Avila leaves game, likely headed to DL

Alex Avila’s return behind the plate was supposed to be the best news on the Tigers’ injury front. It lasted just five innings before his right hamstring tightened up again.

Now, the Tigers and Avila await the results of an MRI exam. Judging from a report out of Toledo from the Toledo Blade’s John Wagner late Tuesday night that Bryan Holaday is being called up, a report that another source confirmed, a stint on the disabled list appears to be imminent.

“I checked with him before the game,” Leyland said. “I try not to play guys if I’m suspicious. Maybe in the back of my mind I was a little bit suspicious, but when he came in here today I said ‘How are you doing?’ and he said, ‘I better be in the lineup,’ and I said, ‘Well, you’re in the lineup.’

“We found out it was probably a mistake on my part. If you want to blame somebody, blame me for that.”

Avila missed the previous two games over the weekend against the Yankees after waking up Saturday morning with a tight hamstring. He spent Monday’s off-day receiving treatment on the injury at Comerica Park and said he was ready to go.

One big reason Avila sat over the weekend was the worry that playing and tweaking the hamstring would cause a worse injury and a longer absence. This was pretty much the scenario that played out.

“I was hoping that, with the way I was feeling and the work I was doing, that I was going to be able to play, maybe not at 100 percent but enough to be fine,” Avila said. “It just wasn’t the case. Just got to figure it out.”

Avila threw out Shin-Soo Choo trying to advance to second on a pitch in the dirt to end the fifth inning, but was seen hobbling as he made his way back in the dugout. He promptly went down the tunnel towards the clubhouse.

Realistically, though, Avila said he’d been dealing with the tightness for most of the game.

“It was pretty tight, probably from the second inning on,” Avila said. “I started feeling it. It never really got loose. On that [throw], I really felt it pull and figured that right about there, I couldn’t really push it anymore.”

Gerald Laird, who also missed the previous two games with a tight right hamstring, replaced Avila to begin the sixth inning. The Tigers still have Omir Santos on the roster, so they’re not in an emergency scenario.

Still, they’re in a tough enough situation that Laird was trotting gingerly around the bases when he reached in the ninth inning.

“I just wanted to make sure I’m about it,” Laird said, pointing out that he wasn’t the potential tying run.

Holaday’s call-up will trigger a shuffle of the Tigers’ catching prospects, with highly-valued catching prospect Rob Brantly heading to Toledo. James McCann, last year’s top Tigers draft pick, is expected to take over at Erie after being called up from Class A Lakeland.

60 Comments

SOS

At this point it gets hard to place blame. I start with DD, he put together a crap team and allowed 2nd base to be ignored since Polanco was no longer needed by him. Then we have Jim “when you wish upon a star” Leyland. Then there are the individual players who refuse to step up and play the game the way a professional player should. I am leaving the coaches out, they are minimal compared to the others.

Who cares Laird is better than Avila right now. Avila is aweful?

Piece of crap team? More like under performing. Whining and complaining isn’t going to help, come up with a solution (and NO firing Leyland). Injuries have decimated the club at this moment. Berry came down to earth in this one, Smyly wasn’t smiling too much either. Bosch needs to sit when Austin comes back, needs to get his head straight (putting too much pressure on himself). Prince could show a little intensity, Miggy already is. Keep Ramon in the lineup, solid defensively and at least got on base twice. Like Matt’s defense tonight, didn’t expect much at the plate for his first game could see him thinking waaaay too much. Villereal looked good as did Below. Catching is a concern (health-wise) and Santos is not a long term answer behind the plate. Did Max Saint-Pierre retire? :-)

I’m not clear on your second sentence. It sounds like you’re telling us (the fans) to come up with a solution? Solutions are like…….uh……opinions, everybody’s got one. Or two. Or six. We read them all the time, the good ones and the bad ones.
If that’s not what you meant, my apologies.

I would like to say that whenever everyone gets healthy it would solve some problems. But I’m not sure that is the total answer. When Aj returns, can he bat 2nd as long as Berry hangs in there? Maybe AJ can find more power if he isn’t concerned about lead-off. Boesch needs to be re-cycled for sure. Why can’t JL or Sir Lloyd tell the hitters to be more patient? Who the he!! is running this team? Once a pitcher gives up 2 runs he starts pressing because he thinks his team won’t score 3 to help him.

Other than Fister, our first real injury was to Jackson. That was in the 37th game on May 16 and we were 18-19, having won only 9 of our previous 25 games. I only wish it could be only about injuries but, as you say, that’s not it entirely.
Maybe this stretch of bad health is a blessing in disguise since the club might get a little more energized when everyone returns. You know, you don’t miss someone till they’re gone type of thing?
Hitting Matt Young second really worked well, didn’t it? Strange move, strange, going by minor league OBP to set your lineup.

My guess is that maybe he thought he could get a walk if he showed patience before and has shwn speed. Atleast leyland tried something and to me it made some sense. Did it work, no, but that is because he is just one of several players who are not doing their jobs. He gets continually criticized, but he is trying different people in that 2 hole and nobody but Dirks stepped up to the plate. Jimenez is prone to many walks and wild pitches. Well not today.

By the way the ump had a Very large strike zone which favored a walk prone pitcher such as Jimenez. Not letting our players off the hook by any stretch just something I noticed.

Rich, here are a few other injuries that happened before Jackson’s injury during the 37th game. Inge started the regular season on the DL and the team got off to a fast start going 5-2.
Also, just before opening day Luis Marte had a very serious injury and we did not get him back until May 28th. Now we ended up with Below taking Marte’s spot in the bullpen and in my estimation he has become our best lefty out of the pen. Call this one of those silver linings.
Then in our 11th game Dirks went down with a hamstring injury scoring a run to help beat KC. Right after that we went 2-5 and I guess the silver lining was that since Dirks was day to day our manager could do the play Inge at 2nd base and slide RR to the outfield easier. During this slide we lost games 10-4, 10-3, and 9-1 which was our worst stretch of the season. Also at this time Schlereth went down with a possible season ending injury. Then after Inge was released we went to New York and Raburn had his second of two back to back games with two hits. He tweaked his hamstring and missed only one game but did not hit well when he returned. Like you said, when we arrived at the Jackson injury we were one game under .500.
Since Jackson went down we have lost Fister and Dirks to second injuries and both of our catchers, Avila and Laird, to various injuries. My hope right now is that around July 1st Jackson, Fister, Dirks, Avila, and Laird will all be back at 100%. Until they get back it is up to the men batting 5th thru 9th to pick up their injured teammates. Really you could say that Berry has so far done a good job of picking up Jackson. What was our record the first ten games that Jackson missed???

Im concerned about Avila. So many injuries aleady and trouble with knees, hamies, constant hits to the head. So many injuries already. Can the guy hold up for a whole season.
.
We all have opinions, grumbling, want to blame someone. Most of us are very disheartened. It’s devastating to the fans. We don’t even look competitive. Million
dollar players…….cry me a river. They won’t get rid of Leland, but that’s the first thing on my list.

My first one own would be the hitting coach, and that’s not because I m blaming him but there has to be an escape goat, and since Raburn and Inge weren’t the difference, maybe it’s the guy in charge of hitting.

Scapegoat=one who gets blamed; Escape goat=one who gets off??? I nominate JL for escape goat.

Well a number of things can be addressed. Start thinking small ball. most of our call ups are going to be fully capable of playing that style of baseball. Concentrate on that style of play and integrate the stars as they become healthy. just my opinion.

Leyland has got Dombrowski and Illitch fooled. He can pretty much say and (not) do anything he wants and he comes out of it unscathed. He is full of rhetoric and self deprecation that is utterly meaningless. He says he is to blame for playing Avila, that you can blame me for that. So what. What does that actually accomplish. He says everybody has to get better including me, sounds noble enough but they are hollow phrases. He says everybody is accountable, again he can say anything he wants. Before the game he says ”
It’s my responsibility to get the team clicking,” he said, “and we haven’t got it clickin….but I’m still responsible for that, so you have to take the heat.”
What heat? The beat goes incessantly on. Like I said once before–you can say whatever you want if there are no reprecussions. It sounds good but it addresses nothing.
I’m not blaming Alex’s injury on Leyland but for crying out loud man, say what you mean and mean what you say. Don’t grandstand for the media and the fans.
As to the players, it has got to the point that they will play up to expectations. Our expectations are getting lower every day.
In their defense, it must be bloody hard to even step out on the field for some of them. They have to actually be embarrassed in front of their fans.
Pretty soon it won’t matter if they dump Leyland or not. The season will be over and nothing will turn things around.
How anybody can defend Leyland in this mess is beyond me.

Amen.
.
— Bob

He is paying the overload of last year. There was many chances of resting him and he remained there. In august Inge was called up instead of Santos. The team had unneeded “flexibility ” with too many infielders and no backup catcher. Thet needed Avila to catch Texas, he is young so he can get take the load. No he couldnt. Yes, it is to blame on JL and DD.They overworked him till breaking him. Hitting the Dl ( too late) was expected since last year
And JV is going the same way. He is leading MLB in throws and innining pitched and his only challenger for that, King Felix is also struggling. Perhaps , he only needs to focus( Fancave, Conan, videogames, commercials) especially against the East( all his bad games have been against the professional hitters of the NY, BO and TA)
There is no way Below can be keep in the bullpen when he deserves to be a starter.
Boesch was hurt last year.He need to go to AAA to regain there his rhythm and perhaps find a swing that allow him to hit without hurting himself.
Worth can play SS,it is time to give some rest to Peralta.
I agree Leyland must go , the problem is thatprobbly MacClendon would be the replacement

I hope you are wrong about your last line as that would just be more of the same.
.
— Bob

Brookens.

Ditto

I agree with Brookens stepping in if Jim got the boot. You can tell Tommy is into each & every game and takes his post at 1st seriously. I could not stand Leyland’s comment regarding the team not being able to gel since there are so many moves. Leyland has said more than once he does not believe in team chemistry. Isn’t gelling part of team chemistry? I guess it depends on the day.

i took chemistry in HS and college….i don’t remember anything about ‘gelling’ being on the test (or in lab, either)

Since I was a fan of Brookens when he headed the committee , I would like too see him as manager too. But LLM is the predictable call by DD

Well OBVIOUSLY Avila is to blame. What the hell was he doing staying in the game if he knew, as he is quoted as saying, that his right hamstring was already TIGHT again in the SECOND INNING? He KNEW they were worried about putting him in because it could aggravate his hamstring and cause a longer absence. It was HIS responsibility to come into the dugout in the second inning and say, Hey, I know you’re worried about my aggravating this again, and it feels tight. I would dock the guy’s salary for the days he is out now, because he lied about his physical condition by not fessing up right away. If he had been HONEST, they could have pulled him in the second inning and spared the whole damn problem. I HATE players who lie about their physical condition. It is immoral and unprofessional

If I’m not mistaken, Santos was sent down, so who do you put in there? Laird, who is also injured? I see they have called up anothere catcher not named Santos.

Santos didn’t get sent down. Matt Young replaced Dirks when he went on the DL.

Bryan Holaday, a catcher, has been brought up according to the FREEP. Someone else will have to come off the 40 man.

at least Matt Young looks like he is going to help offensively. [chuckles]

Another problem with this organization is rearing its ugly head, DD and his scouts have given us virtually no one n the farm that can fill in at a reasonable rate. Look at the Red Soxs, practically there whole outfield is a minor league call up, they still manage to win some.

granderson and verlander were amazing finds…..but besides that…….slim pickings…..all “power” arms

I could tell he wasn’t feeling well at his first AB, he was grimacing and just wasn’t swinging right, looked stiff. Not good news for us, but we haven’t had much all year

Jackson injury has weakened the defense. In last nights game, I think he would’ve caught the first two triples. Berry plays too sallow and does not get near the jump that AJ does.

I thought the same but couldn’t be sure. Combine that with the two missed DPs and we lose. It doesn’t take much at this level. Hopefully the return of some of these guys, whenever it is, will give us a boost. Still six back, within striking distance. It’s also a very real possibility that this is just going to be a lost season. It happens. It’s difficult to become one of those teams that make the postseason every year.

I thought it a bad idea to hit Matt Young second last night before the game started. I saw him in ST and saw nothing. JL tried to explain it away with that OBP business (it’s .269 in the majors) but he was playing a hunch, trying to catch lightning in a bottle.
If he plugs him in there in the 2-hole again tonight, somebody needs to take Jim’s temperature. That’s the spot to put Santiago. If you have to use a warm body from the minors, put him at the bottom and limit his ABs.

Todd: “Scapegoat=one who gets blamed; Escape goat=one who gets off??? I nominate JL for escape goat.”
We have a winner!
I missed the part up there where we were voting for manager. I cast a ballot for Brookens too if the time comes this season.

Rich said what some of us are thinking, this might be a lost season. It would be hard to take, especially after the media predicted the Tigers would make it all the way to the WS. As down as we get on the Tigers we will still hold out hope, but at some point their failure this season might become a no turning back fact and us fans will have to let go of 2012. I hope they turn it around, starting tonight.

lots of baseball left people. 6.5 games out of 1st in the AL central with over a 100 games left.

and if we’re 13.5 out at the trade deadline – then i’m sure well get some good compensation for who we trade away (2 wild card teams means it’s a sellers market this trade deadline)

We’re not dead yet, not after 55 games. Just mentioning the possibility. Rumors of our demise have been greatly exaggerated.

Did anyone hear why Santos was brought up before Avila and Laird were injured???

It was a conspiracy? Leyland is psychic?
No, I think JL wanted Laird available to pinch run if need be for a few days.

And to DH.

My guess was to be able to DH Laird to get him some at bats against RH pitching. I think he was being showcased before his injury, and whoever was looking was curious if he could maintain production against RH pitching.

Looks like DD is doing some inventory. Checking what we have and getting ready to maybe be a buyer. Or looking at what we have so he knows what he can sell. One way or the other I think we will be pretty active this Trade Deadline.

If I remember correctly, Santos was hitting great at AAA but carrying 3 catchers did not make sense. This young Holaday they are bringing up was a team captain at TCU and was a leader on that team that went deep in the NCAA’s. I wonder if there is a trade in the works? All this shuffling is like throwing darts blindfolded.

Lots of “great” AAA hitters have never done squat in the Bigs. Our guys have got to try to work a count rather than swing at pitch # 1. Take that Delmon and Brennon.

I agree that Laird has been showcased recently. Q. Berry being showcased?? Could be. Why was Raburn sent to Toledo and Worth given four starts?? Trading partners want to see what these players can do at MLB level. Add Casey Crosby in there. I really thought that DD was trying to get something done before we went to Cincy. The injury to Fister may have slowed the process down. He needs to know if he should be in the market for a 2nd sacker a starting pitcher, or BOTH. REmember when Zach Miner came up from Toledo and won five or six straight?? The last two years our call ups as starters haven’t won a game. Come on Casey!!!
A win tonight might get you a job with a pennant contender. And by no means do I think that we are not in the race in the AL Central.

We have some really good baseball minds here on this b log. Mark/Rich–you guys brought something up that I didn’t want to (I know am pretty negative and I try to control it!) about Berry. I also think there have been at least 5 fly balls that have landed for extra bses that austin would have caught up to. Berry has fillend in better than we could have hoped and made some really great catches but you guys are absolutely right about the jump, th positioning and the read. Makes me appreciate AJ that much more. Berry could play left (his arm is not that great) if AJ gets back soon. Dirks can right when he gets back. It is only a matter of time before common sense explodes in Leyland’s brain and Boesch is sent down to get it right.
The only reason he must still be here is the lack of bodies out there.
This does not mean I think Berry is our leftfielder that we so badly need. He could start looking like Matt Young as the jury is still deliberating on him. Young doesn’t belong up here. The 2nd spot was ridiculous.
I also think that Salt Lake Tiger fan was right about Laird. I think they felt that they might get something for him with his good start and dood reputation. Those cards are off the table now though I think.
The reason I like Brookens, well actually there are several, is that he is not a crony of JL. At least not one that has been contaminated yet. He has a sharp mind, is Tiger through and through and is well respected.
There are a couple of folks here who think this should not be all dumped on Leyland. True. But enough for him to be “accountable” for sure. Get used to visualizing another manager because if this incompetence and lethargy persists much longer he will be fired (scape-goated if you like).

Does anyone here seriously believe Holaday or Ortega are going to help with anything?

If you get FSD+, the Tiger are taking batting practice.

Mr. D is there and legendary is watching all of them. The music is blasting and they also showed the fielders practicing. JL is out there too hitting them ground balls.

Delmon hit a homer.

There’s Rod.

Miggy’s hitten ‘em all over. HR’s

Is anyone else watching this? It feels like you are right there. Cool!!!

If they hit anything like they are doing in BP, we will win. Victor is there, too. Didn’t see him take BP, though.

Indians BP coming up next.

Well, the Indians are hitting too.

and practicing bunts. Didn’t see that from the Tigers.

How long is this coaching staff going to get the bye? Isn’t there some responsibility on their shoulders to “teach” any of the young players that are coming up and going back down. I don’t blame DD at all – I think his track record shows he can build a winner. I just think that Leyland and his staff – well it’s time for a change. Time to break up that “buddy network” that he and his staff have been living off for decades.

There’s no teaching going on – and at this level it’s fair to argue there shouldn’t be. But when you continue to bring up rookies and the line between average and very good in a ballplayer is razor thin – you have to build these players that fill the holes in the lineup around Miggy and Prince. Jim has always protected his clubs by being the grumpy old man talking to the press where they’re literally afraid to ask him any question that man set him off. Time for a change here in the D!

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