Szymborski: The Detroit Tigers discovered their nadir in 2019

From Dan Szymborski at FanGraphs on September 5, 2019:

The Baltimore Orioles may have kicked off this year’s set of team elegies, but the Detroit Tigers are now the favorite to finish the 2019 season with baseball’s worst record. That possibility is hardly earth-shattering –practically everyone knew that when Detroit’s window finally shut, part of the deal was that pieces of glass would fly everywhere.

Did the 2010s Detroit Tigers do enough to be considered a dynasty? Dynastic ambition is largely in the eyes of the beholder. As amusing as I find the idea personally, the BBWAA doesn’t hold a decennial vote on a team’s dynasty status and then confer jewels and a royal scepter on teams that receive 75% of the vote. I would suggest that the Tigers were at least a mini-dynasty by virtue of them being one of the league favorites to start the season several years in a row and winning four consecutive division titles, all while relying on essentially the same core of players. (The World Series requirement has always seemed a little unrealistic in modern baseball given that the postseason is largely a crapshoot as a result of its structure.)

Whether a dynasty, a mini-dynasty, or simply a good team that crushed a weak division for a while, it’s over. The Tigers are now the crushees rather than the crusher.

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Originally published: September 6, 2019. Last Updated: September 6, 2019.