Will Tigers benefit from Schoop’s infield shuffle?

This story was excerpted from Jason Beck’s Tigers Beat newsletter. To read the full newsletter, click here. And subscribe to get it regularly in your inbox.

DETROIT — Jonathan Schoop was an AL Gold Glove Award finalist at second base. He not only led all Major League second basemen in Outs Above Average, Statcast’s primary defensive metric, he led all Major League defensive players in the category. He had twice as many Outs Above Average as the next-best second baseman. He made second base one of just three positions where the Tigers had a positive number in Defensive Runs Saved, another defensive metric from Sports Info Solutions.

So why would the Tigers consider moving Schoop off of second base? Because if the Tigers are going to get better, they have to think about their entire infield, which needs a lot of help aside from second base.

While Detroit’s decision last week to non-tender third baseman Jeimer Candelario didn’t come as a surprise given Candelario’s struggles this past season, it also didn’t come with an obvious solution for a replacement. Ryan Kreidler made 11 of his 22 starts at third base as part of his late-season audition and registered 2 Outs Above Average in that limited time, but he also hit just .178 (13-for-73) with six walks and 22 strikeouts in 84 plate appearances. Kody Clemens also made 11 starts at third and posted 1 Out Above Average, but hit just…

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