The Detroit Tigers had a broad selection of candidates heading into free agency this offseason when it came to picking their left fielder. It was a done deal in everyone’s mind that the Tigers were going to be major players for all of the big names on the market and that they would be landing someone like Carlos Beltran, Jacoby Ellsbury, or Shin-Soo Choo.
But as name after name began to go off the board and as the prices soared higher and higher, it became increasingly clear that the Tigers decided they were just going to ride it out and leave the keys to Andy Dirks. There is no bigger time than now for him to shine.
This move is more about the money than it is about trust in Dirks, but the Tigers now have no choice but to trust him as all the major outfielder are off the board. The Tigers did sign Rajai Davis to hedge their bet, but make no mistake, it will be Dirks that will get the bulk of the playing time in a crucial position to the Tigers’ chances for success in 2014.
Whether that should alarm you or not remains to be seen. One thing that the Tigers absolutely cannot afford is to have Dirks play like he did in 2013, where he had Tigers fans begging for Don Kelly. If you know Tigers fans, you would know just how desperate that is. It is like begging the dentist to perform a root canal because the pain in your mouth is actually worse than the root canal. The Tigers can’t have that pain if they want to be a serious contender this season.