Posts Tagged ‘Detroit’

Gio Gonzalez would be a good fit at the Tigers, but only at the right price. The left-hander ranked ninth in the AL in strikeouts and 10th in ERA in 2011. (Google image)

The Oakland A’s are willing to part with Gio Gonzalez, and the Tigers have been rumored to be one of the teams interested in acquiring the 26-year old left-handed pitcher.

Gonzalez would no doubt be a good acquisition for the Tigers. He would give them a much-needed lefty for their rotation and would also address their need for a fifth starter. Gonzalez has had a strong past couple of seasons for the Athletics. He ranked 16-12 and ranked ninth in the American League with 197 strikeouts and 10th with a 3.12 ERA and was an All-Star last season. Gonzalez was better pitcher at home last season with an ERA that was almost a run better at the Oakland Coliseum than on the road. Still he has a 38-32 career record and a 3.93 ERA in four seasons.

Nick Castellanos appears to be the long-term solution for the Tigers at third base and Detroit shouldn't include him in a deal to acquire Gio Gonzalez. (B. Calloway photo)

Oakland will definitely require a good package in dealing Gonzalez, and it is rumored the Tigers would have to part with top prospects right-handed pitcher Jacob Turner andĀ  third baseman Nick Castellanos and a few other pieces to acquire him. If the Tigers could enticeĀ  the Athletics without including Castellanos would and should be the only way they make such a deal.

After trading third baseman Francisco Martinez, who appeared in the 2011 Futures Game, to Seattle in the deal that landed Doug Fister, the Tigers pretty much determined Castellanos would be their guy at third base when he was ready – which could be sometime in 2013 or 14. Third base is a current position of need for the Tigers and the 19-year old Castellanos seems as if he could be a long-term solution when he is ready.

I don’t blame the Athletics for wanting both of the Tigers top prospects, but Turner would be a lot easier to part with considering the depth of pitching Detroit has in the upper portion of its system. Detroit also has Andrew Oliver, Casey Crosby, Drew Smyly, Duane Below and Adam Wilk and could maybe part with Turner and another pitcher among with something else in a deal. Detroit also has great depth at catcher (Rob Brantly, Jeff Kunkel) that they could deal as well.

With wide interest in Gonzalez, the price will understandingly be high, but the Tigers shouldn’t give up Castellanos in a deal to acquire the lefty.

The Pistons are nearing the official halfway point of a season that has been filled with plenty of disappointments.

From their third quarter struggles, to blowing big leads to still not having any consistent starting group or rotation through 38 games, its clear second-year coach John Kuester doesn’t have a clue.

Wednesday’s 107-99 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies further illustrated the mess that the Pistons have become. The team used yet a different starting lineup, was unable to sustain and build upon an early lead in yet another setback. In addition, one of the franchise’s all-time leading scorers in Rip Hamilton failed to play based on Kuester’s decision.

Rip Hamilton (left) and Pistons coach John Kuester talk on the phone during a game last season. Kuester didn't play Hamilton in Detroit's 107-99 loss to the Grizzlies on Wednesday.

While the different starting lineups and blowing leads have been the norm this season for the Pistons, Kuester deciding not to even play Hamilton without an explanation at all when he was healthy and ready to go is ridiculous and disrespectful. He and Tayshaun Prince were very adamant about their thoughts on the situation.

“I think that’s the first time in my career that I’ve put on my jersey and didn’t play,” Hamilton told reporters following the game. “No one warned me about it. I was completely surprised. Do I think it was a level of disrespect or unfair or anything like that? I’ll leave that to y’all.”

Prince, who along with Hamilton and Ben Wallace were members of the Pistons’ 2004 NBA championship team, added his thoughts.

“Buffoonery,” Prince said about the Hamilton situation. “Do you all know what that means?”

Hamilton has been the subject of trade rumors for some time now and those have heated up over the past week with him rumored to be headed to New Jersey in a deal centering around Carmelo Anthony. Its customary for teams to usually rest a player when a trade could potentially get done that night, but this was not the case at all as noted by Kuester following the game.

Kuester acknowledged about wanting to shorten the rotation, but he should have definitely found some playing time for Hamilton, especially after the team was unable to sustain a fast start. Hamilton could have gotten time in the guard spot in place of Ben Gordon, who has struggled from the floor for a good portion of the season. Gordon struggled most of Wednesday night until heating up at the end of the third quarter.

While its clear Hamilton isn’t the player he was a few years ago and that time has caught up to him, he is still among the better options on this steam and should play if available. There was no reason to sit him and treating a veteran player like that and not providing an explanation is no good way to go about business.

It’s clear Hamilton’s marriage with the Pistons could be ending soon, but Kuester should a least continue playing him until he is no longer on the roster.