3 Tigers Players Who Have a Make-or-Break Season Ahead in 2020
The Detroit Tigers had a 2019 season to forget, finishing the year with the worst record in baseball at 47-115. However, barring an unreal stroke of bad luck, Detroit has nowhere to go but up in 2020 thanks to a busy offseason that improved its roster considerably. But that's only a small part of the equation in Detroit. In order to truly improve this upcoming year, the Tigers will need strong performances from some players who may be at a career crossroads.
With that in mind, here are three Tigers players who are in for make-or-break seasons in 2020.
3. Cameron Maybin
Once one of baseball's top prospects, Cameron Maybin has been one of the most inconsistent players in the bigs since his 2007 debut. And for the most part, he's barely had an impact on any team he's played for. The 32-year-old outfielder showed signs life after the New York Yankees signed him off of the street last season, slashing .285/.364/.494 in 82 games (269 plate appearances). Signed to a one-year, $1.5 million pact this offseason, Maybin will look to carry his 2019 momentum into a 2020 late-career renaissance during his second stint in the Motor City. However, if he's unable to do so, he may not have any suitors when he hits free agency at the end of the year.
2. Jordan Zimmermann
After seven stellar seasons with the Washington Nationals, the Tigers expected big things from Jordan Zimmermann when they signed him to a five-year, $110 million in 2016. Unfortunately for the club, he's failed to even come close to meeting expectations. The 33-year-old righty has been one of the worst pitchers in baseball since coming to Detroit, sporting a 25-41 record with a 5.61 ERA over the last four seasons. Zimmermann enters a contract year in 2020 and if he's unable to prove to the Tigers — and the baseball world, for that matter — that he still has something left in the tank, he could have a hard time finding a new home in the majors for 2021.
1. Miguel Cabrera
Injuries and age have sapped Miguel Cabrera of the All-Star caliber skill set that made him one of the most feared hitters of the last decade, and he could be in for a make-or-break year in 2020 if the injury bug continues to bite. In his last three seasons, the Venezuelan slugger sports an un-Miggy-like .749 OPS and has only hit 31 total homers. To put that homer total in perspective, Cabrera crushed 38 long balls the year before (2016) his rash of injuries began. Now seemingly healthy, Cabrera will have to prove that he can stay that way throughout the 2020 season. However, if injuries continue to hamper him throughout the year, he could decide that enough is enough and finally call it a career.
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Mike Esposito is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Esposito also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username espo6891. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.