July 23rd, 2009

Guillen might not be long for Toledo

Amidst speculation the offensively challenged Tigers could call up Carlos Guillen in the next couple days, the Tigers sent special assistant Dick Egan to Toledo Thursday to watch Guillen in his second rehab start for the Mud Hens. Guillen went 3-for-4 with three singles before being lifted in what became a Mud Hens rout over Syracuse.

Besides deciding whether he’s ready at the plate and his timing is there, there are two issues the Tigers have to address, both of them health-related. First, is it important whether Guillen plays in the field? Right now, it doesn’t appear to be. Both of his starts in Toledo were at DH, not in the outfield.

Then there’s the matter of switch-hitting. According to the Toledo Blade, Guillen batted left-handed when Syracuse brought in a lefty reliever. Guillen told the paper after the game that he wanted to get more looks from the left side because the Tigers plan to use him primarily against the right-handers. But it’s also known that Guillen has had trouble with his sore right shoulder batting right-handed. He didn’t face a lefty pitcher Thursday.

Could it be a platoon situation at DH for Guillen with Marcus Thames? Possible, though Thames could still play the outfield to stay in the lineup against right-handers if that’s what manager Jim Leyland wanted to do.

Inge back in lineup

UPDATE: Game is starting at 1:30.

As for the lineup, Brandon Inge is back in, playing third and batting seventh. Dusty Ryan gets his first start since the All-Star break, batting eighth. Given the Tigers’ offensive struggles, one wonders if he might get more occasional starts to put a power bat in the lineup, except that Laird is so valuable for the pitching staff.


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

P: Luke French


  1. Ichiro Suzuki, RF
  2. Russell Branyan, 1B
  3. Jose Lopez, 2B
  4. Mike Sweeney, DH
  5. Wladimir Balentien, LF
  6. Ryan Langerhans, CF
  7. Rob Johnson, C
  8. Jack Hannahan, 3B
  9. Ronny Cedeno, SS

P: Jarrod Washburn