5:54 AM EST, Sat February 13, 2016
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Rob Rogacki / Bless You Boys 19 hours ago

Tigers' JaCoby Jones is the most interesting prospect in the organization

One of the team's top position prospects, Jones' ceiling is a super-utility player with power and speed. Power. Speed. Athleticism. These are some of the words often used effusively to describe the very best players in baseball. They are also littered all over the scouting reports of JaCoby Jones, one of the Detroit Tigers' newest top prospects. Jones, acquired from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for Joakim Soria last July, isn't on the same level as the Mike Trouts and Josh Donaldsons of the world, but he does have tantalizing upside. Jones was originally the Pirates' third round pick...
Bless You Boys 20 hours ago

Vegas odds are seriously undervaluing the 2016 Tigers

The Tigers did a disappearing act in 2015 after winning the division in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014. Why has the baseball world so quickly forgotten that this team is the long-time Dominator of the Division? Recency bias is such a powerful force that I'm amazed scientists haven't yet tried to figure out how to convert into energy or fuel. The Detroit Tigers had one fantastically awful season last year, and suddenly the rest of the baseball world seems to have forgotten that the Great Tanking of 2015 was preceded by four straight AL Central Division titles. Out of sight, out of mind, I guess,...
Bless You Boys 21 hours ago

Tigers Valentine's Cards guaranteed to get you dumped

You want some Tigers-related Valentine's Day cards for that special someone in your life? You should probably look somewhere else. Valentine's Day is this weekend, and we're guessing you need that perfect message to pass along to that significant other in your life. We're here to help, but not really. Not at all. Truth be told, we're very much ashamed that we ever thought this would be a good idea. I  mean, really, there's not a lot left to say except that we're so very, very sorry for this. Just ... here you go. Get it? Because he throws a really nasty curveball and ......
Bless You Boys Feb 11, 2016

Tigers' Spencer Turnbull still needs to improve his command in 2016

Spencer Turnbull throws hard. Really hard. But that's not enough to push him through the minor leagues. When it comes to stature and velocity, pitchers aren't gift-wrapped much prettier than big righthander Spencer Turnbull. Standing in at a solid 6'3, 215 pounds, Turnbull surfaced with both a blueprint build and résumé as a member of the Alabama Crimson Tide. Accolades in tow, Turnbull fit the bill for the Detroit Tigers, who snagged the Mississippi native in the second round of the 2014 MLB draft. Detroit's second round man saw just one game for his 2014 debut in the Gulf Coast League,...

Tigers' Michael Fulmer named top-50 prospect by ESPN's Keith Law

Fulmer lands at No. 48 on Law's top prospect rankings, his highest rating of the year. One day after naming the Detroit Tigers the 26th-best farm system in baseball -- we're not last! -- ESPN's Keith Law released his annual top-100 prospect rankings. After not placing on the list prior to the 2015 season, Tigers righthander Michael Fulmer shot all the way up to No. 48. He was the only Tigers prospect to appear on the list. Law's ranking of Fulmer is the highest that the 22-year-old righthander has received this preseason. MLB.com put him at No. 53 overall, while Scout was a few places lower...

Tigers prospect Jairo Labourt has boom-or-bust upside

A big lefty that has been compared to Francisco Liriano, Labourt's secondary pitches and command still need work. It's not often that the throw-in player in a blockbuster trade suddenly becomes one of your best prospects, but here we are. The Detroit Tigers received lefthander Jairo Labourt in the same deadline deal that brought Daniel Norris and Matt Boyd into the fold. Both Norris and Boyd have graduated off any prospect lists by now, while Labourt is sitting around the fringes of many top-10 lists for the Tigers system. The 21-year-old Labourt was originally signed by the Toronto Blue...

The Voice of the Turtle, Episode 20: Save us, baseball

Despite there being no actual baseball to talk about, Rob and HookSlide turn in their longest episode yet as they discuss the J.D. Martinez extension, where the Tigers rank in the AL Central, and their grades for the Tigers' offseason. We might be losing it. With no real baseball to talk about over the past two weeks, Rob and HookSlide still found a way to turn in their longest show to date, recording a two-hour, 21 minute podcast entirely about J.D. Martinez's two-year contract extension. ...and a few other things. This week's show also covers what the Tigers' master plan is, what with all...
Bless You Boys Feb 10, 2016

Detroit Tigers Links: Is the window really closing?

Could the Tigers compete well past next year? The popular narrative surrounding this current iteration of the Tigers has been, "The window closing." It's an understandable assumption by the masses. And yes, even I've had some fun with the idea. An aging core that includes three massive longterm contracts lends itself to a team that should only have a couple years left for competition. But with the re-signing of J.D. Martinez and the opt out clause of Justin Upton, the Tigers are not as hamstrung as many make them out to be. Outside of Justin Verlander, Miguel Cabrera, and Jordan...

Tigers spring training non-roster invitees you need to know about

The Tigers will bring 17 extra players to spring training this year. Here's what you need to know about them. Last month, the Detroit Tigers announced that they extended spring training invites to 17 players not already on their 40-man roster. You may have already read about them. If so, congratulations! You have a borderline unhealthy obsession with this team. For those that aren't already in the know, you have come to the right place. Not only are the players listed below, they're grouped into categories based on their chances of making the team (or something). It's like high school,...

Tigers make smart long-term move with short J.D. Martinez contract extension

The Tigers could have gone big. Instead, they played it safe by signing Martinez to a two-year deal. The Detroit Tigers' fanbase erupted when news broke of the club's agreement with J.D. Martinez on a two-year contract extension Monday evening. However, once the smoke cleared, reality set in. Martinez's new deal looks shiny in a headline, but only buys out his last two seasons of arbitration eligibility before he hits free agency following the 2017 season. Naturally, Tigers fans are somewhat disappointed. Martinez has quickly become a fan-favorite in Detroit, in no small part thanks to his...

Signing Mike Pelfrey was the Tigers' worst move of the offseason

The Tigers have had a good offseason, but the Pelfrey signing was still questionable. The Detroit Tigers have made some questionable moves in past offseasons. Trading for Alfredo Simon. A general negligence towards the bullpen. The Doug Fi- /gets booed off stage You get the idea. This year, the Tigers haven't had that WTF move that characterized past offseasons. Everything has made some sense for the most part, and other moves -- signing Jordan Zimmermann, trading for Francisco Rodriguez, and others -- were unanimously praised the moment they were announced. General manager Al Avila has...

Tigers agree to 2-year contract extension with J.D. Martinez

Martinez will be paid $18.5 million over his final two seasons of club control. All winter long, Tigers fans were hoping that the club and J.D. Martinez would agree to a multi-year contract. Good news: that deal is here. Martinez and the Tigers agreed to a two-year extension worth $18.5 million on Monday evening, according to Robert Murray of Baseball Essential. A source close to Bless You Boys has since confirmed the move. Jennifer Hammond of FOX 2 reports that Martinez will be paid $6.75 million in 2016, with the final $11.75 million coming in 2017, his final season of club control. The...
Bless You Boys Feb 8, 2016

Paul Voelker hoping to carry last season's momentum into 2016

Voelker's ability to perform under pressure should help him push closer to the major leagues this year. Whenever the MLB draft rolls around, snagging a statuesque hurler tends to sit atop the wish list of most organizations, but once in a great while, the acquisition of a diamond in the rough helps prove that you can't always judge a book by its cover. For the Detroit Tigers, the proverbial needle in a haystack came in the form of 5'10, 185-pound righthander Paul Voelker, their 10th round selection in the 2014 draft. Coming out of Dallas Baptist University, Voelker posted an impressive 3.89...

Jarrod Saltalamacchia is the Tigers' most underrated move of the offseason

Nearly all of the Tigers' offseason transactions were positive, but adding Salty was better than people think. There is a lot of roster turnover in Major League Baseball these days. On our last podcast, HookSlide and I pointed out that just three position players and two starting pitchers from the Detroit Tigers' 2013 squad are still in the organization. The Tigers were especially busy this offseason, resulting in a team that will have at least nine players on its Opening Day roster that were not with the organization last October. Last week, fearless BYB leader Kurt Mensching used his...

The best move in the AL Central this offseason

Because it's not Mike Napoli. While many may consider baseball a boring sport -- compared to football, for example, on this Super Bowl Sunday -- the MLB offseason is anything but. Blockbuster trades, high-priced free agent signings, and rumors abound, there is no shortage of player movement once the calendar turns to November. Now that we are close to spring training, it's time to look at the best moves of the offseason. MLB.com's A.J. Cassavell did so early Sunday morning, identifying the "most impactful" move in each division. The AL Central's representative? Mike Napoli. Huh. Napoli is...
Fenway Nation Feb 6, 2016

Red Sox Edge Out Tigers In For AL Hot Stove Title

It's close, but it looks as if the Red Sox have slightly outdone the Detroit Tigers in the race to be the American League team to dominate the off-season. The Motor City franchise made some serious improvements to their benighted bullpen with Francisco Rodriguez and shored up their rotation with the addition of Jordan Zimmermann and Mike Pelfrey. And while Cameron Maybin is a very nice player, it was the acquisition of Justin Upton that really moved the Tigers into Central division contention. On the other hand, The Carmine Hose finally got a Number One starter in David Price—which...
Bless You Boys Feb 5, 2016

This minor league team's plan to attract fans may shock you!

I mean, if you are a person who gets stunned by obvious things a lot. This may be an earthshaking surprise to you, but I never went to journalism school. Shoot, I barely made it through Freshman English. A passive sentence is not something that could be identified by me. But when I was invited to the Whitecaps' food tasting event, I knew I needed a hook. I needed an angle to capture the reader's attention and wow them with my wit. The event is very fun, but pretty straight-forward. The Tigers' Class A minor league affiliate hosts a number of food vendors and brokers to demonstrate their...
Bless You Boys Feb 5, 2016

Christin Stewart's bat will be a main attraction in 2016

Stewart's bat will be his calling card during his ascent through the minor leagues, but how high will he go in 2016? Prior to the Detroit Tigers' selection of Derek Hill as their number one man in the 2014 MLB amateur draft, they had not chosen an outfielder as their top pick since nabbing Brandon Hamilton (who?) in 2007. Now, they're on a roll. For the second consecutive year, Detroit carried the same formula by buying stock in University of Tennessee junior outfielder Christin Stewart. In his three years with the Volunteers program, the 6'0, 205 pound concrete lefty took no time to...

Mailbag: Cliff Lee is not signing with the Tigers

Unless he decides to make me look bad. The Detroit Tigers' bullpen has long been a bugaboo for a club that has remained in contention for nearly a full decade. In fact, you might have to go back to that 2006 Tigers team to find a bullpen that fans were truly confident in. The names didn't make sense at the time -- Todd Jones? Fernando Rodney? Jamie Walker?! -- but that unit got the job done, posting the second-best ERA in the American League. Since then, things haven't been so rosy. The Tigers have the worst bullpen ERA among AL teams* since 2007, and have finished in the bottom third of...

Beau Burrows is the Tigers' newest hard-throwing pitching prospect

A first round pick in 2015, Burrows is already making waves in the Tigers system. Despite the profile described below, drafting hard-throwing righthander Beau Burrows was actually a surprise move from the Detroit Tigers. Sure, there's the hard-throwing part -- and boy, do the Tigers like their draftees to throw hard -- but with several high-profile college arms of similar stature available in the 2015 amateur draft, selecting the Texas high schooler at No. 22 overall was a bit of a shocker. So far, so good. Burrows blazed through the Gulf Coast League last summer, allowing a 1.61 ERA while...

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