.220/.281/.296. This is the collective slash line (AVG/OBP/SLG) for Detroit Tigers shortstops this year. Despite ranking among the top two or three offenses in the league, the Tigers’ contributions from its shortstops ranks dead last in the majors in terms of OPS.
.219/.268/.271. Tigers shortstop Andrew Romine’s contribution to that awful slash line in 77 games and 227 plate appearances. He has 9 RBI for the entire season. NINE. Nelson Cruz collected 7 RBI on Sunday in a single game.
.191/.265/.202. Romine’s slash line with runners on base. Awful. But wait for it…
.182/.182/.227. The slash line for Tigers pitchers in 2014. In case you forgot, the Tigers are an American League team.
.143/.208/.143. Romine’s slash line with runners in scoring position. Yes, to clarify, that is a slugging percentage of ONE-FOUR-THREE. So combine general terribleness with incredible anti-clutchness and you get Andrew Romine. THIS…is how you end up with 9 RBI for an entire season.
Tigers starting shortstop Andrew Romine is currently on pace to hit .179/.256/.192 (yes, that is a slugging percentage of .192 to accompany his career slugging percentage of .247) with 101 strikeouts in 316 ABs and 8 RBI. EIGHT. This is all after the incumbent Jose Iglesias got hurt and Alex Gonzalez couldn’t hit OR play defense. Romine can pick it at short, I’ll give him that, but the Tigers are winning despite basically trotting out a National League lineup on a nightly basis (Romine being the equivalent of a pitcher).
Can it really be that hard to upgrade on Romine? (I didn’t think it was worth the resources to chase Stephen Drew, so I was relieved to hear he re-signed with the Red Sox today. I’ve wanted to write about his contract situation and the fact that his own greed backfired in his face…but really it just looks like Drew’s agent Scott Boras severely underestimated the impact of the draft pick that any team signing Drew would have to sacrifice. But who knows…maybe Boras warned Drew that this would happen and it really was his greed that did him in.) Um…does Tigers management realize they have one of the best defensive shortstops of all time on the field every night? I’m talking about the Tigers’ first base coach, Omar Vizquel. Now, I think the Tigers joked about this possibility back in spring training, but now that we know how bad the alternatives look, could a 46-year-old Vizquel really be that bad of an option? While Vizquel at his age probably couldn’t match Romine’s range or arm, Omar could probably play at least a passable short even if he were 60. And I’m 100% certain Vizquel would be an offensive upgrade over Romine. And more importantly, this would be fun! He can be fantasy eligible at both SS and 1BC (1st Base Coach). And the Tigers are all about fun:
Most importantly, Omar Vizquel just seems like such a nice guy. He has such a nice smile. I just want to be his friend.