Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Above the Fold - The trade that shook the baseball world, Detroit MSM edition

I'm sure that I've ever seen the trained "Journalists" in total lockstep over a single issue before. That's changed as of 6:15 pm, December 5, 2007.

It's unanimous, the local MSM loves the Tigers' brash boldness in trading for Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis. The Tiger love is overwhelming...

The Little Fella, who has been unusually prolific as of late, is effusive in his praise...

The Tigers' lineup -- with Cabrera, Renteria, Guillen, Magglio Ordonez, Gary Sheffield, Placido Polanco, Pudge Rodriguez, Jacque Jones and Curtis Granderson -- is shaping up to be a brick-smasher. And with Willis, Justin Verlander, Jeremy Bonderman, Nate Robertson and recently re-signed Kenny Rogers, well, nothing shabby about that rotation.

"It's a feather in the cap of the farm systems that we could make this trade," Leyland said. "To me, the scouting director is the hero of the night."

But that "boom" is the memory of it. Happy early Christmas, Tigers fans.

How long until April?

And a Happy New Year!

Drew Sharp sheaves his knives, and praises the Tigers for their fearlessness...

Let the word go forth that the Tigers are serious about winning championships, not just winning enough games to keep interest high and ticket sales moving. And you can't fear parting with precious prospects if the end result is a victorious champagne shower in late October.

Ilitch changed the culture when he dumped more money into the farm system, upgrading scouting and not running scared from young talent with a high negotiation price tag attached. Maybin and Miller fell into the Tigers' lap because other teams feared drafting them and not signing them.

Ilitch never blinked, sending the edict to president/general manager Dave Dombrowski: Do whatever necessary, pay whatever price to get the best talent available.

When Detroit's most well known hatchet man is impressed, it really has to be for good reason. This trade is good reason.

Wojo says the news of the trade sent such shockwaves though the baseball establishment, the New York-Boston axis was shaken to the core...

This is a terrific deal because even though the Tigers gave up their absolute best prospects in Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller, they didn't get aging veterans in return. They got a certain star (Cabrera) and an on-and-off star (Willis) entering their primes. Owner Mike Ilitch's mandate to finish the World Series job is relentless, and GM Dave Dombrowski is doing everything possible to deliver.

Seriously, if you're a Tigers fan, you need sandpaper to scrape the smile off your face. If Maybin and Miller become stars -- the Marlins are masters at dealing established players for risers -- it won't happen for a couple of years. The Tigers did what top franchises do. They took advantage of a small-market team's financial woes and cashed in long-term annuities for immediate dividends.

It's going to take more than sandpaper to wipe this shit eating grin off this fan's face, Wojo...

The "Worst columnist in America" chimes in, calling the trade a "No-brainer." Takes one to know one, I always say...

Maybin and Miller, though, were considered the Tigers' top prospects.

That said, there's no reason to panic or think general manager Dave Dombrowski has lost it.

It's the exact opposite, in fact.

In pulling the trigger, Dombrowski hit a home run. To his credit, the GM knows his team has to win now, not five years from now.

Strong words from the dipshit who called Dave Dombrowski "The worst GM in Detroit sports" less than 2 years ago.

Terry Foster was talking with fans in a local watering hole last night, and the conversation was strictly about the Tigers. Not the Lions, Pistons, or Wings. The Tigers.

The Pistons were stomping the Atlanta Hawks and the Red Wings were doing their thing against Original Six foe Montreal. But all anybody wanted to talk about was the Detroit Tigers. It just goes to show that you don't need to win on the field to bring excitement to this town.

The Tigers pulled off a blockbuster and folks were smiling from ear to ear. Infielder Miguel Cabrera and pitcher Dontrelle Willis are coming to town for six prospects including Andrew Miller and Cameron Maybin. To be honest I never thought the trade would happen.

Danny Knobler talks Tigers payroll, and it's going to be a doozy...

The Tigers also will be an expensive team. Cabrera made $7.4 million in 2007 and could come close to doubling that in 2008. Willis could get a raise from his $6.45 million 2007 salary. Both players are eligible to become free agents after 2009, although it is likely the Tigers will get to work on long-term contracts.

The Tigers payroll, already expected to surpass $100 million, could now soar past $110 million. But owner Mike Ilitch once again approved an increase.

That's got to be in the top 5-6 in all of baseball. Scratch that, the Freep has the payroll pegged at...Get this...$128 million!

That's 3rd in MLB, just behind the Yankees-Red Sox axis of evil. Then again, I'm sure fans in other cities are now thinking of the Tigers in the same way NHL fans think of the Red Wings, as part of that big market axis of evil.

Try wrapping your head around that $120 million plus payroll, when you think back to 5 years ago when the Tigers were such sad sacks of shit, they were having trouble meeting payroll! Hell, the payroll won't be an issue, as I can tell you right now, I would not be one bit surprised if the Tigers have 81 sellouts in 2008. The town is fired up over the Tigers, and want the season to start YESTERDAY!

Pat "The Book" Caputo, the self anointed baseball expert of the B-list fishwrap, The Oakland Press, LOVES this trade!

The only thing the Tigers have to lose in this deal is money. Cabrera and Willis don't come cheap. That's where you have to credit Tigers owner Mike Ilitch for his will to win - regardless of the cost.

The Tigers' player payroll is astronomical. Yet the message is clear - they are going for it. Damn the expense.

The window of opportunity is two years. It is the time remaining on the contracts of Magglio Ordonez, Gary Sheffield and manager Jim Leyland. That should be time, however, for the Tigers to fortify their minor league system.

The Tigers will have an astonishing lineup. Shortstop Edgar Renteria hit .332 for Atlanta last season - and might be hitting ninth. Or it might be Ivan Rodriguez - a certain Hall of Famer.

Full speed ahead, damn the torpedoes, ramming speed! The Tigers are now a force to be reckoned with, leveling the playing field with the BoSox and Yankees.

The best part of this trade? We don't have to talk about the clusterfucks that are the Lions nosedive, and the Wolverines search for a head coach.

It's a good day to be a fan of the Detroit Tigers! Nothing more needs to be said...

That's "Above the Fold - MSM edition" for Wednesday, 12-5-07!

1 comment:

  1. Everyone seems to be saying this is a result of Ilitch's committment. So how old is Mike? And how healthy? When he croaks, as old people seem to do with alarming regularity, will his heirs have this same outlook about the Tigers? Just askin'