The first official change for the Tigers next season came today when Placido Polanco agreed to a 3-year deal with the Philadelphia Phillies. The deal is reportedly worth $18 million, and he will be their third baseman!
I'm going to miss Polly, and not just because I could have used the "Along Came Polly" photoshop whenever he came up big in wins (which was a lot). He had one hell of a bat. He exemplified amazing plate discipline and often times, you'd think the barrel of his bat was the size of his head. In addition to his steady dose of offense, he played the second base position about as solid as you could expect from a video game second basemen. He went an entire season without making an error and had just two this past season. Amazing.
I understand that the Tigers couldn't afford an $18 million contract for him, especially since he's undoubtedly headed for the downturn of his career. But if people think Scott Sizemore is going to come in and be Detroit's new 2B and play up to Polanco's level, they are sadly mistaken. I have a pang in my stomach that people in Detroit are going to have a rude wake up call next season when Polly is not at 2B.
In his four and a half seasons with the Tigers, he hit a solid .311 with an OBP around .355. He knocked 139 doubles, 37 home runs, and brought home 285 runs. He only made 19 errors with the Tigers (Chase Utley's made 25 in the past two seasons for comparitive purposes).
The only negative part about Polanco's time in Detroit was his 0-17 showing in the 2006 World Series. Other than that, he was everything you could have possibly asked for, and the Tigers would have never made it to that World Series without him.
We'll miss you, Polly. So long.