With the Detroit Tigers expected to listen on some of their biggest names this winter, the Yankees should at least do some window shopping.
In his end of the season press conference for 2016, Detroit Tigers general manager Al Avila alluded to the fact that his club could look to shed payroll this winter, saying that, “this organization has been working above its means for some time.” While the Yankees have also been looking to reduce their costs, several of the Tigers veterans could be major upgrades over their current internal options.
Detroit has been handing out huge extensions and free agent contracts like clockwork every offseason over the last few years to try and keep their window open. After missing the playoffs for a second consecutive year, it’s probably time for the Tigers to admit their current approach isn’t working and retool.
If New York is willing to reinvest the roughly $50 million coming off the books with the departures of Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran, Andrew Miller, and Ivan Nova this season, they should have plenty of money to spend this offseason.
Yes, playing their top prospects should be the team’s highest priority, but that doesn’t mean the Yankees shouldn’t be working to fill holes wherever possible and put the best product possible on the field. The problem with the franchise the over the last decade wasn’t that they spent money, it was that they didn’t always spend it wisely.
Unfortunately, most of the players on the Detroit roster who would be of the most interest to New York likely won’t be available. Nick Castellanos stands out in particular as an attractive alternative to Chase Headley. Detroit isn’t expected to do a complete tear-down, however, just try to rid themselves of a few financial burdens.
With that in mind, here are a few of the likely available Tigers who could fill a need for the Yankees this offseason.