September 2009

Fan can exchange Monday tickets after all

Fans who had tickets to Monday’s rainout and weren’t able to use them for Tuesday afternoon makeup game can make an exchange after all. The Tigers announced that fans with those tickets can mail them in and get tickets for an April game next season, not including Opening Day.

The exchange has to take place by mail. The Tigers are asking ticket holders to mail in their unused Sept. 28 tickets, include contact information and game selection for next April, and sent to:

Attention: Postponed Game
Detroit Tigers
2100 Woodward Avenue
Detroit, MI 48201

Tickets for April games will be mailed out next March. To find a date and game, click here for the Tigers 2010 schedule.

Figaro to start Saturday

Jim Leyland announced this afternoon that he’ll start rookie Alfredo Figaro Saturday against the White Sox. It’ll be his first start at any level since that outing at Houston in late June, when the Astros roughed him up. He was optioned to Triple-A Toledo right after that, but that move was cancelled when he was found to have a sprained right wrist, forcing him onto the DL. He returned in August for a late-season rehab stint at Double-A Erie, but he pitched for the SeaWolves as a reliever then, not a starter. The Tigers will have a few days to stretch him out.

By doing that, the Tigers leave Justin Verlander available on his normal rest to pitch Sunday’s regular-season finale if need be.

Wednesday: Tigers vs. Twins

Magglio gets a day at DH, but he says he’s fine. Aubrey Huff is out of the lineup tonight. So far as I know, he’s not hurt.

TIGERS

  1. Curtis Granderson, CF
  2. Placido Polanco, 2B
  3. Clete Thomas, RF
  4. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  5. Magglio Ordonez, DH
  6. Carlos Guillen, LF
  7. Brandon Inge, 3B
  8. Alex Avila, C
  9. Ramon Santiago, SS

P: Eddie Bonine

TWINS

  1. Denard Span, CF
  2. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  3. Joe Mauer, C
  4. Jason Kubel, RF
  5. Michael Cuddyer, 1B
  6. Delmon Young, LF
  7. Jose Morales, DH
  8. Matt Tolbert, 3B
  9. Nick Punto, 2B

P: Carl Pavano

Washburn hoping for return in 2-4 weeks

Jarrod Washburn said today the timetable he was given on his rehab program for his ailing left knee could have him back in 2-4 weeks, should the Tigers be playing around then.

Washburn, back with the club after missing the road trip to visit orthopedic surgeon Dr. Lewis Yocum, said he’s two weeks into a 4-6 week program designed to strengthen the muscles around his knee, which has instability on the inner side. That’s enough for him to hold off on surgery for now and try to get back into pitching shape.

“It was either that or surgery,” Washburn said.

That doesn’t mean he’s avoiding surgery. There’s a good chance he’ll have to have it this offseason. But waiting on that doesn’t hurt him, and he feels he owes it to the Tigers to at least try to come back, even if it’s a long shot.

“It’s frustrating,” Washburn said. “I’ve done nothing since I got here, and it’s all because of the knee.”

Porcello probably done until playoffs

When Jim Leyland extended Rick Porcello out to 111 pitches Tuesday against the Twins, he did so expecting that he’d be getting some extra rest. Because Monday’s rainout pretty much washed away any chance of Porcello pitching this weekend.

Asked if there’s any chance of Porcello pitching again this week, Leyland said, “I doubt it.”

If Porcello pitched Monday, he would’ve come back Saturday on his normal rest. With a Tuesday start, he would have to pitch on short rest to do that, which isn’t going to happen with a 20-year-old rookie.

Porcello could conceivably pitch on regular rest Sunday, but that has been Verlander’s spot all along in case the Tigers need a win in the season’s final day. It sounds unlikely that Verlander would pitch on short rest Saturday, either.

That would leave the Tigers in a spot start situation Saturday in a week when they’re already starting Eddie Bonine and Nate Robertson Wednesday and Thursday, respectively. The only other Tigers on the pitching staff who have started a game like that this year are Alfredo Figaro, who hasn’t started a game since June because a wrist injury forced him to miss nearly two months, and Zach Miner, whom Leyland said a few weeks ago he would rather not start unless “absolutely, 100 percent necessary.”

Monday night: Tigers vs. Twins

It’s the standard lineup for a left-hander, the same lineup Brian Duensing pretty much command a week and a half ago at the Metrodome. We’ll see how it goes.

The big story for the Twins is that Joe Mauer is catching the nightcap, a situation in which he would normally DH. Instead, Jason Kubel is the DH, with Carlos Gomez added to the lineup in center field for a speed factor near the bottom of the order.

TIGERS

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

P: Justin Verlander

TWINS

  1. Denard Span, RF
  2. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  3. Joe Mauer, C
  4. Jason Kubel, DH
  5. Michael Cuddyer, 1B
  6. Delmon Young, LF
  7. Carlos Gomez, CF
  8. Matt Tolbert, 3B
  9. Nick Punto, 2B

P: Brian Duensing

Blackburn on Tigers

This was a telling comment on Nick Blackburn on the Tigers offense Tuesday afternoon:

“First couple innings were a struggle. [Pitching coach Rick Anderson] came out and told me he saw a few
mechanical things I was doing different. Once we got those lined out, hitters
started battling themselves — in a way, kind of getting themselves out, taking
defensive swings and not sure what was coming
. So, for the most part,
they kept hitting the ball at people.”

Monday: Tigers vs. Twins

Magglio Ordonez was in the lineup for the rainout last night, but he isn’t in there today. With the doubleheader, Leyland was not going to start Magglio both games, instead giving Clete Thomas a shot in the opener after his nice game over the weekend.

More interesting might be the fact that Gerald Laird will probably catch both games. He’s in the lineup for the opener to work with Rick Porcello, which has been a good combination, and Laird has been working with Justin Verlander for all but one start this year.

TIGERS

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

P: Rick Porcello

TWINS

  1. Denard Span, CF
  2. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  3. Joe Mauer, C
  4. Jason Kubel, RF
  5. Michael Cuddyer, 1B
  6. Delmon Young, LF
  7. Jose Morales, DH
  8. Matt Tolbert, 3B
  9. Nick Punto, 2B

P: Nick Blackburn

Tigers, Twins washed out

A line of showers and storms stretching across the state of Michigan washed out Monday’s opener of the Tigers’ critical series against the Twins at Comerica Park.

The postponed game will be made up Tuesday as part of a day-night doubleheader. First pitch for the opener will be at 12:05 p.m. ET, followed by the regularly-scheduled 7:05 p.m. contest. Tickets for Monday’s game will only be honored for the Tuesday afternoon game, while tickets for Tuesday’s game will be good for the night game only.

Monday’s original starters, Rick Porcello and Nick Blackburn, will pitch the opener. Justin Verlander and Brian Duensing will face each other in the nightcap as originally scheduled.

The twin-bill adds another subplot to a four-game set that is expected to go a long way towards deciding the winner of the American League Central.

Now that Porcello’s start has been pushed back a day, it raises intrigue as to what the Tigers might do with their rotation for his next turn. Porcello would’ve been on track to start Saturday against the White Sox, but he would now have to start that on short rest, a difficult situation for a 20-year-old rookie whose innings workload has been closely watched all year.

The Tigers could conceivably start Justin Verlander on three days’ rest if need be, but they had put him on track to pitch the regular-season finale if need be.

Monday: Tigers vs. Twins

It’s windy, wet and gloomy in Detroit tonight, and the best hope is that the wet part lets up. It very well might, because these clouds look like they’re heading east in a hurry. With the ’84 reunion tonight and no desire on either team’s part to have a makeup doubleheader in such a key series, I’m guessing they wait a while to get this game in if they have to. They might not have to do that, though.

The only real change in the Tigers lineup is the flip of Gerald Laird and Brandon Inge to seventh and eighth in the order, respectively. Clete Thomas is 6-for-12 off Nick Blackburn, but he doesn’t get the start over Magglio, who’s pretty good off Blackburn himself at 4-for-10. Inge is 1-for-11.

TIGERS

  1. Curtis Granderson, CF
  2. Placido Polanco, 2B
  3. Magglio Ordonez, RF
  4. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  5. Aubrey Huff, DH
  6. Carlos Guillen, LF
  7. Gerald Laird, C
  8. Brandon Inge, 3B
  9. Ramon Santiago, SS

P: Rick Porcello

TWINS

  1. Denard Span, CF
  2. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  3. Joe Mauer, SS
  4. Jason Kubel, RF
  5. Michael Cuddyer, 1B
  6. Delmon Young, LF
  7. Jose Morales, DH
  8. Matt Tolbert, 3B
  9. Nick Punto, 2B

P: Nick Blackburn

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