At 86 years old, Detroit Tigers owner Mike Ilitch wants to finally win a championship before he dies. As he put it from his deathbed, “I’ve lived a good, successful life. But, it will all be worthless without a title. Money is no option. I want to win. I want to win now. No matter what.”
The Tigers have made major strides this offseason in what hopes to be a complete turnaround from last year’s division worst record and it makes sense that they’ve added so many pieces after hearing these comments. They’ve added pitching (Jordan Zimmerman and Daniel Norris), signed all-star outfielder Justin Upton, revamped their bullpen, but now, in what surely is the craziest signing of all time, Ilitch has agreed to pay an actual Tiger to play center field.
When asked about the unconventional signing, Ilitch answered “We think he [the tiger]can do a lot for us right now. We’re paying him to be out here and help us get back to our roots as a winning team. We’ve got high hopes.”
It’s been a crazy nine months in what all started with the team’s original fire sale during last July’s trade deadline, which saw a bevy of stars get traded for meek returns, but what the billionaire Ilitch says, goes. And he says the tiger will play.
Some have speculated Ilitch’s move is a direct overreaction from Cameron Maybin’s (the Tigers original centerfielder) wrist injury that will cost him, at least, all of April. When asked who he thought was the better choice to play, Maybin refused to answer, perhaps due to fear of being mauled by his new feline teammate. The fact is though, the Tiger (no known name), will act as the team’s starting center fielder to start the season, as well as bat leadoff. Scouts aren’t too sure what to make of his abilities yet, but from what they can tell, he’s has elite speed, is crazy aggressive and may just be crazy enough to help the Tigers get back to winning. And if there’s one thing owner Mike Ilitch wants, it’s to win, no matter what.
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