An injury in spring training to Detroit Tigers’ shortstop Jose Iglesias has left the team without a reliable player at the position. Andrew Romine has played the majority of the games at the position without very good results. The team is still one of the best in baseball and with such a weak bat at shortstop it could slow down an important rally in a big game. With no other option in the organization, they may want to look elsewhere and target one of these three players for trade.
The last time shortstop Jimmy Rollins was a free agent rumors circulated that the Tigers were interested. Instead he ended up staying with the Philadelphia Phillies. True or not, this should be someone the Tigers strongly consider adding. Rollins may be a shell of the player he once was however he has proven in 2014 he deserves to keep playing.
Trading for Rollins would be a move by the Tigers to let everyone know they are interested in contending right away. Even though Rollins probably won’t blow anyone away, he still plays stellar defense–something the Tigers are missing most from Iglesias’s absence. Dependent on how the contract works out they may not be committed beyond 2014. While slightly too expensive, the Tigers cannot put a price on a championship.
Playing for the condemned Cleveland Indians is shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera. A team stuck in mid-tier purgatory for a while now, they will probably be sellers at the trade deadline in 2014 unless they can pull together. Since they do have many young players continuing to come up through the system they may be willing to trade Cabrera to the division rival Tigers, especially since his contract ends after this season.
Cabrera has been underachieving after two consecutive All-Star seasons in 2011 and 2012. His batting average has dipped and he is no longer someone to fear in the lineup. The role Cabrera could have with the Tigers would be as a rental player. Because of this the Indians may be a little less weary on making a trade with a divisional opponent. Cabrera has proven in the past that he can drive in runs and do so with a pretty good batting average. An insertion into the Tigers’ lineup and he may suddenly find his swing again.
An often forgotten shortstop who has played well just about every season since debuting in 2007 is Yunel Escobar. Now a member of the fizzling Tampa Bay Rays in 2014, he could end up as someone the Tigers express someone interest in.
Like Rollins and Cabrera, Escobar is not locked into a long-term contract. The Tigers can essentially use him for this season then dump him in favor of Iglesias for the immediate future. Escobar is a veteran whose biggest flaw might be a lack of playing for winning teams. Fortunately with the pitching staff the Tigers have as well as the lineup they put on the field each day Escobar only needs to play near his career averages to make a big impact on the organization.
More from this contributor:
Three Players the Philadelphia Phillies Should Trade in 2014
Three Players the Texas Rangers Should Trade For in 2014
Three Pitchers the Baltimore Orioles Should Trade For This Season