MLB Detroit Tigers

5 Players Who Need To Step Up For Detroit Tigers

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5 Players Who Need To Step Up For Detroit Tigers

Kevin Jairaj- USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Tigers have come up just short of reaching their ultimate goal of winning a World Championship for several years now. The team always seems to be just a couple things short of finishing the job that was started all the way back in 2006. In order to finally break through and stop another season of almost and what could have been, the Tigers are going to need a few of their players to step up while also having a couple new faces come in and get the job done.

In some cases the bar is set pretty low at what is needed to improve from what they have given the Tigers or other teams, but for others it is going to be imperative they keep up their recent success. The margin for error is probably at its lowest with recent losses like Doug Fister, and it is going to take a complete group effort if this team is going to beat the type of tough competition it will be facing both in its division and around baseball.

So take a look at the 5 Detroit Tigers who absolutely need to step up this season if the Tigers are going to compete for a World Series. Obviously some players like Miguel Cabrera and Justin Verlander you don't even have to list because you know they are going to bring it. The key is going to be the other players who are less reliable to bring it day in and day out because if they don't, the Tigers are going to be in a lot of trouble.

Brent Smith is a Detroit Tigers writer for Follow him on Twitter @brentweets or add him to your network on Google

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5. Austin Jackson

Robert Deutsch- USA TODAY Sports

Austin Jackson just didn't do the job in 2012, but the talent is still there to be the leadoff hitter and defender that can lead a team to a title. Just hitting .290 and playing great defense will be a huge help to this team.

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4. Nick Castellanos

Rick Osentoski- USA TODAY Sports

The new guy is going to need to produce right out of the gate. No one is expecting him to put up Prince Fielder numbers, but Nick Castellanos has to be a productive hitter and fielder for the team to do well.

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3. Rick Porcello

Steve Mitchell- USA TODAY Sports

Rick Porcello now has an added importance with Doug Fister being traded. Porcello has to resemble more of a third starter more than he does a back end of the rotation guy.

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2. Joba Chamberlain

Bob DeChiara- USA TODAY Sports

The Tigers are thin in the bullpen and desperately need a shutdown 7th and 8th inning guy. Joba Chamberlain used to be that guy, and if he can even be half of what he was it will help the Tigers tremendously.

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1. Joe Nathan

Peter Aiken- USA TODAY Sports

Joe Nathan got a little lucky last year, but his numbers were the type of numbers the Tigers have desperately needed at closer. Nathan needs to be the stable force that closes games if the Tigers are going to be contenders.