The Detroit Tigers are one of a few teams that are rebuilding in the American League Central division. In fact, the Cleveland Indians are in second place in the division and, before their four-game sweep of the Kansas City Royals, they were below .500 themselves. Detroit and Kansas City are on their way up while Cleveland and Minnesota are on their way down.
The Tigers have found themselves a few players that could contribute to their team when they are contenders but they still have one glaring hole: shortstop. Zack Short has been their primary shortstop in 2021 and he has a batting average below .150 and OPS jut over .500. None of the other three players that have seen significant time at shortstop have shown a bat that deserves to be in the majors either.
As a result, to potentially contend in 2022 or 2023, they will need a shortstop.
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Perhaps at the top of the 2021-2022 free agent class is Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story.
Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story could be seeing his stocks rise in the free-agent market despite having a sub-par season by his standards. Part of that is because some prospective free agents have already signed long-term deals (e.g. Francisco Lindor) and some have had some inconsistency and baggage surrounding most of their career (e.g. Javier Báez).
Trevor Story will have plenty of potential suitors this offseason and ESPN’s Jeff Passan said recently (around the 52:00 mark) that he believes that the Tigers could be one of the top suitors for Story.
As Passan notes, Houston Astros shortstop Carlos Correa leads all shortstops in WAR but considering his outspokenness about a variety of things (primarily the Astros cheating scandal) and Javier Báez’s recent issues and overall inconsistency, teams like the Detroit Tigers may be looking for a player that has the “quiet intensity” that Trevor Story has and not as much inconsistency and would have as much drama surrounding him.
The Detroit Tigers should be on the list of many teams that will be interested in Trevor Story in a few weeks. But they will still have to pay a premium to lock him up long term.