Detroit Tigers: Losing Jhonny Peralta Won't Hurt As Much As People Think

By Connor Muldowney
Jhonny Peralta
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

News has surfaced Monday afternoon that 13 MLB players are set to be suspended from baseball for at least 50 games. Alex Rodriguez was the biggest story of them all, facing a 211-game suspension, not being eligible to play again until the 2015 season.

Among those suspended for 50 games is Detroit Tigers shortstop and 2013 MLB All-Star, Jhonny Peralta. The 31-year-old shortstop has been playing out of his mind in 2013, having his best season as a major leaguer since his debut in 2003. Hitting .305 with 11 homers and 54 RBIs, the Tigers seem to have suffered a huge blow by losing him for most of the remaining regular season.

However, many people don’t realize how little Detroit and manager Jim Leyland have relied upon him this season. With two outs and runners in scoring position, Peralta has 18 RBIs but no home runs, and has not been as clutch as people would expect out of an All-Star such as himself. Moreover, a majority of his home runs (seven) have come with nobody on base.

Sure, his 11 home runs and 54 RBIs to along with a .300-plus average will be missed, but the Tigers picked up 23-year-old shortstop sensation Jose Iglesias from the Boston Red Sox. Iglesias has been solid since joining the team a few days ago and is hitting .323 with two home runs and 21 RBIs in 66 games.

He is sure to be the shortstop of the future and although his bat has been red-hot, it’s his glove that has everyone talking. Iglesias can make plays that seemingly no one else at his position could make, and has range as good as or better than any shortstop in baseball.

Well, losing Peralta isn’t the greatest news seeing as they have been without third baseman Miguel Cabrera and second baseman Omar Infante, but this team will find a way to win.

The infield has been dismantled a bit lately, but with youngster Hernan Perez filling in at second, Cabrera coming back from injury and Iglesias manning shortstop, Detroit will be fine.

Connor Muldowney is a columnist for Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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