Good news on Hollimon

hollimon.jpgForgot to mention this last night, but talking with Michael Hollimon at the caravan stop in Toledo, there’s good reason to think that he should be ready for the start of the season. He estimates his left shoulder is at 90-95 strength following surgery to repair a labrum tear last September, and he’s doing all baseball activities in his workouts in Dallas. He’s planning on reporting to Lakeland a couple weeks early and picking up his program under the watch of the Tigers athletic training staff.

There was an initial fear after the surgery that Hollimon could miss half of the 2009 season.

Between Hollimon’s progress and the Tigers’ optimism that Clete Thomas could be back sooner than expected, those are two big pieces of depth at Triple-A Toledo should Detroit face any early-season injuries in the lineup. It also translates into a full season of development for Hollimon, which can only help him and the Tigers depending on how the middle infield pictures looks at season’s end.


Best of luck to Hollimon but I expect (and hope) him to be needed only as a September call-up. I will watch, with great interest, how Cale Iorg progresses for Canada in the upcoming WBC. He may be a large part of the future for the Tigers.
Question for Jason:
There seems to be constant “talk” about finding another LHP for the bullpen. With the presence of Rapada, McBride and Rule 5 Bloom. How necessary do they feel this is? Also keeping in mind that either Willis or Robertson is very likely to end up there as well.
Opinion: Why not let Miner audition for the closer role if they don’t secure a proven one?

How bad do they want to win? Apparently bad enough to sign Ti (or Ni?), Rincon and Williamson to MINOR League contracts. Reclamation projects to be sure. Not exactly exciting the fans of Michigan with this approach. So far the big news has been Kyle Bloom (Who?). I’ll cut Dave a little slack but these guys and the names of other guys we are hearing are not instilling a lot of confidence in me nor do I imagine, in the minds of the players either. What’s next? Parrish?
Other teams got KRod, Putz, Smoltz, Wood, Saito, Street etc. I guess these are guys that we can’t afford? Shouldn’t have given so much dough to Inge, Robertson and Sheffield. Hindsight may be 20/20 but a little foresight wouldn’t hurt either.

While I’m not exactly frothing at the mouth to get Brandon Lyon, I will allow that it would be a tremendous boost to get the various bullpen roles in order before spring training. If he’s signed, and if he’s named closer-elect, I see that as a positive event. This would enhance Rodney’s value to the team. It would also mean that any contributions from Zumaya would become a huge layer of frosting on the cake. Since the MLB Network was showing game 4 of the 2007 NLCS, I took the opportunity to “scout” both Lyon and Cruz. Unfortunately, the Rockies hitters seemed in such a hurry to parlay their six-run lead into a win, they were swinging at just about everything. I couldn’t get much of a feel from that. Looked like Lyon had a serviceable fastball and a sharp little breaking pitch.
The signings of Rincon and Williamson to minor league contracts is okay with me. While it would appear that it’s Casey Fossum all over again, both of these guys have had success in the big leagues. And it is just minor league contracts, after all.
It’s nice to hear Inge talking it up but I was already thinking that he wasn’t going to hit .205, or even .230. I think he’ll get back up into the respectable range that he used to hit at.
As long as I’m being upbeat, I may as well mention that it’s entirely possible that most or all of the Detroit pitchers could have good years. It’s not that farfetched. If we have to hope and dream, we may as well do it big.
One thing’s for sure: this spring training is going to be a lot more intriguing than last year’s. I’m looking forward to the trip.

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