If there has been one message Detroit has sent with the multitude of trades in the offseason, it is their distaste with last season’s ending. Those underperforming in past seasons are getting the boot, and that list only increased over the last week.Joaquin Benoit, whose contract ended this offseason anyway, is headed to San Diego after signing a two-year, $15.5 million dollar contract with the Padres. This move comes as unsurprising after Joe Nathan signed with Detroit last month.
For Benoit, the pay raise will come with a concrete closing position in California, something that was always uncertain for him in Detroit. He was 24 for 27 in save situations during the regular season and now looks to become a leading man in the dugout for San Diego.
From the bullpen to the infield, Omar Infante says goodbye to Detroit for the second time in his career. The ex-Tiger signed with division foe Kansas City in a four-year, $30 million dollar deal. Infante reportedly received a deal from the New York Yankees worth almost $24 million as well. Again, a relatively good deal for both Detroit and Infante, as the 32-year-old was likely to lose his job to the new Tiger Ian Kinsler.
Naturally, all of these losses in personnel could not have come without more new faces to Detroit.
Enter Rajai Davis, the quick-footed left fielder from Toronto. Davis was picked up by Detroit on a two-year contract with $10 million dollars. The left fielder is considered one of the fastest players in the MLB and will add some speed on the base paths, an area where Detroit is severely lacking. The trio of Davis, Jackson and Hunter in the outfield should have Tiger fans plenty excited, with speed and range to spare.
As Christmas and 2014 roll around, Detroit may begin to slow down on moves in the offseason.
Dombrowski has gotten Tigers fans great Christmas gifts. Kinsler, Davis, and Nathan–what else could they ask for?
We will have to wait a couple months to use them, but they should pay off when April rolls around.
Richie Cozzolino is the host of Tiger Talk for Impact Sports.
Photo: Detroit Tigers