The Yanks are coming

Busy this morning helping out on the A-Rod story, but now back on Tigers, who may or may not have Dontrelle pitching today. He has a stomach virus that’s going around the team, and he wasn’t sounding very strong when I talked with him briefly this morning.

If he can’t go, that’s a few innings to fill, and on a day when the Tigers gave some of their pitchers extra innings in an intersquad game on the back fields, where Jon Kibler threw three innings.

On a brighter note, Gerald Laird is back in the lineup at catcher.

Twitter page is up and going. Here are the lineups …


  1. Everett, SS
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Sheffield, DH
  4. Thames, LF
  5. Larish, 1B
  6. Clevlen, RF
  7. Laird, C
  8. Inge, 3B
  9. Gomez, RF

PITCHING: Nate Robertson, Dontrelle Willis (maybe), Fernando Rodney, others


  1. Melky Cabrera, CF
  2. Johnny Damon, LF
  3. Nick Swisher, 1B
  4. Hideki Matsui, DH
  5. Xavier Nady, RF
  6. Cody Ransom, 3B
  7. Jose Molina, C
  8. Angel Berroa, SS
  9. Doug Bernie, 2B

PITCHING: A.J. Burnett, Phil Hughes, Brian Bruney, Andrew Brackman, Eric Hacker


Good. Sheffield is back in the lineup. Is he feeling better or just playing sick? Did he get some different kinds of bats in for this game? I saw pictures of him swinging and the bats shattered at the handles.

Wish the games were on TV. It’s hard to tell how the players are playing by just listening and reading about them.

We absolutely NEED to see something out of Nate today. I don’t have a very good feeling from either him or Dontrelle but one of them really has to show they are still MLB rotation quality pitchers.
Sheffield seems to be floating but AlSchu is right about not being able to get a good sense of how the guys are doing without actually seeing them.

Sheff is pretty much playing sick. He isn’t throwing up anymore, but he’s still not in good shape. He might’ve gotten the day off if the Tigers didn’t have the two-day trip to Jupiter coming up.

With ARod having surgery now are the Yankees going to be looking to make a trade? Would the Tigers have any interest in their players? Some pitchers maybe. Saw that Pedro Martinez pitched well yesterday. Would the Tigers be interested in signing him?

Boy these 2 guys are really putting pressure on the overall composition of the staff. A contender these days (in my opinion), has to have a good southpaw in the rotation. By the looks of things we aren’t going to have one.
DD must be shaking his head at the amount of money he is paying these guys to throw BP to the opposition. Also, 6 walks in 4 innings so far today are not a good sign.
DD has made some good moves but as far as contracts go he has really missed the boat with Inge, Sheffield, Robertson, Willis, and to a lesser degree, Ordonez and Guillen. Their contracts have made them untouchables by other clubs. At least Ordonez and Guillen will provide some production but they are at the stage where they are being paid for reputation as much as current production–I think they are both a bit brittle too. I had hoped that they would have tried to flog Ordonez off and take advantage of his recent batting championship to rebuild this club. I doubt he will be able to hit .300 this year.

Maybe they’re all saving it for the regular season. MLB and Bud Selig have made this spring training really boring for me and I guess the players. I’m not really thinking players have to play so great right now. I know things change mentally for players when opening day finally comes around. At least for me I’m hoping Venezuela and the USA lose real quick so we can get the Tigers team back.

I’m afraid that even with the big guns back there is a “disconnect” with this team. They don’t have the 3 Musketeers ethic and we can all simply wait for a galvanizing event to make this a “team”.

I doubt anyone would want to pick up Ordonez’s contract at his age. Looks like a trade deadline transaction to me, and the way this weekend has gone, we may be sellers at the deadline. He did hit under .300 as recently as 2006. The big contracts have gotten this club hog-tied. Here we’ve got a guy, Robertson, vying for the starting rotation when it’s not clear to me he should even be in the big leagues. The same, to a lesser degree, with Willis. Dontrelle “sounded” better today but I’m in the same boat with you all, having to listen to it. Having seen two weeks of live games, this is tough. Dan and Jim did a good job of describing the bloop singles, and Willis has been hurt by softly hit balls all spring.
We’ve got an ugly one going today.
At this point, Willis is the best bet to make the rotation. I don’t know what to do with Nate. I’m not even considering Miner because my money says JL puts him in the bullpen out of necessity. There’s the dark horse, Porcello, too.
There’s no excuse for poor play at anytime, but at least there’s a full month left before opening day. I think we may get some interesting quotes from JL after this one.
On the other hand, maybe they all have the stomach virus.
Later on, I want to attempt a review of all the spring training ballparks we’ve visited over the past two years.

When is Bonderman going to pitch? Are they hoping for sometime this week?

Bonderman is on track to pitch shortly. He threw off the mound today and supposedly felt very good. I would be surprised if he doesn’t pitch in a game later on this week, maybe after the off-day Thursday.

With A-Rod now only out probably 6-9 weeks, it sounds like their Plan A is to go with Cody Ransom. The one extra guy the Tigers would have that could fit the role is Mike Hessman, but I’m not sure what level of interest there would be. Even so, it would not be the kind of deal that makes over the pitching staff or anything.

I don’t think you can judge chemistry or disconnect off of spring training games. The regulars play maybe half of the games and the guys that do the rallying in the late innings usually are heading to the minors. Flat sliders and fastball command are not a reflection of team chemistry. The clubhouse is still about as loose and likable as you could expect with a handful of pitchers in competition and a virus going around.

Rodney sure pitched a good inning. That was encouraging. But no pressure really. The score was out of hand and no regulars left in the lineup, only minor leaguers. But still it was nice to see. Now if he can just continue with it.

Who is going on the roadtrip to Jupiter? Will they just be staying overnight?

Just about all of the position players will be in Jupiter for at least one of the games. Laird, Inge and Thames won’t be there for Monday’s game but will be there Tuesday. Pretty much everyone else is on Monday’s bus.

Pitchingwise, you have Rick Porcello, Freddy Dolsi, Chris Lambert, Brandon Lyon, Zach Simons, Clay Rapada and Bobby Seay on Monday. Then Tuesday, Zach Miner, Eddie Bonine, Ryan Perry, Kyle Bloom and Fu-Te Ni are scheduled. Miner was heading down there tonight, since his home is in Jupiter.

Most of the Tigers will be staying overnight.

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