The best thing about the 2015 season for the Tigers is the season is over and in the rear view mirror. The 74 wins is the low point. Before last year the Tigers were averaging 91 victories a year from 2011 to 2014. The fate of the Tigers goes back to pitcher Justin Verlander. Last year Justin was just 5-8 with a decent era of 3.28. Arm injuries have held back the former Cy Young & MVP. From 2011 to 2014 Verlander had averaged 17 wins. A healthy Verlander will help get the Tigers back to their winning ways. The signing of FA Jordan Zimmerman was key to solidify the rotation as the number 2 starter. Zimmerman has averaged 32 starts and 14 wins the last 4 years. The other 3 slots were the big question going into Spring Training. Anibal Sanchez is two seasons removed from going 14-8, with a 2.58 era.
Mike Pelfrey and Shane Greene have both pitched very well during Spring Training to earn their spots in the rotation. Tigers new Closer Francisco Rodriquez was 1-3 with the Brewers last year with a 2.21 era and 38 saves! The Tigers are hoping for the same performance in 2016. The Tigers strength is their hitting. Lead by All-World Miguel Cabrera, the Tigers added FA left fielder Justin Upton to a already powerful line-up of J.D. Martinez, Nick Castellanos. The Tigers are very strong defensively up the the middle with Gold Glove caliber SS Jose Iglesias and 2B Ian Kinsler. Switch hitting DH Victor Martinez needs to regain his old form after a down year in 2015 hitting just .240 with 11 home runs and 40 RBI's. The previous 3 years he he over .300 with 157 extra base hits, 89 doubles, 57 home runs and 289 RBI's. Most experts don't expect the Tigers to have much success the season. However I do!!! Over 82.5 Wins -1.35
Click here to view all of RJ Robbins's premium picks.