- Through trade or free agency, Dombrowski would like to acquire an experienced starting pitcher -- "someone who can help us win" -- and a ninth-inning closer. He called those roles "the two biggest needs we have."
- Unlike a year ago, Dombrowski doesn't see a need to pursue an upgrade in centerfield. In an interview Monday, he spoke highly of Curtis Granderson, who started 39 games in center after his midseason call-up from Triple-A Toledo.
- The biggest roster move involving hitters could be the subtraction of Dmitri Young or Carlos Pena. They are first basemen-designated hitter types on a club where Chris Shelton has established himself at first base.
- Dombrowski said the established members of the starting rotation are Jeremy Bonderman, Mike Maroth and Nate Robertson. The experienced starter sought from elsewhere would take the place of Jason Johnson, who has become a free agent. The remaining spot in the five-man rotation will be saved for a young pitcher such as newcomer Roman Colon or one of the farm system jewels, right-handers Justin Verlander and Joel Zumaya.
- Dombrowski said the Tigers will pursue a second left-hander to join Jamie Walker in the bullpen
- Granderson's arrival, along with a healthy season from the switch-hitting Carlos Guillen, means the Tigers have filled their voids at left-handed hitting.
On the other hand, while upgrading their offense is a less pressing immediate need, I don't think they have enough young healthy hitters to say that they are all set offensively. At the very least, they need to strengthen their bench and replace a right-handed bat with a left-handed bat, although I agree that Granderson and Guillen will help the line-up balance. Their biggest problem offensively has been their inability to stay healthy and with an aging core of hitters I expect that to be a problem again next year. And, as has been the case for the past decade, they also need to get on base more. Dombrowski does address that point in the article but doesn't suggest how they will try to solve it.
In another article by the same writer, the Tigers expressed concern that Dombrowski's right-hand man, Al Avila, may soon find a GM position elsewhere.