How the Tigers replace Magglio
At this time, it’s anyone’s guess. From a roster standpoint, the pickings are few. Other than rehabbing Carlos Guillen, who will start playing in games in instructional ball on Monday, the Tigers are out of position players with Major League experience who have stayed fresh and are on the 40-man roster. Though it was originally believed that Will Rhymes was sent to Florida, he was not, and he isn’t expected to be a consideration for a call up.
They could wait and see whether Delmon Young (oblique) or even Brennan Boesch (thumb surgery) recover enough to be available for a pinch-hit or two later in the series. If they want to add a healthy outfielder, the only option left on the 40-man roster is Clete Thomas, who went home with the conclusion of the Triple-A Toledo season around Labor Day weekend. Ryan Strieby has played some outfield, as did Rhymes in Toledo, but he was a first baseman this season.
Realistically, whoever they call up will be an insurance option and nothing more. The more pertinent question is who plays right field in his place. On that, they have two options.
Don Kelly was a hero in the Division Series and provides a hot bat. But his time against left-handed pitching this year has been very limited. He’s 4-for-21 off lefties this season, and had even fewer plate appearances off southpaws last year. The Rangers have two lefties and a righty going over the next three games.
Andy Dirks hasn’t played at all this postseason, and he closed out the regular season with limited playing time. but he has more time — and more success — against lefties: 10-for-31, two home runs, nine RBIs.