More from Jacob Turner

Plenty has been made about whether Jacob Turner is seriously considering going to college before he turns pro. Whether intentional or not, he very much portrayed the notion that his options are open.

“The whole season, my plan has been North Carolina,” he said. “That’s the only thing I’ve had guanarateed to me. And really, the only thing that has changed to me is that instead of one option, I have two options.”

What comes across when talking with him, even on a conference call over the phone, is that he’s pretty mature and relatively well-spoken for his age. Makeup was one factor scouting director David Chadd mentioned twice when talking about Turner — not nearly as big of an asset as his fastball, but still an asset.

“Makeup’s critical,” Chadd said, “but more important is his abilities. We’re talking about a high-school right-hander with excellent abilities.”

More from Turner:

  • On comparisons to Rick Porcello: “Obviously I’m with the same [agent, though Porcello parted ways with Scott Boras shortly after signing his contract]. I’ve heard a lot of good things about Rick Porcello and a lot of good things about his work ethic, his drive on the field. We’ll see what happens.”
  • On Todd Worrell, the former closer who’s the pitching coach at Westminster Christian Academy: “Coach Worrell, he was a big help to me. Just from him being a Major League pitcher, he’s got a great wealth of knowledge with pitching and offspeed pitches, how to command your pitches and how to go about your business on the mound. He really helped me out throughout my career.”
  • On being a Cardinals fan but a new Tiger in Cardinals territory, with the two meeting next week at Busch Stadium: “I think everybody in St. Louis is a Cardinals fan. It just came with the territory. I guess my loyalties will be strained next week.”

27 Comments

so… if he goes to college, have the tigers essentially wasted a pick? how does that work? do they assign him a personal pitching coach for his college days? and i thought NCAA rules (just football?) forbid players from having a contract/making money for playing…
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just wondering.
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mike

Just noticed the rating system for each blog entry by Jason –
Can’t say I know a darn thing about recruiting and such, so I’ll just have to see what comes of the pick and his decision – Mike, that is a good question on what happens if he goes for college instead of entering the system.

I heard about this yesterday. My understanding is that if you can’t sign the guy, you get the same pick the following year (I think it would actually be the tenth pick – after next year’s #9). If you don’t sign the guy you pick the second year, you don’t get another chance. I believe that’s why the Nats got to pick at both #1 and #10 yesterday – they were unable to sign their #9 pick (Aaron Crow) last year.
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matt

… and if he goes to college, the Tigers have no claim on him. He will be in the draft again later and anyone can take him.
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matt

If they could only get this offense going again. It simply is not an imposing, cohesive lineup. This year the pitching has been good, the defense has been good (they do go hand-in-hand don’t they?), the breaks have often gone our way, and we have won games we absolutely had no businesss winning. Can you imagine what things could be like if this team was collectively and effectively hitting?
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I do believe we need a change somewhere that reignites the machine. The change could come in the form of someone getting real hot or in some cases, (like Polanco) just getting back to normal. Ordonez has been a serious ***** in the armor. He and Guillen were being relied upon to augment Cabrera and replace Sheffield. Their inability to hit to normal expectations has challenged the offense greatly. Guillen coming back is not to be depended on. I hope that the Tiger brass is not thinking in the back of their minds that this is a solution. Ordonez has become an ineffective middle of the lineup hitter with less than average fielding skills. While I would like to see us get something for him, I do believe the time has passed for getting much in terms of immediate value. I am not big Ordonez fan but I do think he has break-out potential in that bat of his that could go a long way to help inspire this offense. Ordonez banging the ball again would reinvigorate this lineup.
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I like Laird and feel he is a good acquisition but we need him to hit better. He’s a big guy and can swing the bat. He has taken on a big role in handling the staff but he has big enough shoulders to handle the burden of contributing a bit more offensively.
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I saw where JL says they are in a bit of a dilemma with the rotation. I don’t see the situation as being a rosy dilemma as is trying to be portrayed. Bonderman isn’t major league ready. Period. And Willis remains only because of his LHP and sporadic “I think it was OK” type outings. Willis stays in the rotation by default. Miner is arguably better than Dontrelle but JL seems to have a fixation on him being the swing-man.
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The team can’t afford to nurture Bondo back out of loyalty. He had some darn bad luck ant it’s a shame but if it takes him pitching in the minors to get it back together then they should bite the bullet.
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Porcello is a question mark and it will be interesting to see how he responds to adversity. It is an important time for him right now.
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Rodney showed why he may never be able to become a dominant closer. He has had good results this year but you can see the fear in his eyes when things go wrong. You don’t see that in the really good ones. Zumaya has it too, but I think he has the demeanor to make that leap into the “fearless” zone. Not sure he has the pitching savvy to combine with it though.
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Somebody mentioned they though Lyon did well yesterday. I think he did in spots but he still walked a guy at a very bad time (he has walked way too many batters this year), and though Konerko is a quality hitter, lost him on an 0-2 count in a critical situation. I just don’t think you can count him. Thus, we are still, in a sense, looking for a closer. You can label to that role but a label doesn’t make it real. We still do not have the luxury of having a guy out there that you “WANT” to go to at the end of the game like a KRod, Cordero, Broxton, Paplebon or (the revived) Trevor Hoffman.
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Sure would be cool to see JV have a dynamite outing against his nemesis today.

More from Jacob Turner — I keep thinking Jacobs Field and Turner Field.

Looking forward to THAT confusion for the next couple years!

Depressingly, the Brewers signed the revived Trevor Hoffman for only $1.5M more than what we gave Lyon (albeit with another $1.5M in incentives that he’ll probably reach). Imagine how different the Tigers would be if they’d gone for Hoffman instead? Rodney/Seay/Zumaya for the seventh and eighth, and Hoffman (0ER allowed in 17IPs so far this year) in the ninth. Woulda coulda shoulda.

Last night’s game was unusually interesting, and it’s too bad it went right up against the Red Wings game. I have some general observations, nothing about who’s hot and who’s not, and just one “shoulda done” for JL.
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On Willis: I’m certain that anyone else would have been pulled from the game with that injury he sustained. In this case, Dontrelle knows he’s running out of chances, JL knows it, and so does everyone in baseball. I admit thinking “here’s your chance to get him out of there” initially, but quickly changed that to “no, not that way.” I’m glad they left him in. He sure did battle it out, and probably did win more starts, if that was even in question.
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On AJ: He said that all he said to Willis was “hey” and that indeed appears to be what he said, from my amateur lip reading. Seems like a strange thing to say, but Willis and Polanco beside him seemed to take immediate offense. Perhaps they were expecting something more after that high and tight fastball and just reacted. I did like what I saw from Laird. Gerald strikes me as a laid back guy but he had sparks jumping out of his eyes when confronting AJ. I think the entire team backs up Willis more than anyone else, and that’s a good thing. Of course, when the benches cleared, it looked more like they were going to all just join hands and sing ***-by-ya. I don’t think there’s any bad feelings in this particular rivalry, in fact, they seem to enjoy playing each other.
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On Rodney: Usually a closer with a 3-run lead will be left in there to clean up his mess, but this didn’t happen. Did JL know he was overusing him? I will give credit to Lyon in the 10th inning, because that was a very efficient save he picked up. The “shoulda done” is, of course, that JL should have just left Miner in there.
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On Ken Harrelson: I went to a lot of trouble the past two evenings trying to avoid his broadcast. I used my laptop hooked to the TV to get the Tigers radio feed while watching the Chicago HD picture, etc. I just found out today that Darrin Jackson is no longer there and he’s the one I hated the most. I may try Harrelson tonight, since they now have Steve Stone. You folks who get stuck with the away feed on MLB.TV, I remind you that you can upgrade to premium for $5 per month, or $20 on the season. You get a sharp high def picture and you can choose which feed you want to view. And no, I’m not shilling for MLB, just like to see Tiger fans enjoy the games. And I realize that not everyone wants to spend anymore than they have to on baseball.
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Two more to go. Winning one makes this a successful series. Winning two is a statement.
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–Rich

Between Dan’s post and mine, this censor program they use here is cracking me up. It actually calls attention to the word they think they’re protecting us from. :-) For the record, I was referring to that old campground song.
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Geez………………
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–Rich

Some idle thoughts:

Baseball fights – They are the best. Guys running in from the bullpen milling around. Mags running in. Guys kind of grabbing at each other. Shouting at each other but little else going on. Contrast that to hockey. Be great to see Happy Gilmor as our relief pitcher.

Relief Pitching – Listening to Colin Cowherd on ESPN he brought up his Three Pitcher Theory and it makes sense. Teams that do well in the season and during the playoffs have three lights out pitchers, a 1, a 2 and a shutdown closer guy. Hitting yes, fine. Middle relief, ok. But to get anywhere you need a 1,2 and closer. You look at all the contenders and they all have 2 of the 3 pieces, including us. JV and EJ and then the closer. Is Fernando that guy? A Pappelbon shut down closer? No. FR is and always will be an 7th or 8th inning guy. Very effective in that role as has been Zoom. So, as we make our way towards July, this team needs to just get down to brass tacks and acquire that closer. Zoom and FR for the 7th and 8th innings and the closer guy. That is, of course, a rare commodity but that’s why DD gets the dough.

The draft – when is MLB going to figure out this draft thing and allow teams to trade draft picks. The Nat’s could have packaged their deal for some immediate help. Might help the parity thing and bring some economic sense to the drafts.

I don’t necessarily agree with Mr. Cowherd’s theory. Too simplistic. It leaves out the importance of a tight defense and ignores the relievers that come on before the closer and get the really difficult outs. My own theory is that the closer’s role is overrated. I know they say it’s “different in the 9th inning,” but this is a case of saying it makes it so. Zumaya is being held back from being a closer because mentally he makes it more than it is. Rodney is just prone to bouts of wildness, always has been. He can hit that wall in the 9th, the 5th, or the 2nd inning at any time. If he was really the closer, he would have been left to get out of his own mess, like Papelbon last Tuesday. Then everyone is running to the mound to “encourage” him. I swear, the guy received more visitors than a popular corpse in a funeral home. Talk about adding on pressure.
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Lyon had to come into the 9th and clean up a huge mess and got hit with a blown save. Then he takes the hill in the 10th with a one-run lead and breezes through them, and that’s not a save. Statistics. Weird.
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I’m not against picking up another pitcher, but who would it be? Lyon was a closer. Wood was and still is and he ain’t great. Putz was terrible then got injured. It’s all a big crapshoot.
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–Rich

Rich:

I guess Cowherd’s hypothesis is that every team is basically the same defensively and offensively (in the sense that there is no huge advantage one way or the other) and that in a 7 game series the defense and offense may not be as big a factor as the Three Pitcher Theory. In theory if you can win Games 1 and 5 then the pressure is really on the other guy to win 2 and 6. In theory. Not sure if he saw the WS between Det and St.Louis a few years back.

As for the closer, you are correct sir. This really gets to be a roll of the dice (see Willie Hernandez) To get something you are going to have to give something. Doesn’t look as if anyone on the current staff (Bondo?) would be willing to take on the “Bulldog” closer role so DD will have to try and pick through the remains from the cellar and near cellar dwellers and see if he can pry somebody out for a few bucks.

In the postseason, it’s all pitching, that’s a fact.
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Most closers are discovered somewhere along the way. I mean, San Francisco had no use for Joe Nathan, can you imagine? I think the only true shutdown closer over the years has been Mariano Rivera. In fact, he caused a sea change in the way managers handle their pen. Now everyone wants to copy what Torre did successfully in New York, but nobody else has a Rivera. I was just thinking that, not too many years ago, Leyland would have had Miner finish last night’s game and called it a no-brainer. Now “the book” dictates that you go LH specialist, setup, then closer, regardless of the talent level of the selected pitchers.
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Well, that’s a good discussion that we can take up again, thanks Eric. If we don’t hit tonight, we’ll probably be discussing the worth of the 3-spot in a lineup. :-)
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I can’t resist this one. I was looking at a replay of Konerko’s double last night and Harrelson was ranting “Yes! Yes! Yes!” I haven’t heard that many consecutive yes’s since “When Harry Met Sally.” :-)
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–Rich

Yeah Rich, I got almost as much pleasure after his rant and out at home as ‘its gooonnnnee’ call with Grando’s catch!!
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We have mentioned it countless times that our relievers have as much confidence as the average Joe taking a girl out on his own for the very first time. JL has and always will treat the bullpen as chess pieces to move around. Why he doesn’t go with positive momentum on the night is just crazy.
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Our hitting has definitely dropped off as we were in the top 4 in April around .28 and now hitting 10th with .261.
Interesting 2009 OBP/Avge for RISP’s: Inge .444/.322; Cabs .414/.358; Maggs .390/.333 (.307 avge in 2008); Thomas .385/.333; Anderson .355/.333; Santiago .344/.310; Everett .370/.30; Polly .370/.267 (.278 avge in 2008); Curtis .377/.265 (.299 avge in 2008); Raburn .455/.250; Thames .444/.2 (hates 2 outs, .208 avge in 2008); Laird .349/.161 and Larish .269/.053.
Surprising the number of walks Raburn and Thames get when the pressure is on with both maybe getting enough reputation to pressure the pitcher. JL keeping Inge behind one of them at 6 accordingly looks a good decision.
Maggs has surprisingly improved on his clutch hitting stats on last year but hasn’t the power presently to get them home.

JV would love to shut these guys down. Bad record against them.
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Needs to stay away from those 2 strike foul balls that click the pitch counter.

The Mendoza line is now the Sardinha line

Is JL totally insane? Sardinha with the sacks jacked?

For cryin’ out loud. Sardinha stands there in that situation and thinks he can afford to take a 3rd strike?
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The very fact he is on the roster has me angry but JL leving him in to hit has me livid.

Leyland should be ashamed of himself. He has JV needing some more runs (he can’t throw shut-outs every game).
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Thome jacks one- guess that proves that point.. I just don’t get Leyland.
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Man, I just can’t believe Leyland is so bloody dense. and stubborn.

And to augment my point–does JL not realize he needs runs? There is no Rodney or Zumaya today. Probably no Lyon. Wouldn’t some add-on runs make some sense?

Cy Young

I’ve had just about all of Harrelson I can take. The guy has an excuse for every play and situation that doesn’t go the Sox’s way. He simply cannot express one genuine compliment to an opposing team player without at least a hint of resentment showing through. He refuses to admit that the Tigers won these last two games, but only that the Sox players and the umpires gifted them to us. I think we all grew up knowing someone like him who would never admit that you beat them at anything. Excuses like “I let you win, I wasn’t trying, I don’t care, I gave it to you, and on and on…..”
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Another great pitching performance by Justin, so far our MVP this season, followed by Edwin J. and Brandon Inge.

Well ladies and gentlemen, we have taken the series. Now that we’ve got our foot firmly on their throat, let’s just lean forward and bring it down tomorrow.
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Verlander was tremendous, a true big time performance. It’s funny now to think back to April when some of us looked at his starts as a sure loss. He gave up the dinger to Thome but blew him away in the 9th. And he also saved Leyland’s bacon over his mishandling of the bullpen last night.
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I never figured Adam Everett as someone who would always come up with the big hit, but he’s done it. He’s been close to MVP status so far.
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Downside: Ordonez. I have to look up the stats because he must be near the top in DPs hit into. I was actually relieved tonight when Thomas took his place. I know he figured into the second run, but he’s killing us in the 3 hole. We need a lineup change if he’s going to be in there.
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All in all, though, we came into the season with hopes of winning with pitching and defense, and we’ve done just that. I like this kind of baseball.
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Okay, since I mentioned Harrelson earlier, I’ll follow up. I did listen to him tonight, and on purpose. It was actually sad. He spent all night complaining about the umpires, and his crew went along by showing replays of every close pitch called against the Sox, multiple replays of tag plays called against the Sox, and yet more replays of last night’s play at the plate. It’s a sad thing for a man his age to be such a pathetic whiner. How can the Chicago fans stand to listen to this night after night? Any of you who heard his broadcast tonight know what I’m talking about. It was just…………..sad. And embarrassing.
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This series has gone by quickly. I guess that happens when you’re winning.
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–Rich

Marty, we’re posting at the same time again on the same subject. His “giving them games” theme is another example of his pathetic whining. Hard to believe this guy played in the bigs, but I saw him in person doing it.
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–Rich

JV has taken the art of pitching to a new level. I think it’s called growing up. The joys of winning at ChiTown are magnified by the pathetic whining provided by Harrelson. Sadly, Steve Stone could be very good without the Hawk. I am surprised that he is allowed to be in the same company of the true greats in broadcasting. I still believe that our 2-3-4-5 will come alive soon, and then we could go on a real tear. I like Dontrelle, but I sure get tired of 100 pitches in the 4th. inning. Am hoping so much that Bonderman can make it back. He is the face of those lean years that were so bad. in 02,03,04. I keep praying that his arm stregth will continue to improve. The unsung heroes of our 09 team are batters 6-9 on a routine basis.
Greg

Did I see Maggs tag up and take 3rd on a fly ball out to left center? Maybe the location of the hit isn’t spot on – but that fact that he took 3rd when normally you don’t see him doing that made me tickled pink – nice to see a big of aggressive baserunning when you don’t expect it!

Has anyone notice that JV seems to be the most dominate when Dane is catching? The way that combination has worked I would rest Laird whenever JV is pitching and you can afford the .100 average.

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