Leyland: Sitting Delmon last night was my decision

Jim Leyland had hinted as far as back as late last week that he was thinking about DHing Prince Fielder and sitting Delmon Young against Indians sinkerballer Justin Masterson.

Then last night, Leyland hinted on his pregame radio show that Young didn’t want to face Masterson, which led to the argument on sports radio stations that Young might have pulled himself out of the lineup.

Leyland, whose quotes (taken correctly or not) caused the commotion, tried to clear it up during his pregame remarks Wednesday.

The decision for Young to not play, Leyland said, was a “managerial decision. That was planned four or five days ahead of time. If Delmon was going to get a blow, it was going to be a guy that he was 3-for-20 off of, that he doesn’t have any success with. I would say it was a mutual decision.”

The mutual part, Leyland seemed to suggest, was about what day to give Young a rest.

“This is what I believe about that, and a lot of people don’t realize this: Delmon Young is swinging so good right now, and you get a guy that he struggles with like Masterson, it might put him in a slump for three or four days. So it made a lot of sense,” Leyland said. “If you’re going to give him a blow, that’s when you’re going to do it. I mean, it’s in the book: 3-for-20. He doesn’t handle him very well. …

“If I would’ve wanted Delmon Young to play, he would’ve played. You look for matchups all the time. Sometimes it doesn’t work out that way because of what your choices are. The choices here were a lot of left-handed hitters that do a lot better against Masterson. That was as simple as A-B-C. That’s a no-brainer.”

Young declined to talk before batting practice Wednesday.

I’ll say this: One thing consistent about Leyland is that he lets matchups dictate his lineup with a lot of guys (ok, maybe not Ryan Raburn). He has sat players for bad numbers with far fewer at-bats, even guys on a tear. It’s still worth noting that Young was in the starting lineup when the Tigers faced the Indians May 24 in Cleveland. He went 0-for-3 with a strikeout. He still had three hits in his next game in Minnesota.

“Sometimes guys are in a good groove, and you want to leave them in a good groove,” Leyland said. “So you give them some miserable matchup and you take them out of the lineup for that day. It’s just like some lefty that’s swinging good and you’ve got a nasty left-handed pitcher, you might not play him because you don’t want him to get his swing screwed up for the next righty that he’s going to face. This was an absolute no-brainer for me. Masterson gives Delmon fits. I mean, he’s 3-for-20 with five strikeouts.”

67 Comments

As I said yesterday, I thought this was overblown. Perhaps it’s just an accumulation of frustration taken out on this one lineup decision. I see it’s still being talked about. Yesterday’s breakfast, but still being served piping hot. What a year this has been.

To be honest, when I first heard it, I thought it was a diversionary tactic to take away from the fact that the guys who were in the lineup didn’t hit. They got four hits off Masterson, and Don Kelly had one of them (not at the right time, though).

Jimingeing is all I get from the quotes.

Leyland is full of the same stuff he accuses reporters of trying to dredge up.
He was a good manager. He’s not any more. It happens.
Young didn’t need “a blow” and neither did AJ. They are young and they appear to be injury free.
What does he need to rest them for? Their golf game or hunting trip?
There are a couple of dozen games left. With the ongoing problem of hitting at the right times, I would suggest you not give any of your better hitters the night off.
If JL is ever to direct these guys to enough victories to move on, he will need to understand that waiting for someone to pound one off the wall is a longshot. He will need to remember how to sacrifice bunt if he gets the 1st 2 guys in an inning. He will need to steal with Austin Jackson. He will need to speak to a few players to remind them of what is expected of them at the plate in certain situations. He will have to make a guy take a pitch.
Needing ” a blow”?? Absolute claptrap, Not when we have seen him manage other players (Avila & Boesch) in similar situations and played them. Not when he could have at least DH’d Cabby when he was limping badly. Or pinch run for him in the 8th the other day.
Can anyone tell me how man games Leyland’s brain has won for the team this year?
How many strokes of managerial brilliance we’ve seen?
He needs to win a couple of games for us.

Right on, Dan

MVP: leader in avg and RBI

No matter how bad some games are I watch just to see Miggy play. Like Rod says “he is special”.

We sure are lucky they still occasionally pitch to him.

They pitch to him because of Prince.

What a nice ball player that Kipnis is. 2 strikes don’t bother him, he hits the Tigers with authority, makes a lot of range-type plays at 2nd and will steal you a base.

Here we go……Fister falling a part and Jimenez settling down and Tigers hitters rolling over!

Nice 5 pitch inning for Jimenez…….rolling over!

Infante .076 in September…..143 last 7 days and .240 last 30 days. Dude has really fallen off. The black whole of 2nd base in Detroit.

Stressful six pitch inning there in the 7th… Jimenez hasn’t even worked up a sweat! Pathetic……oh ya another bad pitcher having one of the best games of the year against the Tigers hitters. Home many bad pitchers have had their best games of the year against the Tigers?

Good job for Benoit to get out of that mess. Nice turn on the double play!

PR now. A little late.

Yes, bench him againt RHP

What’s this? Runs?

For the record JP RISP2O: 326/463/1.091

Keeping the pace

I’d love to have that photo of jumping Jhonny on that defensive gem!

A win is a win at this stage. Nice rally in the 8th after the guys finally loosened up. Before that, we were displaying that one thing that’s been killing us: lack of patience at the plate. Not working counts. Ubaldo went into the 8th with 81 pitches. That’s ridiculous and something that can be addressed if the guys are listening anymore.
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Our pitching has been outstanding. Just outstanding. We could just as easily be on a 10-game win streak with a timely hit here or there.
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I hate to begin screaming for Garcia because it might become a disaster, but Boesch is doing nothing. His entire swing needs to be retooled this offseason. Meanwhile, the kid brings speed, youth, enthusiasm, and excitement. It’s worth a try, Jim. Just try it. Maybe he helps us win some games before the pitchers figure him out. Maybe not. What’s to lose?
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I don’t know about you, but I wasn’t too thrilled with Jason Donald’s headlong dive into the stands. He went in length-wise and took out an entire row of people. Someone could have been seriously hurt. You look out for baseballs, thrown bats, but how do you avoid being flattened by a large athletic young man? I may have punched him just from instinct. Next time, dive into the empty seats and take your chances. Just my take on that.
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We live to fight another day. We’re going down to the final week, maybe the final day.
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By the way, anybody get a weird feeling from seeing Jason Donald in his blue Cleveland jersey and Jim Joyce umping at 1st base?

Yep on that last question? The crazy thing that play today was a lot closer than the one in the perfect game. And yes it was a perfect game.

Sure nice to not get swept again by a cellar dweller.
Amazing how JL just can’t get these guys loose for any length of time. Guess it is why he never has had success with teams with expectations.
BB should never see the 5 or 6 with his HR the other day getting two servings of a hanging slider.
I am feeling better about this road trip being against better teams.
Nothing comes close to a baseball season for the ongoing drama of a pennant race.

I see Garcia got a hit off a RHP. Solid hit? Pull field or off field?
Just curious.

Swing bunt, 45 footer.

Beat it down onto the plate and beat it out. Solid enough for me. Berry may have beaten it out. Nobody else.

Good evening everyone. Detroit Tigers pitching for the past two weeks has been absolutely stellar. Even in our losses, the pitching, both starting, and finishing the game was spot on. That’s the reason I am convinced the Tigers will win the Central next year. And, with an out break like tonight’s 8th. inning, we might still win the Central this year. I’m convinced of several things 136 games into this season. First, Miguel Cabrera is the best pure hitter in the game today. Second, Prince Fielder has a marvelous set of hands, to go with a good set of eyes. Third, Justin Verlander, on his worst day, is better than 90% of all major league pitchers on their best day. Fourth, Max Scherzer will win a Cy Young Award in the not to distant future. Fifth, Austin Jackson is the best defensive center fielder in the major leagues. Sixth, Jhonny Peralta, is a fundamentally sound shortstop; no flash, no dash, just plain sound. Seventh, and last, Al and Brayon make a dynamic duo coming out of the pen. I could go much further, but the point is simple: our team’s future is bright.Need I say Garcia, Rondon, Castellanos, Smyly. A couple of fine tunings, and we are positioned well for the future.
Let me mention three things that I really liked about tonight’s game:

1. Biggy’s 3-6-3 Double Play in the top of the 6th. No big deal, but so very well executed. Maybe Prince is afraid of losing his job to Miggy.
2. Miggy’s first inning HR to put us ahead in the first inning. We hadn’t been ahead in the series before then.
3. Ajax gets the first walk from Ubaldo, and then the gates opened. We haven’t been taking enough walks.

Two good swings by Alex tonight. As Rich mentioned, it’s time for Boesch to sit. bring in the kid. Let him have his hacks. Could not be any worse than what Brennon is doing now. Mister Fister is a mean dude when he’s on the money. As we head West, I’m really hoping for 7-3. That would keep us going to the end. Good night all!

As we’ve seen already, trying to predict outcomes based on the schedule is about as hopeless as ridding the world of Elvis impersonators. Can’t be done. The Angels just swept the A’s. The A’s were due for a cool down but are the Angels coming on? Looks like no Weaver this weekend? At the least, we need to avoid being swept there and gain a split in Chicago, thus extending the race. What a team with our talent should do is much more than that. It’s an opportunity to grab control of the thing. We’ll see.
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Garcia replaced Boesch for defense. What does it all add up to?
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This could be a very interesting offseason. I hope it is.

Thanks. I’ll have to check that out.
From what I did see, Fister showed no ill effects. Been a tough year for him.
Boesch needs professional help. His swing is so off it’s ridiculous. There is no smooth entry into the hitting zone whatsoever. He dives and dips and jerks, pulls off the ball. Almost everything you are taught not to.
Still has scads of potential as a hitter. Not sure the club should wait for it to happen. He may have more value to us in a trade.

Thank goodness we did not get swept – the team looked good at the end of the game, but 2 5-pitch innings at the plate – ridiculous! Cabrera and pitching has kept us in this race, he is amazing to have on the team – even not fully healthy he is still belting them out, and nice to see Prince get another one and to left field to boot! This race will come down to the end I am convinced, with us right on the rear of the Sox til the end, question is can we do it?

Thank goodness we avoid the negative sweep. Those are often fatal in September. Two runs. Two days in a row. Runs?? We can’t get hits!!!!!!!! What’s the remedy??. GO THE OPPOSITE WAY!!! That’s been the answer all year long. Miguel led by example in the first. Pow!!! Homer to right. Then in the eighth we explode for five add on runs, including a Prince Fielder opposite field homer. Wow!!
Our final out Alex hits a blue darter to the leftfielder !!!!!!!! Are we ready for these next ten on the road?? It’s always good to finish the homestand with a win and in this case a 4-2 record.

Al Avila said that Aníbal Sánchez is regarded as a second starter. Here is why:
Aníbal Sánchez career numbers compared to Scherzer:
ERA 3.79 (3.92) WHIP:1.366(1.307) H/9 8.9 (8.7) HR/9 0.8(1.1)BB/9: 3.4 (3.1)SO/9 7.5(9.3) SO/BB 2.21 (3.03)

defense hurts your pitching. But would you agree the defense can deflate or spark the offense, sometimes?

didn’t last night the 2nd baseman of the twins NOT catch a foul ball he should have? Didn’t johnny P make a good play at SS to end the top of the 8th?

Did anyone else see that girl who got hit by Donald’s diving catch? oh my gosh I felt so bad for her. sad

I commented on that above in this thread. You don’t read what we write, do you? ;-)

touche – not as carefully as i should apparently

Just yankin’ your chain, Homey.

How do you miss the annual team photo session?

Realistically those Elvis impersonators should be aging a little bit too. Makes me wonder if they’re real impersonators.

You mean……….those are fake Elvi?

I think they should be fined severely for such a transgression. $25 sounds about right.

The one run losses are demoralizing. What would their record be if they’d won just half of those. We wouldn’t be talking about this race coming down to the final day. Shouldn’t be.

The offense will only wake up if they collectively start taking a fundamentally different approach. Take more pitches, work the count, force the opposing pitcher to throw more pitches and get into the bull pens earlier. If the first batter swings at the first pitch and puts the ball into play as an out, the next two hitters owe it to their pitcher to take some pitches and extend the inning.
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The team’s bench has gotten stronger with the call ups. Quite a bit stronger I think. While that’s a rather obvious statement, still the pen has immediately gotten much better with Al Albq if that was an example of the level he’s at. Plus with Garcia, JL has two fast base runners he can use as well as defensive replacements.
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They’re having a homerun derby in Baltimore.

I hope someone gives some “instruction” in the instructional league to Nick Castellanos about proper proper baseball hat styles. Sure don’t like that Ricky Romero look too much!.Some things just shouldn’t change!

We absolutely NEED 6 wins on this road trip. I was inclined to say 7 but given the way we’ve been playing that is a lot to ask or hope for.
We will need Omar to start hitting line drives again. We will need Boesch to chip in with some extra base power and we will need Avila to play 50% better than he has been. We need some offensive explosiveness because to expect the kind of starting pitching we’ve been getting is unrealistic.

Against Santana:
Laird:286/.273/.749
DY:318/.348/.848
Sit Peralta:3 for 22 3 SO
Miguel:308/.400/.938
Fielder will get IBB every AB:.571/.667/2.095
Omar Infante 1 for 8
Jackson: 1 for 8 Today was a good option to rest him.
Boesch : 0 for 5
Avila: 0 for 3

I posted the AB of those with little samples and no success. Here the full ABs.
Laird 6 for 21 /4 SO
DY 7 for 22
Miguel:4 for 13
Fielder : 4 for 7
He allowed 8 hits 4 runs ( 2 ER) with 2 BB and and 2 SO against Detroit just after allowing 8 runs on 8 hits to Cle.Jul 16

Berry 1 for 3. Dirks 1 for 2. Ramón 1 for 3

Those are actually pretty discouraging stats. You would kinda want Boesch in there for the “possibility” of running into one. (Starting to sound like JL now!)
Much the same could be said for Avila but you can’t deny the success Laird has had. I do assume that is a very small sample though.
Would seem a time to get Ramon some PT. Either for Peralta or Omar.
The strength of the Angels RHB will be the biggest factor in this series IMO. Can they be contained?

Posts here are appearing out of chronological sequence again. Remember when the BLOG was doing that all the time?
Thanks Tigre for the stats.
Santana scares me a little bit. This should be the best matchup of the weekend tonight. Fingers crossed.
If Omar get up with a man on 1st and nobody out—BUNT—especially if it 1st & 2nd.
Same goes for Ramon or Avila. I know Avila can bunt if he has to. I wouldn’t ask Peralta or Young or the other obvious guys to try to.
Boesch can beat out DP balls most times. Dirks too.

No, it is working well. I replied to my own post after reading yours. It makes mine easier to read.

This series is so important and a big one for Alex Avila/Gerald Laird. They have to control the running game.

Let’s just take it one game at a time. I sure would love a Tiger win tonight. It would make my day…….my birthday! Go Tigers!!!!!!!!!!!1

Clubhouse speech: “Every game, every inning, every pitch–be a Tiger!”

what kind of frenzy will occur if Peralta is benched for Santiago tonight? the numbers favor it and Peralta hasn’t had a gameday off in a month.

Last year , Peralta played 146 games, 123 of first 136 . This year he has played 125 of 136 .And I have his last day game out on august 8.

Weird to be sure. Youngsters like AJ and yes, DY need those days off (according to the skipper).
Peralta has been pretty consistent this year. He actually stabilizes the infield even with his lack of range. He is always a threat to yard one though he gets into ruts consistently too. Far too many DPs this year IMO. At least it seems like it.

Peralta puts together a pretty good AB. I’ve said this before but I’ll continue to say it as long as he continues to do it. He’s been getting fooled on the put-away pitch, and he’s also hit in some plain ol’ bad luck. He can’t carry the bottom part of order by himself, but he sure could contribute along with 1 or 2 other guys. I’m more concerned with a guy like Boesch, only because there are alternatives. I’d love to see Brennan try to build a two-hand swing over the winter. It would stop him from reaching, and that’s what’s killing him up there.

I’ll be honest, my fear is that we’ve already blown it over the last month. We needed to be ahead in the standings going into this trip. I’m not giving up and I certainly think they can still win it, but they’ve made it very difficult on themselves. More difficult than it needed to be.

Listening to the Baltimore announcers last night (Gary Thorne and Mike Bordick, much better than the crew that came to Detroit last month), they were talking about Buck Showalter’s mantra, for lack of a better word. It’s “stay in the moment.” It means that yesterday doesn’t matter, tomorrow doesn’t matter, your previous AB doesn’t matter. All that matters is THIS AB or THIS pitch you’re about to throw, etc. Although similar in philosophy, I prefer this to Leyland’s “not too high not too low.” The latter seems to lead to, you guessed it, .500 ball. Players will buy into these things, for better or worse.

@tigers: Jackson 8, Dirks 7, Cabrera 5, Fielder 3, Young dh, Boesch 9, Peralta 6, Avila 2, Santiago 4. Scherzer is starting.

He will keep BB at 6 or 5 til he is finished at the Tigs, one way or the likely other.

Brantley just went deep for the Marlins. #2. Turner pitching.

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