5 Detroit Tigers Who Should Be 2013 MLB All-Stars
5 Detroit Tigers Who Should be All-Stars
The Detroit Tigers have a lot to look forward to in the next week or so despite their recent 8-12 record in their last 20 games. During that stretch, they saw their solid lead in the AL Central dwindle down to nothing before a loss against the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday put them a half game behind the Cleveland Indians.
As the best offensive team in the league, Detroit has one of the scariest one through five batters in baseball. With Austin Jackson leading off and now seemingly healthy, he is one of the best catalysts in the MLB. Torii Hunter follows him, batting near .300 and seeing his production heat up a bit lately. Followed by easily the best three-four combo in years, Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder have combined for nearly 40 homers and nearly 150 RBI -- and we're only halfway through the season.
The No. 5 hitter, Victor Martinez, is usually a solid hitter, but he missed the entire 2012 season with a knee injury and is taking a bit longer than expected to fully recover and get back into baseball shape. When he's healthy, though, he's one of the best hitters in the league.
The Tigers' pitching is nearly as good as the offense they exhibit. Besides some recent bullpen issues that saw Jose Valverde sent down to the minors as well as a plethora of other moves within the organization, the Tigers have one of the best pitching staffs in the American League.
They may also have the best starting rotation, headlined by Justin Verlander and an undefeated (12-0) Max Scherzer.
Yes, this team is good on paper, but the results have been mixed of late. When they get hot, though, watch out.
Which five guys on this team deserve to make the AL All-Star team?
While I might think Jhonny Peralta is one of the most overrated players on the Tigers, I still have to give him credit for the great season he's having thus far. Hitting .310 with seven home runs and 36 RBIs, Peralta has recovered from his poor 2012 season. He is probably the most logical choice for a starting shortstop in the Midsummer classic.
Omar Infante is one of the best pickups the Tigers have gotten in the past couple of seasons. When they were looking for someone to play second base last season, they fell upon then-Miami Marlin Infante. He's a sure-handed second basemen with a solid bat. Hitting .309 with six homers and 26 RBIs, he's been everything the team could have asked for -- and more.
Besides being on pace to hit about 30 home runs and 130 RBIs this season, Prince Fielder has been a solid fielder and a guy who flat-out hustles every play. He hit over .300 for the first time in his career in 2012 with the Tigers and while he is struggling with a .273 average right now, he's still severely underrated. Everyone talks about Miguel Cabrera, but Fielder seems to be a bit forgotten.
This is one is a bit of a no-brainer. Scherzer is undefeated at 12-0 and has an ERA of 3.10 while being one of the best strikeouts pitchers in baseball. He's just three wins away from tying the MLB record for the best start in a season. Scherzer has been as reliable as they come and should be a lock to appear in the All-Star Game.
Once again, Cabrera is on track to compete for the MVP Award as well as the rarest of rare accomplishments: the Triple Crown. He's hitting a scorching .369 with 25 home runs with 82 RBIs, leading in both average and RBI and trailing the red-hot Chris Davis in home runs. If he doesn't make the All-Star Game, which he will, then I've lost all faith in baseball.