The Tigers are coming off of a somewhat disappointing season, in which they failed to run away with the AL Central division like they were expected to do all season. Although they eventually wound up in the AL Championship Series, the Tigers barely made it past the Oakland Athletics in the AL Division Series, only to have the bullpen fall apart in the late innings.
The expectation for the Tigers in 2013 was to win the World Series, and they failed to do so. Most of the pieces were there, but clutch hits and a solid bullpen eluded them when they were needed most.
Heading into 2014, those expectations will remain the same: World Series or bust. Two-time reigning AL MVP Miguel Cabrera has had an entire offseason to recover from his abdominal surgery, and the pitching staff once again features three potential aces in Justin Verlander, Anibal Sanchez, and 2013 AL Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer. Combine that with a new and improved bullpen, and you have a team primed for another late postseason run.
“People ask me what I do in the winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” — Hall of Famer Rogers Hornsby
It’s the middle of February. There is snow on the ground, temperatures are below 40, and the sun won’t poke out more than a few times until March. That can only mean one thing… baseball season?
I love seeing the teams come together, the personalities mesh, and the chemistry develop. These are the guys that will spend a lot of the next 6 months together, so if they can’t become a team, then they’re in trouble.
The passion, the energy, and the excitement to get back to baseball is infectious.