Paul Wezner, Executive Editor
To be honest and pointing out the obvious, we all know that the primary point of a minor league farm system is to produce talent for the big league club. Few if any players dream of becoming minor league ballplayers, and there's even fewer guys content playing minor league baseball, with no aspirations of making it to the big leagues. And that has been and will remain the Tigers' primary goal when it comes to the farm - developing players to make it to the big leagues. That being said, I'm absolutely disappointed the Tigers didn't get more teams in the postseason this year. The farm clubs playing in the postseason helps these players get additional, pressure-packed experience, and also is a great benefit to the fans and minor league organizations of the teams, without whom there wouldn't be a farm system. Developing talent for the big leagues is always priority one, but hopefully next year the Tigers can get a few more teams into the postseason.
Mark Anderson, Managing Editor
I'm not disappointed in the least. With all due respect to the fans of the minor league affiliates, while winning baseball is nice, it is a luxury at the minor league level. The Tigers -- as do all organizations -- have a singular goal at the minor league level; develop talent. Just because the won-loss record of your local team is difficult to look at, doesn't mean they aren't doing wonderful things for the organization. Talent developing on the field does not always equate to increasing numbers in the win column. The Tigers had a very nice year in terms of talent development, and in many cases they were able to match that with a competitive club on the field; the best of both worlds in prospectdom. The Tigers saw development from pitchers and hitters alike this year, and that is a very good thing; be damned.
Jason Avery, Associate Editor, Amateur Baseball
Certainly it would've been nice to have more than one team qualify for the postseason, but it didn't happen. The short-season rosters are hard to project because of the draft, and who signs and when, so it makes it difficult to see how they'll do. Toledo and Erie posted winning records, so while they didn't make the playoffs, they enjoyed some measure for success, although Lakeland endured a miserable year. Perhaps next year, the Tigers' affiliates will have more in the way of excitement with a shot at the playoffs.
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