May 2009

Postgame roster move

The Tigers optioned left-hander Luke French back to Triple-A Toledo after the game tonight so that they can activate Nate Robertson from the 15-day disabled list in time for Thursday’s game.

That’s likely to be the only roster move made in time for Thursday’s game. Manager Jim Leyland said he does not expect Magglio Ordonez to be back in time for the game, so he’ll likely remain on the family medical emergency list.

Ramirez HR facts

Wilkin Ramirez is the first Tiger to homer in his Major League debut since Reggie Sanders (not that Reggie Sanders, an earlier one) homered in his first big league at-bat on Sept. 1, 1974 against the A's at Tiger Stadium. The previous Tiger to do so was none other than current Tigers coach Gene Lamont.

Rangers pull off triple play vs. Tigers

DETROIT — The Texas Rangers thrwarted a Tigers rally and made some history in the process Wednesday night, when second baseman Ian Kinsler and shortstop Elvis Andrus teamed up for a triple play against the Tigers at Comerica Park.

Brandon Inge’s double and a four-pitch walk to Ryan Raburn put the runners on for Detroit, which had a chance to break open its early 1-0 lead against Texas starter Matt Harrison. Up came former Rangers catcher Gerald Laird, who just broke out of a hitting slump over the weekend.

After Laird fouled off a bunt attempt on the first pitch, manager Jim Leyland sent the runners in motion, setting up the extra outs when Laird lined out sharply to Kinsler. He flipped the ball to Andrus to tag second base for the second out on Inge. Once Andrus crossed the bag, he had a mere few steps to go to tag Raburn for the third out.

Raburn was close enough to second base, in hindsight, that Kinsler arguably had a chance to pull off an unassisted triple play.

With that, the Rangers had pulled off the fifth triple play in franchise history, and their first since April 14, 2002, when former Ranger and future Tiger Kenny Rogers induced a fielder’s choice grounder from Seattle’s Ron Wright. That play featured two run-downs on the basepaths for the final two outs.

The last conventional triple play the Rangers pulled off took place August 6, 2001 at Boston. Scott Hatteberg’s line out to Alex Rodriguez with runners on first and second allowed A-Rod to flip to second baseman Randy Velarde to tag second for one and then tag Chris Stynes for the third.

The Tigers, meanwhile, hadn’t hit into a triple play since Sept. 18, 2006, when Carlos Guillen hit into one against the White Sox at Chicago.

Wednesday’s triple play came in especially timely once Taylor Teagarden drove in Marlon Byrd in the next inning to tie the game in the fifth inning against Tigers ace Justin Verlander.

Ramirez batting third at DH

If Wednesday is the only game Wilkin Ramirez plays in a Tigers uniform before heading back to Triple-A Toledo, he’s going to make the most of it. The Tigers are certainly trying to get the most out of him. He’s batting third in the Tigers order tonight, between Placido Polanco and Miguel Cabrera.

One reason behind the move, manager Jim Leyland said, is that they don’t have any obvious candidates. Clete Thomas is out with left-hander Matt Harrison pitching, and Magglio is away from the team. Plus, Leyland said, Ramirez brings speed, which Leyland has been able to use with Thomas up there. Ramirez usually batted third in the Mud Hens lineup, and he was tied for the International League lead in stolen bases at the time he was called up.

You’ll also notice Brandon Inge batting fifth for the first time this year. His other games have been in the sixth (9 games), seventh (19) or eighth (7) spots.

In other news, Leyland laid out more of a game plan for his bullpen today. After Bobby Seay and Brandon Lyon each got a big out in the seventh inning Tuesday night, Leyland said he wants to use both of them in that inning with a lead moving forward. Which one he uses depends on how the opposing lineup looks between lefties and righties. He also said he’ll mix in Ryan Perry on occasion when Lyon isn’t available.

“I think Brandon Lyon’s really coming on,” Leyland said.

TIGERS

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Ramirez, DH
  4. Cabrera, 1B
  5. Inge, 3B
  6. Raburn, RF
  7. Laird, C
  8. Anderson, LF
  9. Everett, SS

P: Justin Verlander

RANGERS

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
  2. David Murphy, LF
  3. Michael Young, 3B
  4. Hank Blalock, DH
  5. Marlon Byrd, CF
  6. Nelson Cruz, RF
  7. Chris Davis, 1B
  8. Taylor Teagarden, C
  9. Elvis Andrus, SS

P: Matt Harrison

Santiago starts again, no Ramirez yet

When Ramon Santiago is hitting like this, sometimes you have to ride it out. That, plus the chance to give Adam Everett a day off coupled with Monday’s off-day, put Santiago in Tuesday’s lineup at shortstop. You might remember he started Sunday at second base for Placido Polanco.

Wilkin Ramirez is here, but he won’t be in tonight’s starting lineup against right-hander Brandon McCarthy. Look for him to be the DH Wednesday versus Rangers left-hander Matt Harrison. That could be his only game action of this stint, but Leyland said he might start him Thursday against Kevin Millwood.

TIGERS

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Thomas, RF
  4. Cabrera, 1B
  5. Larish, DH
  6. Inge, 3B
  7. Anderson, LF
  8. Laird, C
  9. Santiago, SS

P: Dontrelle Willis

RANGERS

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
  2. Elvis Andrus, SS
  3. Michael Young, 3B
  4. Andruw Jones, DH
  5. Marlon Byrd, CF
  6. David Murphy, LF
  7. Nelson Cruz, RF
  8. Chris Davis, 3B
  9. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C

P: Brandon McCarthy

Tigers call up Wilkin Ramirez

Top outfield prospect Wilkin Ramirez is going to get his first taste of the big leagues while Magglio Ordonez is away. The Tigers recalled him from Triple-A Toledo on Tuesday to fill Ordonez’s roster spot, which opened up when he was placed on the family medical emergency list.

Aside from a huge stolen base total, Ramirez had been slumping with the Mud Hens of late until he went on a tear last week. He had a four-hit, two-homer game Saturday at Charlotte, followed by a 3-for-3 performance Sunday. For the year, the 23-year-old is batting .316 with five homers, 13 RBIs, 23 runs scored and 14 stolen bases in 17 attempts.

Bereavement vs. Family Medical Emergency Leave

An attentive reader, Kevin in Kansas City, emailed this morning with a very good observation about the bereavement list on which Magglio Ordonez was placed. When Delmon Young left the Twins a few days earlier to be with his ailing mother, he was placed on the family medical emergency leave list. So why was Magglio placed on the Bereavement List?

The answer, it turns out, is that they’re the same list. The terminology changed recently depending on the situation. It makes sense because, frankly, it sounds awkward to place a player on the bereavement list when he’s leaving the club to visit a loved one who’s facing a potentially life-threatening procedure. Zach Miner, for example, went on the bereavement list two years ago when he left to visit his dad in the hospital. On the flip side, a player going to the funeral of a loved one isn’t attending to a family medical emergency. In that case, it would be called the bereavement list.

So from here on out, we’ll try to call it the family medical emergency leave list in Magglio’s case.

Tigers place Magglio on bereavement list

Magglio Ordonez will miss at least the Tigers’ next two games Tuesday and Wednesday against the Rangers while he attends to his wife, who is having surgery.

The Tigers will place Ordonez on the bereavement list, which is permissible for players dealing with medical emergency. A player can remain on the bereavement list between three and seven days, and the team can call up another player from the 40-man roster to take his place.

The move is something the Tigers had planned out over the weekend. Manager Jim Leyland said Saturday that Ordonez would leave the team after Sunday’s game and hopefully return Thursday to tend to a personal issue. It was uncertain whether Ordonez would rejoin the team in time for Thursday’s afternoon game against the Rangers.

Neither Leyland nor Ordonez specified the issue at that point, but Ordonez said he would not be traveling home to Venezuela.

The team made an official announcement after Sunday’s win over the A’s, and requested that reporters respect Ordonez’s privacy. Ordonez was not available for comment.

With a scheduled off-day Monday, the Tigers will wait until Tuesday to call up a player to take Ordonez’s spot on the 25-man roster. Josh Anderson and Ryan Raburn are expected to get more playing time in Ordonez’s place during the upcoming series with Texas, which will start two right-handed pitchers and a left-hander for the series.

Day off for Inge

For the first time all season, Brandon Inge is out of the starting lineup. Jim Leyland decided this was the day to finally give him a day off, as he lined up as many left-handers as he could against A’s starter Trevor Cahill. Thus, Jeff Larish gets the start at third base, with Clete Thomas and Josh Anderson both in the starting outfield alongside Curtis Granderson.

“If we chagne Thomas’ name to Sanderson, we’ll be all set,” Leyland said Saturday.

Magglio Ordonez is in the lineup before he leaves the team for a few days.

TIGERS

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Anderson, LF
  3. Thomas, RF
  4. Cabrera, 1B
  5. Ordonez, DH
  6. Larish, 3B
  7. Laird, C
  8. Santiago, 2B
  9. Everett, SS

P: Armando Galarraga

ATHLETICS

  1. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  2. Adam Kennedy, 2B
  3. Jack Cust, RF
  4. Matt Holliday, LF
  5. Jason Giambi, DH
  6. Ryan Sweeney, CF
  7. Bobby Crosby, 1B
  8. Landon Powell, C
  9. Jack Hannahan, 3B

P: Trevor Cahill

Saturday: Tigers vs. A's

Worth noting how much more comfortable Raburn looks at the plate and in the field lately. He has settled in a bit after that nightmare of a series against the Angels and the miscue against the Indians. He’ll be in LF tonight.

“I think he was putting a lot of presure on himself,” Leyland said, “and I think now he’s ready to do what he’s capable of doing.”

TIGERS

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Thomas, RF
  4. Cabrera, 1B
  5. Ordonez, DH
  6. Inge, 3B
  7. Raburn, LF
  8. Laird, C
  9. Everett, SS

P: Rick Porcello

ATHLETICS

  1. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  2. Kurt Suzuki, C
  3. Jack Cust, DH
  4. Matt Holliday, LF
  5. Jason Giambi, 1B
  6. Adam Kennedy, 2B
  7. Ryan Sweeney, CF
  8. Bobby Crosby, 3B
  9. Travis Buck, RF

P: Dallas Braden

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 24,968 other followers