Early notes: Boesch day-to-day with oblique tightness

It’s all relative, but it’s a chilly morning by Florida standards in Lakeland, where Bruce Rondon is scheduled to throw to hitters this afternoon. One hitter who will not be taking part today is Brennan Boesch, who tweaked his right oblique while taking swings on Saturday.

It’s a precautionary move, Boesch said. Better to miss a few days now and be ready when games begin next weekend than to have this linger. Remember, Boesch was bothered by minor injuries last spring training, including lower back soreness and a bad ankle.

“It’s February. I don’t want to take any chances right now,” Boesch said. “Get it over with so I can get plenty of at-bats in Spring Training. …

“I’m optimistic I’ll be out there in the next day or two. The most important thing is not rushing it so I get all the at-bats I need in spring to compete and to prepare for the season.”

Other notes from Sunday morning:

  • Look for the Tigers to get Rule 5 pick Jeff Kobernus some time in left field this spring as they try to determine just how useful the speedy right-handed hitter can be as a utility player. Kobernus was almost exclusively a second baseman in the Nationals system the last four years, but said he did outfield work this winter to prepare. With his speed and his success against left-handed pitching in the minors (.326 last year at Double-A Harrisburg, .306 at Harrisburg in 2011), he definitely has manager Jim Leyland’s attention. “I think he’s a very interesting guy,” Leyland said, “and he will definitely get every possible look to see if he’s a fit or not.”
  • Leyland says they have 15 legitimate candidates for the bullpen, including sure things like Joaquin Benoit, Phil Coke and Octavio Dotel. It’s a good number to have, and potentially could give them some options at the end of camp as well as into the season, but the closer question is going to have an impact throughout the bullpen unless they have one guy who can take hold of the job.


Speed and numbers like that against southpaws will get Kobernus looked at seriously. Tough to waltz in to a new team and major league training camp and change positions. Fingers crossed.

Kobernus also has the advantage of size. He is not a pipsqueak speedster by any means. Being 24 he might develop some power as well. The problem, as I see it, is he is a 2B man. That does not automatically make him an alternative at short or 3rd, let alone left field. We need to see if he has baseball “character”.

dirks has good baseball character, for example

For sure. One of my favourite character players is Dustin Pedroia. Looks like Trout is cut from the same cloth.

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if the team does not get a “good look” at boesch this ST….do they cut him or keep him for ole ‘hopes and dreams’ sake?

“Good question”

i guess it probably depends more on dirks, berry, kobernus, garcia and kelly…..and jackson and hunter (if one were to….[won’t jinx it]).

BB will be a tough call, regardless. On the one hand, he has shown flashes of brilliance. On the other hand, BB will be a 28-year-old this season and should be at his peak. If BB doesn’t show enough for whatever reason(s) to offset his flaws and past inconsistency, I think his fate will be decided by the performances of his competitors.

Not to change the subject, but there is a very interesting article by Morosi with Shawalter on Fox Sports MLB about the new rules with pitchers who can no longer fake a throw to 3rd and throw to 1st. He thinks steals will be way up.

yep another stoopid mlb rule

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