Paul Wezner, Executive Editor
At the beginning of the season, I marveled at the fact that despite the Tigers having such an active off-season there were still so many question marks. Some were answered emphatically (the Tigers are just fine at catcher, thank you very much) and some disappointed (*cough* starting pitching besides Justin Verlander *cough*). Due to those concerns, I pegged the Tigers for an 82-80 record and third place in the AL Central. The Tigers have out-paced those expectations a bit and have benefited from the other expected division contenders struggling. At this point, I'm cautiously optimistic the Tigers will out-pace my initial prediction, however, I'm not confident that will happen, and I think much of it could depend on how active the Tigers are around the deadline, and if they are able to find upgrades in the positions in the most need, primarily starting pitching at third base. Without a deal imminent or even expected, I tend to believe sticking with my initial prediction is the best way to go.
Mark Anderson, Managing Editor
Before the season began, I stated the following in another TigsTown Roundtable:
"I think the Tigers will be a competitive club, but they will need health and a little luck to truly contend for the top spot in the division. In the end, I think they get some of what they need to compete, tease their fans with a nice run at some point, but ultimately end up around 82-84 wins this year."
In reality, I don't think I'm too far off from that assertion, and I haven't seen anything to suggest I should change my tune. The Tigers have gotten stellar performances from Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez, Jose Valverde, Alex Avila and Justin Verlander, and horrific performances from Brandon Inge and Ryan Raburn, while other players like Austin Jackson, Max Scerzer, and Rick Porcello are just meandering along. That's a pretty fine recipe for a .500 ball club and that's ultimately where the Tigers are headed if they don't make any major moves to improve the club in the second half. For once, it looks like I took stock in what the club had on the roster and where it might head, and accurately predicted how things could play out.
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