Monday, July 31, 2006

Tigers Acquire Casey, Demote Shelton

As most of you know, the Tigers acquired Sean Casey from the Pirates today for minor league pitcher Brian Rogers. To make room for Casey, Chris Shelton was optioned to Toledo. Casey is batting .296/.377/.408 in 213 at bats this year. His career numbers are .304/.371/.461 in 10 seasons. He has had some good seasons such as his .324/.381/.534 campaign in 2004 for the Reds. However, he has been inconsistent from year to year with several seasons below an .800 OPS which is sub-par for a first baseman. His overall stats this year are not an upgrade over Shelton who is hitting .283/.350/.482. In fact, Shelton has a better OPS - .832 versus .785. However, Shelton has struggled most of the year batting .244/.318/.353 since April 18. Casey also has a reputation as a good fielder although Billfer points out that his statistics suggest otherwise:

Casey brings in a 371 career OBP, and he’s at .377 this year. He doesn’t bring much power to the position with only a .408 slugging percentage. Defensively he’s below average at -4 fielding runs above average. But he does provide a left handed bat, and in an interview today on WXYT he sounded absolutely giddy. Casey is in the last year of his current contract and is making $8.5 million.

Chris Shelton of course has been struggling. His offensive numbers for the season are still better than Casey’s and he has 7 fielding runs above average.


The 24 year old Brian Rogers is a right-handed middle relief prospect who is having a good season for Erie posting a 2.39 ERA with a 69/14 K/BB ratio in 64 innings pitched. He is not regarded as a top prospect but has had two excellent seasons in a row as a reliever. Last year, he had an ERA of 2.06 and a 65/21 K/BB ratio in 65.2 innings for Lakeland.

Shelton will go down to Toledo to work with Leon Durhan on his batting. Shelton has really struggled the last few months but hopefully his career can be salvaged. I, for one, am not ready to give up on him. Regardless of how one feels about his performace this year, it's sad to see him get sent down. He carried the team the first couple of weeks of the year which makes him an important part of this magical season. It would be a shame if he was not on the post-season roster. However, between Casey and Dimitri Young, there is a fairly high probability of an injury. So, if Shelton hits in Toledo, he may be back soon enough.

3 comments:

  1. I'm willing to give the Tigers the benefit of a doubt on the Casey acquisition. So many things have gone so right this year, that this could end up working out just fine.

    However, I agree that it's sad to see Shelton get sent down. We all knew that he'd cool down and come back to Earth after the red hot start, but I can't imagine that anyone would've predicted he'd be in Toledo by the beginning of August.

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  2. I think the best thing about the move is that Shelton can go down to Toledo and get himself straightened out. I think he'll get another shot when Young or Casey gets hurt.

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  3. I also think it'll be good for him.

    I just hope that he does get recalled before September 1st so that he can be eligible for the post-season roster. If Young deserves a second chance at 2006, Shelton certainly does!

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