Detroit News predictions: Will Tigers make the playoffs?
Rod Beard: The second half looks daunting, especially without Miguel Cabrera until mid-August. The Tigers haven't struggled as much on offense without Cabrera; the starting pitching and bullpen have been the bugaboos. Still, they're in contention for a wild card. But The road is filled with potholes and their Central Division and playoff streaks will end.
Lynn Henning: The playoff streak stops at four. There hasn't been enough pitching or enough health. Close games a true playoff team would have won have washed away. The focus steadily will turn toward next season, and to a team's overall pitching needs.
Chris McCosky: No. It's not impossible, of course. The Royals were 50-50 last season before taking off. But with Miguel Cabrera out until the middle of August, at least, with only 2 1/2 reliable starting pitchers (jury is still out on Justin Verlander) and the bullpen as unstable as ever, it'd be asking a lot for this team to make an abrupt turnaround just a couple weeks before the trade deadline.
John Niyo: It's going to take a lot to escape the pack of AL wild-card contenders. A big second half from Justin Verlander and Miguel Cabrera's healthy return, for starters. Probably a trade-deadline theft similar to 2011 as well. But in the end, I don't think they'll have what it takes.
Bob Wojnowski: Yes. It'll be ugly and arduous, but they'll grab a wild card the old-fashioned way, with improved starting pitching. The key is Justin Verlander, and if his command in his last outing in Minnesota was real, Detroit's chances are real. David Price is a given, and at least one other starter — Anibal Sanchez or a trade acquisition — must rise and Joakim Soria can't fall. The hitting is there and the pitching could, maybe, possibly be there, with a little help and a little hope.