A (Triple) Crown for a King

In the post Lou-and-Tram era, there has never been a hitter with this much potential to take a run at the Triple Crown. While the chances of winning one of baseball’s most famous titles is extremely rare (15 all-time winners over 130-plus years), there are very few players built both mentally and physically to take a run at the title. Miguel Cabrera looks like a whole different player this season, and with a 20-20 vision at the plate, Tigers fans may be witnessing one of the finest hitting seasons in recent memory.

Ty Cobb in 1909 hit .377 with 9 HR and 107 RBI, making him the only Tigers hitter to this point to have won the Triple Crown. Cobb is one of those names that oozes baseball history. While I would never compare the skills of Ty Cobb to those of Miguel Cabrera, both men mean a great deal to their respective clubs. For a team that gave up so much to get him from the Marlins, Cabrera has delivered and more.

However, the downfall for Cabrera will be twofold – he is not necessarily known for hitting for real high averages and he doesn’t have enough hitters around him in the lineup. To address the first point, he is a power hitter and his job is to provide a home run threat when he gets to the plate. The magic for the year that we saw with Magglio Ordonez taking the batting title a few years back, was that he had a mix of hitting for power to go along with his onslaught on the average title.

The lack of hitters around Cabrera has been bettered by having a masher like Brennan Boesch in the lineup, but he doesn’t have the same protection like other potential Triple Crown candidates. Joe Mauer and Robinson Cano are legitimate contenders and they are surrounded by great hitters around them. If Cabrera is to take that next step towards the Triple Crown, he is going to need big seasons out of his fellow Tigers sluggers.