Don’t you just hate those people that start their shopping in the summer and are all done by the first week of December?   Well, that pretty much describes Detroit Tigers President Dave Dombrowski.  He started last summer, replacing Jhonny Peralta with a speedy young guy named Jose Iglesias, who snags balls in the infield like my cat Oscar working the bird feeder in my front yard.

Many families have something similar to Major League baseball teams—a spending limit.  Dombrowski needed to find a way to stay under the limit, find a place for top rookie third baseman Nick Castellanos, spruce up his defense at the corners and get a second baseman.   Well, he did all of that with one little shopping trip, trading Prince Fielder to Texas for all-star second baseman Ian Kinsler and moving Miguel Cabrera back to first.

But Tiger fans were still clamoring for their "Red Ryder BB Gun" : A proven bullpen closer.   Dave pulled out his Visa card and signed veteran free agent Joe Nathan.

Then he trimmed the payroll down some more to get a good utility guy and two young left-handers……just after signing Phil Coke left some fans thinking they were getting another lump of coal.

Just one more thing on the list:  A right handed hitting left fielder with speed.  Well Dombrowski now has that too, after signing Rajai Davis.

So, Dave Dombrowski was pretty much done with his shopping, even as the Winter Meetings, usually the Shipshewana of baseball, were barely even underway.  Today he picked up right hander Joba Chamberlain, who could be a big help if he can overcome injuries and regain his form as a dominant right-hander.   Oh sure, there may be a few surprises or stocking stuffers yet to pick up.  Any ideas on what that should be?   It’ll be a very different team.  Can they win it all?

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