Javier Baez must make adjustments to be more of a factor in Detroit's offense.
Once again, the high-priced Detroit Tigers infielder, Javier Baez, is grappling with difficulties in delivering the expected offensive performance that the team had anticipated when they signed him to a lucrative six-year, $140 million contract. Manager A.J. Hinch has made it clear that Baez will need to make essential adjustments to his game if he has any intention of living up to his deal.
The struggles of Javier Baez continued in 2023
Baez, who is set to earn a remaining total of $98 million over the next four years, currently finds himself at the bottom of the pack among qualified batters, occupying the 135th position in wRC+ for the ongoing season, which places him dead last in the majors. Furthermore, in his 134 appearances in 2023, he has mustered just nine home runs and 58 RBIs.
A.J. Hinch stated that Baez must make adjustments
In a recent interview on “The Stoney and Jansen Show” on 97.1 The Ticket earlier this morning, A.J. Hinch conveyed that Baez is fully cognizant of his current situation. Baez recognizes that he must make substantial adjustments to his performance if he intends to become a significant contributor to Detroit's offense, which is precisely what he is being generously compensated for.
“He's very aware of where he sits,” Hinch said. “He’s looking around at some good young talent that’s pushing him out of the middle of the order. If he wants to factor in more and be a big bat in the middle, obviously some adjustments need to be made.”
TL;DR (too long didn't read)
- Javier Baez has not met the expectations that accompanied his substantial six-year, $140 million contract
- He's ranked dead last among qualified batters this season with wRC+.
- Tigers manager A.J. Hinch alluded to the possibility of Baez's spot in the lineup being in jeopardy during his appearance on 97.1 The Ticket, emphasizing that Baez must make the required adjustments to secure his position.
Bottom Line: Will Baez adjust?
The signing of Baez to the expensive contract does indeed appear to be a significant misstep by former GM Al Avila, who faced numerous challenges during his time in Detroit.
As for Baez's chances of rediscovering his form and becoming a regular contributor to the Tigers, it largely depends on his ability to make the necessary adjustments to his performance. Baseball is a sport where players can go through slumps and then bounce back, so there is always hope for improvement. However, given his current struggles and the high expectations associated with his contract, Baez will need to work diligently to regain his offensive prowess and contribute consistently to the team.