As the 2014 MLB season races down the stretch, with a number of teams still in playoff contention, there is a member of the Detroit Tigers who has a strong case for second or third place in the American League MVP race behind Mike Trout.
That member of the Tigers is not named Miguel Cabrera.
Designated hitter/first baseman Victor Martinez has been outstanding once again in 2014. Through 145 games he is batting .330/.380/.470 with 26 home runs and 85 RBI. That is good for 3.8 WAR, according to Baseball Reference. The Tigers are in a battle for the American League Central despite a recent swoon, and Martinez is a big reason why they are still relevant.
When the dust from this year’s playoff races has settled, Martinez will be set to hit free agency. When he does, he will surely be a top priority for the Tigers, and possibly a candidate for a qualifying offer. Plenty of other teams will be inquiring as well, understanding the huge boost that could come from adding the switch-hitting slugger.
Count the Chicago White Sox among those teams that will be interested, according to Bruce Levine.
MLB source-White Sox will be players in Tigers Victor Martinez free agent derby this fall.Story @670TheScore
— Bruce Levine (@MLBBruceLevine) August 30, 2014
As the White Sox stumble to end of the Adam Dunn/Paul Konerko era, they will try to re-inject some life into their roster to build another lineup that can thump with the best of them. As for Martinez, he would potentially go from hitting behind Miguel Cabrera to hitting behind Jose Abreu.
Martinez has served notice the past two seasons to anybody who forgot what a quality hitter he was. That will put him in high demand this winter as a free agent.
Be sure to stay tuned to FanSided for all of the latest MLB news, rumors, and analysis as the 2014 season heads towards the playoff stretch.