I was snooping around ESPN's stats database looking at Tiger rookie Eugenio Suarez's stats. He's hitting .260 with some power, but hasn't been great defensively. His glove-work gives him a defensive Wins Above Replacement of -0.3, but the hitting and baserunning brings his overall WAR to 0.0 on the nose.
Statistically, that makes Suarez the quintessential replacement, the guy you promote from the minors or pick off your bench to sub for an injured starter. Jose Iglacias was supposed to be the Tigers' shortstop of the future, but he's been on the shelf with double shin splints for this season.
The Tigers will have an interesting decision with Suarez this off season. Is he on a track to being a good but not great shortstop? If so, other teams with a hole at shortstop (the Yankees have a gaping hole with Jeter's retirement that Suarez might fit if they want a budget replacement) might be interested in trading a comparable prospect at another position for him.
If he's looking more like a utility infielder, Suarez might morph into a super-sub with more pop in his bat than the stock banjo-hitting UI. A younger Omar Infante comes to mind on that front. If Iglacias, with his .300 batting average and glove-work that brings echoes of Ozzie Smith and new Tiger coach Omar Visquel, is back to form for 2015, Suarez might be forced into that super-sub role.
Dave Dombrowski will have some skull-sweat over Mr. Suarez this winter, but it will be a good problem to have, unlike having to figure how much of Mike Illich's fortune to spend on Max Scherzer.