Rob Parker: Miguel Cabrera is worth the money

By Rob Parker - Sports Columnist
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DETROIT - In honor of the late, great Joe Falls, it's a Fish Fry Friday.
Miguel Cabrera broke the bank on Thursday, reportedly agreeing to sign a cash-heavy eight-year extension.
Including the two years he already had in place, Cabrera's 10-year contract is worth an eye-popping $292 million.
His new deal with the Tigers sent shockwaves through MLB. Some executives from other teams were reportedly disgusted by the amount of money.
And yes, some fans can't believe the money, either.
Too bad.
Cabrera, the reigning two-time American League MVP, is worth every penny. He's currently the best player in the game. Hands down.
Players who perform should be rewarded. It's that simple.
Baseball is healthier than it ever has been. There is plenty of money to go around. This offseason, pitcher Clayton Kershaw got $215 million, an average of $30.7 a season from the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Someone is only worth what someone else is willing to pay them. This country works on a free market system. Can't figure out why most can't understand this concept.
Some movie stars get paid $20 million to make a single picture, working sometimes just three months.
Cabrera, who will be 31 in April, works every day for basically seven months. Hence, $30 million a year isn't outrageous.
An eight-time All-Star in 11 MLB seasons, Cabrera has a lifetime .321 batting average and 365 lifetime home runs.
The Tigers did the right thing.
Despite the fact that Cabrera wouldn't have been a free agent until after the 2015 season, the timing is simple.
The Tigers have taken a public relations hit this offseason as being cheap, downsizing and not willing to spend enough money to win.
Prince Fielder and Doug Fister were traded away. Plus, they weren't able to get a deal done with Max Scherzer.
This deal with Cabrera puts that to rest - for now.

Tigers Not Better

Baseball season is here.
There are plenty of reasons to get excited for the marathon 162-game season, which already kicked off in Australia last week.
Aside from warmer weather, after a brutal Michigan winter, it's the offseason moves that normally get fans juiced up for the upcoming season.
One fan base, however, that shouldn't be excited about the 2014 campaign is the Tigers.
It's not as if the Tigers - who open up on Monday afternoon against the Kansas City Royals at Comerica Park - didn't make moves. It's the exact opposite. GM Dave Dombrowski made moves, big moves.
Sadly, the result is that the team is actually worse than it was a year ago.
Don't forget that the Tigers were picked by most MLB experts to win the World Series in 2013 - they didn't get there. In 2012, they lost to the San Francisco Giants in the Fall Classic.
That team outmuscled and outpitched the rest of the American League.
But that team doesn't exists anymore as the Tigers decided to trim their budget after their $150-million payroll went bust a year ago.
The biggest loss was Fielder. For sure, Fielder had a horrible postseason with no home runs or RBI. Plus, Fielder didn't endear himself with fans after his uncaring comments after the Tigers were eliminated in the American League Championship Series by the Boston Red Sox.
Fielder - and his $215 million contract were sent packing to the Texas Rangers - will be missed, though.
The last two guys that batted in front of the slugger won and an MVP. First, Ryan Braun in Milwaukee in 2011. Then, Cabrera in 2012 and 2013 in Motown.
Pitchers were forced to pitch to Braun and Cabrera with Prince's home run bat waiting on-deck.
That's gone and so is most of the power in the Tigers' lineup. It will be interesting to see how they pitch Cabrera with the powerless Victor Martinez in the four hole.
Plus, the Tigers let go of Jhonny Peralta and Omar Infante, both free agents. Both were .300 hitters.
Dombrowski also unloaded Fister for almost nothing to the Washington Nationals.
Plus, the Tigers have a new manager. Gone is Jim Leyland, who took them to two World Series in eight years. Now, Brad Ausmus is the skipper. He has zero experience. In fact, Ausmus was never even a coach.
Full predictions for the 2014 MLB season on Monday.

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