August 22nd, 2008

Quotes from Nate

Robertson was very reflective about the decision. He said he knew he was going to have “a conversation” with the manager after the Texas outing, but seeing it coming didn’t help much.

“It’s tough, probably the lowest point for me that I’ve had to deal with. I think I’ve kind of bottomed out. But that doesn’t mean I don’t believe that I can come back and be a legit starter for this club.”

On his slider, Robertson said, “Throughout my career and especially when it comes to situational pitching, I’ve always felt like when I’ve had my legit slider, which is my out pitch, I’ve felt like I could get out of anything. And this year, for whatever reason, it’s just been inconsistent, off and on. You can just see that in times when I’ve gone up against a good left-handed bat. It’s been a very, very effective pitch. It’s been a plus pitch. And it’s not a plus pitch right now. It’s inconsistent. When it flattens out, it’s very hittable and it’s cost me in bad situations in a ballgame.”

On the decision to take him out of the rotation: “Skip’s got a job to do, and he’s got to make the decision for this club, and right now you can’t feel good about me going out there after what happened in Texas. I mean, I don’t feel good about me going out there after what happened in Texas. I know I have better stuff than that. If I don’t have anything to throw off of that fastball, then I’m in trouble.”

Robertson also said they would “probably have to make some changes” in his offseason program. It sounded like that could be a combination of working on his mechanics and altering his workout program. The word that Robertson used was “flexibility,” as in he doesn’t have much of it, and it’s affecting his game.

Robertson to bullpen

According to manager Jim Leyland, “Nate is not going out with all his weapons, especially his slider.”

As a result, Robertson is going to work with pitching coach Chuck Hernandez to work on that and move out to the bullpen while he’s doing so.

Asked who will start in Robertson’s old spot next Tuesday, Leyland said, “I have no idea.”

Friday: Tigers at Royals

Early lineups …

TIGERS (62-65)

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Ordonez, RF
  4. Cabrera, RF
  5. Guillen, 3B
  6. Sheffield, DH
  7. Joyce, LF
  8. Inge, C
  9. Santiago, SS

ROYALS (55-72)

  1. Mike Aviles, SS
  2. Esteban German, 2B
  3. David DeJesus, LF
  4. Jose Guillen, RF
  5. Mark Teahen, 3B
  6. Billy Butler, DH
  7. Ross Gload, 1B
  8. John Buck, C
  9. Joey Gathright, CF