With trade talks heating up about Bobby Abreu I thought I would step back and look at what Abreu would bring to the Tigers.
First he would be a left handed power bat that the team in some ways lacks. While I think this problem is lessened by the emergence of Granderson as a good all around hitter. It still is there, given that it is Guillen and Granderson batting left in the everyday lineup.
Second he would bring patience to a team that lacks that. Abreu would have the highest OBP on the team at .450 and would significantly raise the ability of this team to work the count.
Third he would get Craig Monroe out of the everyday lineup. I like Craig. He seems like a nice person but he simply is not getting it done this season.
Lets look at the likely lineup with Abreu in the order:
They might be able to convince Rodriguez or Ordonez to move down in the order. Perhaps Leyland would Abreu at 5.
Lets look at the difference in runs produced. (Assumption that Thames will level off at the .340/.510 level OBP/SLG, I also put Polanco at his career numbers because I think that his start was due to injury .344/.410)
According to lineup analysis (Baseball Musings Lineup Analysis Based on work by Cyril Morong and Ken Arneson) the current lineup without Abreu will produce 5.378 runs per game.
So lets plug the likely lineup with Abreu included, which would be 5.936 runs per game. While the gain seems insignificant at first glance, the difference is actually around 45.198 runs over the second half of the season. That would likely be worth a few extra wins.
BTW according to the site the best lineup would be:
Which would raise more than a few eyebrows but according to the site that lineup would score 6.022 runs per game.
All of this to say that picking up Abreu would help this year. I personally believe that Abreu has the type of skill (great patience) to be productive throughout the rest of his contract. Perhaps not up to 16 million dollars worth but that is another debate altogether.
So depending on the cost to trade for him it would be a good move to make. I am not sure if they will need to deal Sanchez for him but if you believe that Abreu would be enough to push the team over the top then it probably would be.
BTW the lineup analysis site is: