Monday, July 31, 2006

Casey Arrives

I'm fine with the Detroit Tigers acquisition of Sean Casey. (I know Dave Dombrowski will sleep well knowing his trade deadline deal meets with my approval.) I think Casey, a guy who often hits close to .300, still has some hits left in him. He's the left handed stick some have been longing for. Casey's arrival didn't force the Tigers to sell off their farm system, either. Nor are they tied to him beyond this season. Besides, I've always liked Casey and it sounds like he's excited about getting into a pennant chase. What's not to embrace about this deal?

Well, there's the opposite side of the coin. I'm not as happy about seeing Chris Shelton get demoted. The book on Shelton was always "he can't run, can't field, can't throw, but he can hit". After years of pounding the baseball in the minors, to see Shelton's bat fail him after probably his greatest April ever is disappointing. It's must be difficult for Shelton to head back to AAA when his teammates are all in the middle of the best Tigers regular season in over twenty years.

In spite of feeling bad for Shelton, this trade does make me believe the Tigers are thinking about only one thing--winning. They decided to let Shelton work out of his funk at Toledo, figuring Casey's bat will return to it's usual pace, instead of letting Red Pop struggle with a team looking for a division title. You either perform or go. For now, Casey gets a chance to produce and Shelton has to earn his way back to Comerica Park. Hopefully, he makes it back for good next time.

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