The Detroit Tigers may look to add a leadoff hitter during the offseason, reports Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.
Austin Jackson served as the Tigers' primary leadoff hitter this year. The outfielder hit .272/.337/.417 with eight stolen bases, respectable but improvable numbers. Detroit also has a window of opportunity to win over the next few seasons, which could cause them to make an upgrade this winter.
Cafardo lists the top two available leadoff hitters, Jacoby Ellsbury and Shin-Soo Choo, as potential free agent targets for the Tigers. Both players turned in impressive 2013 campaigns; Ellsbury hit .298/.355/.426 with 52 stolen bases, while Choo batted .285/.423/.462 with 20 stolen bases.
One AL general manager discussed the Tigers possibly adding Ellsbury this winter, telling Cafardo:
"We've heard a lot about the Mets, Mariners, Rangers, but the Tigers make perfect sense. They are a big-market team with big resources. There's a relationship with Scott and Mr. Ilitch. They've done business before and there's no reason they can't do business again."
Detroit, however, only has so much money to spend. The team has already handed out expensive contracts to Justin Verlander, Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera, and will need to figure out what to do with Max Scherzer, who will be a free agent after the 2014 season.