The Detroit Tigers have been searching for their backup/platoon player for the outfield and more specifically left field all spring. Andy Dirks has been named the starter in left field, but Detroit is looking for a right handed batter to complement Dirks. It seems that Matt Tuiasosopo is that man.
Tuiasosopo, who was a relative unknown coming into Spring Training, came in and hit .327 with four home runs. In a span of four games, he hit three home runs which began to turn heads in camp. Along with all the home runs, he also hit six doubles giving him 10 RBI so far through Spring Training.
Tuiasosopo has a great confidence about him, and he knows that he has the talent to compete at this level. He said that he wasn’t that surprised that he made the club because when he came to camp he knew great things were possible. He actually wrote a letter to Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski asking him for a chance to come to camp as a non-roster invitee. Most would say that takes guts, and it paid off.
I like Tuiasosopo for the most part because of his story. As sports fans, we root for the underdog a lot of the time, and he is exactly that. I’m a fan of Dirks so I don’t really think they need to platoon someone out there to begin with, but Tuiasosopo could be a good option. With Quintin Berry being banged up and Don Kelly being shaky at best, Tuiasosopo was the front-runner for the position.
He will certainly bring some nice pop to the lineup, but at the same time, I’m trying to hold back my expectations. It will be interesting to see what happens, but it’s safe to say that the letter he wrote to Dave Dombrowski was the best decision of his life.