By Mike Ilitch

Hi all, Mike Ilitch here, owner of the Detroit Tigers, Detroit Red Wings, and Little Caesars™ pizza. I am having some financial difficulties, and could really use your help. Recently, I was balancing my checkbook, and realized I was somehow losing money owning the Tigers. My people tell me we want to be in the black, not the red, but our colors are navy and orange. I just don’t know where I went wrong. I figured selling bacon on a stick to metro Detroiters would be more than enough to cover Justin Upton‘s contract.

Don’t get me started on this team’s performance. Somehow I am spending $200 million on these guys and they miss the playoffs two years in a row. It’s so much easier owning the Red Wings; they manage to be in the playoffs 25 years in row and they are full of losers. Nevertheless, my budget is where it is. I’ve tried eating out less, clipping coupons, and turning off the lights when I leave a room, but I’m afraid I face some tough decisions this winter. I see my choices as the following:

Trade Justin Upton
Pros: His $132.75 million contract would be off the books. In hindsight, signing this guy to a six-year contract when I was only giving the team one more year to contend was a bad idea. It’s like when you’re wife tells you to go on a diet, and you do fine for a few days until you eat an entire Little Caesars™ pizza. His great second half might convince another team to take a chance on him.
Cons: No more Kate Upton jokes.

Trade Justin Verlander
Pros: Trading JV will never get you a better return than it will now. He had a Cy Young-worthy season, and his contract isn’t seeming so bad all of a sudden. A 6.6 bWAR player can fetch you a lot of prospects in return.
Cons: No more Kate Upton jokes.

Trade Miguel Cabrera
Pros: Not only would we save money on his $300 million contract, but we would save money on the $300 million golden statue we were planning on building for him.
Cons: My fans would never forgive me. I’d hate to have my legacy ruined at the end of my life. “CoPa” would start reminding fans of “JoePa.”

Trade Victor Martinez
Pros: Boston needs a new designated hitter — I could call up my old whipping boy Dave Dombrowski and convince him to take him off my hands.
Cons: Would only break even after spending the money to change J.D. Martinez‘ jerseys from his full name to just “Martinez”.

Die; have my son sell the team to Dan Gilbert
Pros: Not my problem anymore.
Cons: I would be dead.

Please leave your advice in the comments section.

Thank you,

Your friend Mike

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