DETROIT TIGER FANS!
For full access to all our areas, please register (free), there are areas that do not show up until you register and log-in.

DETROIT TIGER FANS!

A place for Detroit Tiger Fans to come together for a bit of fun
 
HomeHome  CalendarCalendar  FAQFAQ  SearchSearch  RegisterRegister  MemberlistMemberlist  UsergroupsUsergroups  Log inLog in  
Please log in and join in the fun of game day threads (GDT) and in overall Tigers chat.
CONGRATS TO CABRERA AND HUNTER on winning 2013 Silver Slugger Awards!
DETROIT TIGERS - 2011, 2012 & 2013 AL CENTRAL DIVISION CHAMPS!

Share | 
 

 Record extension makes Miggy a lifelong Tiger

View previous topic View next topic Go down 
AuthorMessage
GoGetEmTigers
DTF1 ADMINISTRATOR Detroit Tiger
DTF1 ADMINISTRATOR Detroit Tiger
avatar

Female
Number of posts : 57424
Age : 58
Location : Eastern Ohio, near Wheeling WV
Favorite Current Tiger(s) : JV, Hunter, Jackson, Porcello, Avila (really ALL of em!)
Reputation : 20
Registration date : 2007-10-05

PostSubject: Record extension makes Miggy a lifelong Tiger   Sat Mar 29, 2014 1:44 am

Record extension makes Miggy a lifelong Tiger
Eight-year deal will keep superstar under contract through at least 2023

By Jason Beck / MLB.com | 3/28/2014 2:18 P.M. ET

LAKELAND, Fla. -- Tigers owner Mike Ilitch got the superstar he wanted with a shocking trade for Miguel Cabrera seven seasons ago. Three batting titles, two MVP Awards and a Triple Crown later, the Tigers ensured they will kept their superstar for the rest of his career.

"I want to finish my career here," Cabrera said at a Friday morning news conference announcing his contract extension through at least 2023. "I want to be a Tiger for many years to come. I have a big responsibility here, I want to work hard and get better and help my team to win games and win a championship."

Add in the remaining two seasons on Cabrera's current deal with the eight-year extension, and it qualifies for the largest contract in baseball history, reportedly $292 million for the next 10 seasons. The deal includes vesting options for 2024 and '25 at $30 million each, which would be triggered if Cabrera finishes in the top 10 in American League MVP Award voting the previous seasons.

It's a franchise-shaping deal, paying Cabrera -- who will turn 31 on April 18 -- an average of $30 million through age 40, and it'll likely define the team's fortunes for years. It's a deal that the Tigers didn't hesitate to make, signing him with two years to go before potential free agency.

"If you're ever going to take a chance, and to get a deal done you have to take that chance, I would take the chance on him," team president/general manager Dave Dombrowski said.

More important, the owner who invested the money to bring in Cabrera was willing to take the chance. Though the 84-year-old Ilitch was not at the news conference, his influence was evident. And an owner with a history of loyalty to players who win for him, from Ivan Rodriguez to Magglio Ordonez to Justin Verlander, demonstrated it again for the player behind Detroit's three consecutive postseason runs, only on another level.

"We want [Cabrera] to be a Detroit Tiger when he goes into the Hall of Fame, and whatever records may be set along the way," Dombrowski said. "It's very important to [Ilitch], so of course he's very involved."

Though the Tigers had seemingly been preparing for such a megadeal since last fall, when they traded Prince Fielder and most of his contract to Texas, the agreement came together relatively quickly for a contract of that magnitude. As recently as Monday, a source with knowledge of the talks said no deal was close, despite reports of encouraging signs. Talks didn't begin in earnest, Dombrowski indicated, until just over two weeks ago. They were still coming together, apparently, when talks broke off between Detroit and reigning AL Cy Young winner Max Scherzer.

While Scherzer's situation had a sense of urgency to it this spring, with free agency looming next year and neither side interested in negotiating during the season, Cabrera was fairly laid back about his contract talks. The 2012 AL Triple Crown winner said going into camp that there was no rush on getting a deal done.

That said, Scherzer's situation arguably became an example of how difficult it can be to sign a star player just a year away from free agency, when the risk of injury seems more manageable than it does at two years away. The Tigers were not interested in taking that risk.

When asked, "Why now?" Dombrowski essentially answered with the risks of later.

"I realize other people may think otherwise, but when you get to one year away, that lure of free agency becomes very large for a player that is a very good player," Dombrowski said. "Secondly, they get a lot of additional pressure on themselves to test that market. Perhaps if you had something that you needed to observe on the player, I could understand that. I don't think we need to observe Miguel's ability. …

"I know that people will look at it and say, 'This is the largest contract out there,' and understandably so. The dollars generally don't go down with other contracts. So for me, this was the optimum time."

Cabrera, for his part, indicated he was not interested in testing the market. Dombrowski said Cabrera's agents approached him at the end of last season and noted Cabrera's interest in a career-encompassing contract.

"I feel comfortable here," Cabrera said Friday. "We've gone through a lot of good years together. The last few years, we've been in the playoffs. This is going to be a great team for many years to come. This is a great organization. We have a great owner. We have a great front office.

"They make you feel comfortable here. They make you feel like this is your house, this is the place you want to be. I have a house in Detroit. We have great fans in Detroit. We have a great ballpark. I love to play in Detroit. I want to be part of it for a long time."

The market value of what Cabrera has already accomplished in Detroit is obvious. He's the first back-to-back MVP Award winner on the Tigers since Hal Newhouser in 1944-45, the only Triple Crown winner since 1967 and the first right-handed hitter to win three consecutive batting titles since Rogers Hornsby in the 1920s.

What Detroit had to debate in approaching contract talks, and what the rest of baseball will debate now, is how Cabrera's game will age, and how to value that. He played at least 150 games for nine consecutive seasons until back and core muscle injuries limited him to 148 games last year.

Even with the injury, Cabrera's ability to stay on the field amazed. He played through injuries since at least early July, when back issues began to hobble him. Once Cabrera's core muscle injury began to limit him in August, his power began to diminish along with his mobility. By season's end, he was a singles-and-homers hitter, no longer able to leg out extra bases.

Cabrera still finished the season with some of the best numbers of his career, including a .348 batting average, a .636 slugging percentage and a 1.078 OPS.

"You're talking about one of the greatest hitters of all time," Dombrowski said. "When you start looking at the names you compare him to, you're talking about guys like Ruth and Mantle and Mays and Aaron. Those are the elite of our game.

"And when you look at Miguel, his work ethic is phenomenal. His drive to win is phenomenal. He has made a real commitment to get himself in great condition. Also, when you analyze hitters, he's not strictly a pull hitter. He uses the whole field. He's a great hitter that happens to be a home run hitter, too, which is very rare."

Rare, too, is Cabrera's power to all parts of the park, plate coverage that extends both inside and off the plate and a bat quick enough to turn on any fastball. At some point, healthy or not, some of those skills will begin to diminish. The key to gaining value from the later years of an extension will be Cabrera's bat speed, and his ability to produce key hits well into his 30s.

The list of cautionary tales includes the 10-year, $275 million contract Alex Rodriguez signed to stay with the Yankees after the 2007 season, and the 10-year deal Albert Pujols signed with the Angels a few years ago. Both deals carry past the respective player's 40th birthday, as does Cabrera's.

Dombrowski acknowledged the risk. He also used Derek Jeter's 10-year contract as a counterargument, though that deal only lasted through 2010, when Jeter was 36.

"I know Albert Pujols, I know Alex Rodriguez, but I don't know them," Dombrowski said. "And I'm sure that their organizations felt comfortable [signing the contracts] at the time. But I know [Cabrera], and I know how dedicated and hard-working he is. And he wanted to be here."

Just as important, so did his boss.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
GoGetEmTigers
DTF1 ADMINISTRATOR Detroit Tiger
DTF1 ADMINISTRATOR Detroit Tiger
avatar

Female
Number of posts : 57424
Age : 58
Location : Eastern Ohio, near Wheeling WV
Favorite Current Tiger(s) : JV, Hunter, Jackson, Porcello, Avila (really ALL of em!)
Reputation : 20
Registration date : 2007-10-05

PostSubject: Re: Record extension makes Miggy a lifelong Tiger   Sat Mar 29, 2014 1:46 am

No doubt in Tigers' minds that Miggy is deserving
Teammates attest to slugger's work ethic as big reason extension makes sense

By Jason Beck / MLB.com | 3/28/2014 6:14 P.M. ET

LAKELAND, Fla. -- Tigers manager Brad Ausmus spent 18 years as a player watching the game blossom and contracts grow. He's part of management now, but when he hears the cries of salaries soaring up and away, it rings like the old generation griping about the new music the kids are listening to.

"Every generation of players says that about the following generation," Ausmus said. "They always say that the following generation is getting too much money.

"My take is the market's changing, and it has changed consistently since the union was formed, and this is what players are worth, and that's what they should get paid. I don't fault owners for paying it. I don't fault players for taking it.

"It's an entertainment industry. People don't gripe about what Tom Cruise is making. I'm sure he's doing pretty well."

Cruise, as Ausmus observed, never won a Triple Crown. When a reporter answered that Miguel Cabrera has never won an Oscar, Ausmus was ready.

"Neither has Tom Cruise," he said with a smile.

While Cabrera's record-setting contract created a stir around baseball, it was probably no surprise that the reaction was different in Tigers circles. Justin Verlander was in Miguel Cabrera's spot a year ago, holding a news conference at the end of Spring Training for a market-shifting contract extension. On Friday, he was a spectator, watching Cabrera accept an extension that makes his the largest contract in Major League history, reportedly $292 million for the next 10 seasons. The deal includes vesting options for 2024 and '25 at $30 million each, which would be triggered if Cabrera finishes in the top 10 in American League MVP Award voting the previous seasons.

"He deserves it," Verlander said. "He's the best player on the planet in my opinion, certainly the best hitter."

No matter what happens to the Tigers' payroll, Verlander's future in Detroit, of course, seems secure. Several teammates on the verage of hitting the open market in the next couple years, however, had similar sentiments.

"Well deserved," said Torii Hunter, who is entering the final season of his two-year deal.

Both Verlander and Hunter mentioned, as well as Ausmus, is the work that Cabrera puts in behind the production. As much as ability has put him in position of the best hitter in the game at the moment, and possibly one of the best of all time, so has his preparation over the past few years.

There's a price Cabrera puts in to be the player he is, they insist. It reflects in the market value he gets back. It's an aspect of Cabrera's game Hunter has said several times that he didn't know about until he joined the Tigers.

"Me on the other side as the enemy, I just saw him hit homers and said he could hit," Hunter said. "But to see what he does behind the scenes, that's what shows the success on the field. I mean, he's up at 6:30 in the morning in Spring Training, lifting weights and trying to get bigger, because now he's at first base. Last year, he was trying to lose weight so he could be a little quicker at third base.

"He does a lot of different things to prepare himself to be successful on the field. That's something I really admire, and I wasn't able to see that. He's in the cage, working on his swing. He's in the weight room, lifting weights. If anybody deserves it, a guy that truly represents baseball well, represents his organization like Miguel Cabrera deserves what he's got. That's impressive."

It's that work ethic, they say, that gives Cabrera the chance to play up to the contract -- not just the value, but the years as he ages. They get the emphasis on paying for future production, not past.

Hunter, at age 38, has an appreciation for it. He has had to not only work hard, but adjust his game as he has grown older. Asked what advice he'd have for Cabrera, his relayed something he was told as a teenager.

"Don't get too bulky, and don't get overweight," Hunter said. "Once you get that tire around your waist, you're done. You can't rotate, you can't move, you slow down. Somebody told me that a long time ago, when I was 16."

Asked how Cabrera's game will evolve, Hunter said, "A guy like that, he can hit. Of course, his running and athleticism might diminish a little bit, but as far as hitting, this guy's going to hit, no doubt about it. Just give him a bat. …

"And he can DH. This is the American League. He can DH at least five of those years if he wanted to. If he plays first base, you don't have to do much at first either. I think he'll be fine."

Cabrera, for his part, wasn't guaranteeing anything about being a designated hitter. When asked if he expects to be a DH at age 40, his final year, he shrugged.

"I don't know yet," he said. "Let's wait 10 more years. Let's talk about right now. I'm going to play first. Let's wait until I get to 40 and ask me that."

The power could eventually tail off, as could some other facets of hitting. The coordination, the pitch recognition, the approach should not, in Hunter's eyes.

"Your reflexes might, but I don't think your hand-eye coordination diminishes that much," Hunter said.

Said Verlander: "You look at his swing, you look at his body type -- he's a big, strong guy, so I think he's going to be able to hit for as long as he wants to hit. I don't think it's any question."

If he does, Verlander said, he has the chance for a historic career.

"He's already on the cusp of being a Hall of Famer," Verlander said. "I mean, if he quit today, he might be a Hall of Famer. I mean, it's crazy to say, but I talked about that. Triple Crown, two MVPs, the numbers that he's put up are just sick. And if you look at a lot of times the Hall of Fame, it's like player by decade, and he's been head-and-shoulders the best player in this decade, and he probably will be in the next.

"It's incredible. If he stays healthy, I don't see any reason why he can't be the best hitter of all time."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://alwaysatiger.forumotion.com
 
Record extension makes Miggy a lifelong Tiger
View previous topic View next topic Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
-
» Sergio Garcia makes racist remark when asked about Tiger
» my record Tigerfish in new venue "Lakes around the World" coming soon
» Is Tiger Woods Fading Away?
» Green sets NHL record in Capitals' win over Lightning
» Guess who won the Tiger Cup Golf Challenge???

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
DETROIT TIGER FANS! :: Tiger Talk :: Breaking News-
Jump to: