Trade Details

Date: December 4, 2007

Detroit Tigers acquire

  • Third baseman Miguel Cabrera
  • Left-handed pitcher Dontrelle Willis

Florida Marlins acquire

  • Right-handed pitcher Burke Badenhop
  • Right-handed pitcher Frankie De La Cruz
  • Center fielder Cameron Maybin
  • Left-handed pitcher Andrew Miller
  • Catcher Mike Rabelo
  • Right-handed pitcher Dallas Tahern

3B Miguel Cabrera

The Tigers gave up six of their top young players for Miggy, but could have sent 600 of them to Florida and still wound up feeling comfortable with the decision. Cabrera has won an American League Triple Crown, two AL MVP awards and led the majors in runs batted in since the 2008 season.

LHP Dontrelle Willis

The Tigers built consistently competitive teams around Cabrera, but with no help from Willis. The two-time All-Star simply lost his ability to throw strikes—92 walks in 101 innings for Detroit—and never appeared in the majors after his 30th birthday.

LHP Andrew Miller

The Marlins envisioned Miller as Willis' much younger, much cheaper rotation replacement. Instead, he too struggled to locate his pitches and wound up with the Boston Red Sox just three years later.

CF Cameron Maybin

Maybin's inconsistent bat has turned him into something of a journeyman. He has never earned an All-Star selection or hit more than 10 home runs in a single season.

Trade's Legacy

Despite all of the names involved in the transaction, this simply boils down to the Tigers landing a durable, charismatic superstar player and convincing him to stay with them throughout his prime years. Cabrera will inevitably be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame wearing their cap.
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