You wonder what all the other GM’s knew that Dave Dombrowski didn’t. The main reason Troy Percival came to Detroit was because we were the only team willing to give him a second year. I was cautiously optimistic when the Tigers signed him although I had come to hope he and Ugueth Urbina would make a solid one-two punch out of the pen.
Now Troy Percival’s left camp. After a rough simulated game, it appears that Percival hasn’t fully recovered from the muscle tear near his elbow and retirement appears likely. It wasn’t that long ago that Troy Percival was one of the most dominant closers in the league and he was celebrating a World Series win with the Angels. And while I’m sure Percival didn’t want to go out like this, he has nothing to be ashamed of after a stellar career.
Another thing I wanted to point out was how tough it is to make preseason predictions. I’ll have my Tiger preview at the Hardball Times here in the next couple of weeks, but at this point last year, we were talking about how bad Alex Sanchez was and how we were stacked with relief pitching. Before spring training broke, Sanchez was gone and by the time the trade deadline passed, all three of our best relievers were either injured or elsewhere.
Magglio Ordonez is going to sit out the World Baseball Classic and said he wanted to focus on getting ready for the 2006 season. I think this is a smart move, although I wouldn’t really blame him for wanting to play for his hometown team, Venezuela. Ordonez’s .436 slugging percentage was his worst season total since 1998, which was the year before he broke out. Hopefully the extra time in spring training will help him find his homerun swing.
Thanks to Ryan for the comment (and I later read this on Detroit Tigers Weblog). It looks like Ordonez will be playing in the WBC. He took some heat from Carlos Guillen, so he’s in.