a four-year hiatus, Al Telgenhof returned to BRASSball as an owner/GM.
Telgenhof was an owner in the league’s inaugural season, drafting the
Charlevoix franchise. The Cutters, as the team was known, won 100 games and the NL
Central title in ’95 and won 92 games in ‘96.
wasted no time putting his stamp on the team, trading starters 1B John Olerud
and 2B Ray Durham to Columbus for 2B Ron Belliard, OF Daryle Ward and minor
league 1B Dernell Stenson. Just
prior to the free agent period, Charlevoix sent prospect OFs Larry Bigbie and
Aaron Rowand to Plaza for closer Matt Anderson.
looking to get younger and to bring in some of our own guys,” Telgenhof
explained. “The first deal gave
us the chance to do both. We
trimmed payroll by moving Olerud and Durham and pick up young talent with Ward
and Stenson. We may use some of
that money to lure some free agents here.”
continued, “The second deal was to upgrade our pen. I saw that as the major weakness of the organization.”
free agency, the club targeted players believed to be undervalued.
The Tigers didn’t show interest in the marquee players available.
primary focus was filling the 1B spot vacated by Olerud.
Charlevoix inked Brad Fullmer to a three-year deal.
Frank Thomas was re-signed for four years at a reduced price.
Wilson was brought in to catch. Rusty
Greer, another bargain, was signed to fill a corner OF spot.
Wil Cordero was signed to provide ABs.
the pitching side, the Tigers re-signed reliever Kerry Ligtenberg and inked
southpaws Denys Reyes and Jesus Sanchez.
free agency, lefty reliever Doug Creek was traded for shortstop Deivi Cruz.
prognosis for 2002 isn’t good. The
offense consists mostly of filler, with the notable exceptions of Berkman and
Thomas. Greer, Fullmer and Guillen
are solid, but not spectacular.
pitching, usually an emphasis on Telgenhof’s teams, is thin.
Jimmy Anderson and Omar Daal are the only reliable (using the term
loosely) starters signed for 2002. Rick Ankiel is still talented but unproven.
Brian Bohanon can eat innings but is ineffective.
Jason Schmidt wanted too much money to return to the Tigers so he is
of the guys we have now won’t be here when we are ready to compete.
We know that.” Telgenhof confessed.
“Some will be trade bait but hopefully we’re building something for