With a 6-2 loss to the Minnesota Twins on Saturday, the Detroit Tigers were officially eliminated from postseason contention in 2015. The expectation was that the Tigers would contend with Kansas City for the AL Central, but injuries and ineffectiveness put them in position for a major sell-off at the trade deadline in July. Here are of the key events that led to Detroit's 73-83 record this season:
Miguel Cabrera's injury causes big standings hit
The Tigers were 40-39, six games out of the lead in the AL Central, when Miguel Cabrera went on the disabled list with a strained calf on July 3. Cabrera had been the Tigers' star prior to the injury, hitting .350/.456/.578 with 15 home runs in 77 games before missing nearly six weeks with the injury. Detroit went 15-20 without Cabrera, dropping to 13½ games behind Kansas City in the division and were out of contention by the time he returned.
Major pieces move away from Detroit at the trade deadline
The Tigers went through a major sale in the 48 hours prior to July's trade deadline, trading away a top position player, starter and reliever. The moves started with a trade of David Price to the Blue Jays that was followed by moving Joakim Soria to Pittsburgh and Yoenis Cespedes to the Mets. In return, the Tigers got several prospects, highlighted by pitchers Daniel Norris and Michael Fulmer along with shortstop JaCoby Jones, signaling a rebuild in Detroit.
Dave Dombrowski fired as GM
Less than a week after the trade deadline sell-off, the Tigers fired general manager Dave Dombrowski. He was replaced with assistant GM Al Avila, who looks to be in Detroit's plans for the long term. Despite rumors that Avila was set to fire manager Brad Ausmus, it looks like Ausmus will be the Tigers' manager as 2016 dawns.