What do you get the guy who’s done everything?

Detroit Tigers

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.

What do you get the guy who has 3,000-plus hits, 500-plus home runs and a place reserved in Cooperstown in five years?

That question has faced every team the Tigers have visited this year in Miguel Cabrera‘s farewell season. Now that the Tigers are home to wrap up their season, the question facing Miggy is: What do you do with all these retirement gifts?

“After [the Triple Crown] in 2012, I got a lot of stuff,” Cabrera said Tuesday. “It’s all at my house, so I don’t know where I’m going to put all this.”

The gifts range from the comedic to the quirky, from slick to sentimental, regal to redundant. Once the season — and Cabrera’s career — ends, he has to figure out where to put all of them.

“One idea,” Cabrera joked, “is to open a restaurant. Put all this stuff in the restaurant.”

For the last six months, getting them to Detroit has been the responsibility of Tigers clubhouse manager Dan Ross, who has deftly found ways to fit them on the team plane. Framed photos and artwork can tuck in neatly behind a seat, but larger items — such as the saddle that the Texas Rangers gifted — required some creativity. They needed an open seat for that one.

“Miggy doesn’t let these gifts get too far away from him,” manager A.J. Hinch told MLB Network Radio last week. “The funny thing is they will hand [the gift] to [Dan], and Miggy will tell him, ‘Hey, don’t mess this one up. Don’t screw this up.’

“We were joking that we might have to kick a person off our flight in order for the surfboard to have a seat.”

The biggest items — such as the rocking chair from the Nationals, or the bench from the White Sox — were shipped to Cabrera’s home in Florida, oftentimes by the gifting team. The surfboard the Angels gave him a week and a half ago had to wait for an appropriately sized box — it’s 10 feet long — before being shipped. Miggy jokingly asked Hinch if he could take a day off and go to the beach to use it.

Here’s the list of gifts, in order of Tigers road trips this season …

Tampa Bay: Donation to Miguel Cabrera Foundation

Toronto: Photo collage of Cabrera’s 500th career home run from Aug. 22, 2021, at Rogers Centre, presented by Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and longtime teammate/Blue Jays special assistant Victor Martinez

Baltimore: B&O Warehouse brick from Camden Yards and gold plaque, presented by Anthony Santander, manager Brandon Hyde and bench coach Fredi Gonzalez, Cabrera’s final manager with Marlins

Philadelphia: The Detroit panel from out-of-town scoreboard signed by Phillies players and presented by former teammate Nick Castellanos and Ryan Howard. Phillies president of baseball operations and former Tigers president/GM Dave Dombrowski presented him with a photo collage of some of their greatest moments together.

Colorado: Florida and Detroit panels from Coors Field’s out-of-town scoreboard, two-night stay at The Broadmoor resort in Colorado Springs, presented by Rockies manager Bud Black and bench coach Mike Redmond, his former teammate in Miami

Pittsburgh: Artwork featuring Cabrera and Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente crossing Pittsburgh’s Clemente Bridge, presented by Jim Leyland and Pirates bench coach Don Kelly

Boston: Number 24 panel from Fenway Park’s manual scoreboard and donation to foundation

Los Angeles Angels: Custom surfboard featuring Cabrera’s career feats, presented by Albert Pujols, Mike Trout and Phil Nevin

So which ones did Cabrera particularly like?

“I liked the jacket [from Milwaukee],” Cabrera said. “The surfboard from Anaheim was pretty cool. The Yankees signs. The brick from Baltimore was cool. People don’t know the history about that. The number in Boston was really cool, too. That’s special because they have a lot of history behind them. Minnesota was pretty nice, too. The painting with Roberto Clemente is one of the best.

“All the gifts they give to me are something special, so it’s hard to say this one’s my favorite.”

It wasn’t just the gifts that resonated.

“He’s just as touched at the people,” Hinch said. “Pujols [in Anaheim] was really, really cool for him. The group in Miami, it meant a ton to him, the people that he’s getting to see. Manny [Ramirez] was in Cleveland. Mauer, Morneau [in Minnesota]. There are a lot of people that are paying their respects to him, and that’s really cool.”

One more round of gifts awaits this weekend, this time at Comerica Park during Miggy Appreciation Weekend. In addition to gifts from the team, the players came together for retirement gifts as a thank you.

Articles You May Like

Royals 10, Tigers 3: Casey Mize gets KC barbecued
Pennsylvania Lottery Online Plays
Mets Claim Ty Adcock From Tigers
Tigers Notes: Maeda, Manning, Hopkins, Garko
Tigers vs. D-backs Game Highlights (5/19/24) | MLB Highlights

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *