It is the question that has been debated in baseball circles all over the metro Detroit area.
How did the Detroit Tigers whiff on infielder Isaac Paredes?
Manager A.J. Hinch was asked on Wednesday morning by 97.1 The Ticket about the stellar success Paredes has achieved unlocking his power, now that he is a member of the Tampa Bay Rays.
Hinch replied, "He's having a tremendous first half. I think if anything, we always evaluate what we've seen in players while they've been on our watch, and then when they go somewhere else and what they do. Number one, we knew Isaac Paredes was a good player. Before I got here, how hyped up he was. He'd come up a couple of different times. He had never hit for power. To me, the curiosity is like, 'What did they (Rays) unlock that allowed him to hit for that full power?'"
Since joining the Rays via trade, Paredes has been demonstrating power from the left side of the plate, something he was not demonstrating in Detroit.
With the Tigers, Paredes was attempting to carve the ball a little bit more, and attempted to get his OPS elevated to high levels by hitting doubles and getting on base.
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With the Rays, Paredes is swinging for the fences, and with success.
"It makes you think about how we didn't untap the power," Hinch said. "I think that's where we look internally and see, 'What did we see? What did we not see?' He hadn't hit for that kind of power in the minor leagues or the big leagues in our organization. You know, you wish him well. I didn't love the two homers he hit against us."
Hinch disputes that team is not developing players
As a result of the lopsided trade, critics of the trade that sent Austin Meadows to Detroit and Paredes to the Rays have pointed to just how well Tampa Bay develops players, as opposed to the struggles of the Tigers in doing the same.
Hinch disagreed with that assessment, and noted, "We've got a number of home grown guys on this team. The draft and the Rule 5 with (Akil) Baddoo. Like that was pretty smart developing the young kids that we've had. The right picks at the top of the draft, with Riley (Greene) and Tork (Spencer Torkelson). Willi Castro is developing right in front of our eyes, even if it's going to be (as) a utility player."
The interview concluded with Hinch describing a little further what questions the Tigers' front office and coaching staff could ask, in regard to what has occurred with Paredes.
"I think we have to figure out, was it something as simple as changing his sight line of trying to get him to pull the ball more? I think with our organization, he carved the ball a little bit more, tried to be a good hitter," Hinch said. "He wanted to hit .300. Wanted to get his OPS in the .800s by getting doubles. He looks like he's launching to left field way more than I saw here. Even some of the balls last year with us, he'd swing as hard as he could and hit the ball to the warning track. It wasn't for whatever reason -- he didn't barrel balls and get balls over 100 mph exit velocity, which generally those guys that hit the ball out of the ballpark do."