and pick up as many above average pitchers as possible. The Detroit Tigers bullpen blew over 30 saves last year, and cost the team at least 40 games alone. Cut that in half and the tigers were winning the division.
Well...up to this point they have fanned on every attempt to get relief pitchers to date. They lost J.J. Putz (It is pronounced "pootz" so you don't sound stupid), the former Seattle closer to the NY Mets, who also landed the coveted K-Rod. They watched Kerry Wood end up on another team. The bullpen has not changed other than scrubs getting cut to this point.
So...what have they done? Many people may not like the moves, but I am happy with the SS and Catcher signings. Only reason is that it is clear the Tigers are trying to cut salary like the best diet pill to an NFL player's weight. They signed Adam Everett at SS for around $1 Million. A far cry from having to trade players to get Jack Wilson (why do we like this guy so much?) and take on that $7 Million deal for his mediocre services. Then they picked up Ger4ald Laird at catcher who makes around $1.5 Mil. Exactly what I wanted to see. OK players, at cheap prices. Saving probably $10 mil at those spots when we really didn't need hitting help anyways.
Then we traded Matt Joyce to Tampa Bay to pick up starter Edwin Jackson. If you look at the numbers for yearly totals you will think he is the next Nate Robertson. You may be right. Look at his game logs though. He had about 15 quality starts last year, and a stellar run that helped push the Rays into the division crown. Plus he is only 25 years old, and Joyce is never going to be more than a bench/journeyman player anyways. Total wash, or better for us I would say.
We STILL haven't pulled any bullpen help. Fromt he sounds of it the Tigers may be interested in Colorado’s Brian Fuentes. He is the lefty closer they have used forever, and nothing sexy. They also seem to be in the running to landing lefty specialist Joe Beimel.
Fuentes is expected to command a high price. The $10 Mil range, and by all accounts is probably no better, or worse than Beimel, who the Tigers could get for much, much less. A staple of Dombrowski's approach to the bullpen is that he thinks relievers are hit or miss, and paying a ton for guys that could most certainly miss isn't a sound strategy. I agree to an extent, but ONE reliever isn't going to cut it. I'm sure we are all sick of the headcase Fernando Rodney coming tho the mound late in the game to "freak out". If more doesn't happen that is exactly what we are going to see, and with that a lot of late game losses. Get some damned relievers DD!