Wednesday: Time to guess the roster

I haven’t done something like this before, with all the speculation this spring, I figured it was worth a shot, seeing how it worked for some of MLB.com’s other beat guys. Plus, it’s the off-day when the Tigers usually start getting down to debates like this.

From the closer to the fifth starter to the right-handed hitting outfielder to the back of the bullpen, the Tigers have decisions to make over the next week and a half. Some of them will be made sooner than that, either because of opt-out clauses or because they’re easier to make. Others might go down to the last home game of the spring next Friday, because they’re tough choices or because they’ll leave as much time as possible for a potential trade or roster add.

Here’s a projection on what all will happen, starting with what we know — the lineup. Jim Leyland announced this early in camp, and he put it on the field Tuesday for the local audience watching back in Michigan on TV. No matter what the Tigers do over the next week and a half, this part isn’t changing. So let’s fill the first nine spots on the 25-man roster with them.

  1. Austin Jackson
  2. Torii Hunter
  3. Miguel Cabrera
  4. Prince Fielder
  5. Victor Martinez
  6. Andy Dirks
  7. Jhonny Peralta
  8. Alex Avila
  9. Omar Infante

That leaves four bench spots. One of them goes to the backup catcher, Brayan Pena. Another bench spot goes to a utility infielder. If Ramon Santiago is healthy, he’s the primary guy there.

At least one of the other two spots will go to the right-handed hitting outfielder about which we’ve written so often this spring. As good of a spring as Nick Castellanos is having, he needed more time in the minors. Dave Dombrowski was on record heading into camp saying that Castellanos and Avisail Garcia won’t break camp with the team if they’re just going to be part-time players. Garcia’s injury all but takes him out of serious consideration. It shouldn’t be a lingering matter that costs him a lot of time at the start of the season, but Opening Day is pretty well out of the question.

Jeff Kobernus has done plenty well enough to find a role on this team, and well enough that the Tigers would have a tough time working out a deal to send him to the minors without paying something substantial. As big of a surprise as he has been, Matt Tuiasosopo might rival that with his recent power stretch. If the Tigers were in another situation, needing a power bat off the bench to boost an offensively challenged situation, Tuiasosopo might have a better chance of cracking the roster. For this team, though, Kobernus provides more of the skill set that the Tigers are looking for in an extra outfielder and role player off the bench.

That leaves one spot between Quintin Berry, Don Kelly and Danny Worth. If Kobernus is on the team, he basically overlaps the speed infusion that Berry brings while covering the outfield much the same. And much like Boesch, Berry’s lack of infield versatility is a hindrance in this case. Even before Berry’s recurrent patellar tendinitis, it was very difficult to envision Detroit keeping both Kobernus and Berry out of the gate.

This is where the fan outrage starts to pick up, because this is where Kelly’s versatility around the infield and outfield starts to separate him. He played a serviceable game in center field Monday against the Nationals in Berry’s place, and while his hot start at the plate has cooled off over the last week, he still has looked like he has a better idea what he wants to do in the batters box and less of a sense that he’s overmatched like he did last year. There’s some projection to make on how he’ll handle the same role in a different year, and that projection is going to have to come by early next week when his opt-out clause can be kicked in, but he has the strongest chance.

Worth’s chance at making this club would be a lot stronger if the Tigers weren’t looking for a right-handed hitting outfielder. He has shown a much better bat this spring, though he too has cooled off over the last week. You can actually make the case that Worth is a fundamentally sound baserunner who could serve as a pinch-runner for Victor Martinez in late-inning situations, though he’s not a speedster.

In the end, Berry and Worth can be optioned to the minors. Kelly, as was written earlier this week, has an opt-out clause that would allow him to ask for his release if he’s not added to the 25-man roster for Opening Day. That and Kobernus’ Rule 5 status might well serve as tiebreakers.

  1. Brayan Pena
  2. Ramon Santiago
  3. Jeff Kobernus
  4. Don Kelly

Is it a formidable bench hittingwise? No, but that’s not really what the Tigers are looking for here. They don’t need a Marcus Thames type of catalyst as much as they did in past years. They want guys to fit roles for them and complement the offensive talent they already have on their lineup (a defensive replacement or two, a pinch-runner for V-Mart, occasional starts to spell the middle infielders and the catcher). If the Tigers were looking for more and had the playing time to offer for it, Castellanos would’ve had a better chance to build off his hot start.

The bench is pretty easy to figure out compared to the pitching staff, where the Tigers’ decisions on a fifth starter and a closer have an impact up and down the roster. And nobody could’ve anticipated both of the potential starters pitching as well as they have.

In theory, Rick Porcello’s performance should make it easier to trade him, especially since the improvements he has made address some of the biggest questions about his game. But the better he pitches, the bigger the issue about getting fair value, what fits the Tigers’ needs better, and which needs the Tigers would fill in a trade.

I would be surprised if the Tigers traded Porcello simply to get a closer. Even if you question whether Bruce Rondon is the closer of the present (more on that later), he’s clearly the closer of the future. If you’re going to trade for a reliever, you’d better believe he can slot into a setup role in the very near future. Trading three seasons of Porcello straight up for, say, two seasons of Andrew Bailey is a tough proposition if you see Rondon as your closer for more than half of that time. Even in win-now mode, you’d like a little more than that.

I’m not sure if that deal is out there right now. It might have a better chance during the summer. The appeal of 2 1/2 seasons of Porcello to a team not likely to contend for a while could be less than it is now, but the field of potential closers has a better chance to grow.

There’s also this: The Tigers have six starters right now. I’m not sure, at least right now, what they have after that. And considering the Tigers have a starting rotation that has pitched extended innings in back-to-back seasons, that depth question should be as unnerving to some as the closer question is to others. Leyland not-so-subtly hinted at this last week.

Not sure about the order just yet, but here’s a guess at the list:

  1. Justin Verlander
  2. Anibal Sanchez
  3. Doug Fister
  4. Max Scherzer
  5. Rick Porcello

That leaves the question of what to do with Drew Smyly, who either has to go to the bullpen or go to Toledo. And that leads into the question of what the Tigers do at closer.

Rondon has been very good since the mechanical adjustment a couple weeks ago. If you’re going to make an argument that he shouldn’t be in the big leagues, then there’s a fairly good chance your mind was locked in on that before spring training began, and nothing short of striking out every hitter was going to change.

Stuffwise, Rondon can compete with a lot of closers out there. The question is whether he’s ready to close full time now, and the answer might come down as much to perception as to practice. The Tigers could install Rondon as the closer right now and commit themselves to weathering the questions along the way, or they could use Rondon as part of a committee and pick and choose his save chances according to the situations. Either way, they’re going to get questioned. The one difference is that with the committee, the questions aren’t all centered on one guy.

If the Tigers go with the committee, the fifth, sixth and seventh relievers become a lot more important for filling situations in the seventh and eighth innings on occasion. And the ability for a long reliever to do more than eat innings becomes much more important. In the end, as long as Porcello is pitching well and sticking around, the combination of a long relief and second lefty relief is the best chance for Smyly to make this team out of camp. It looks far from clear, but you can pick up the hints. It would be a tough break for Darin Downs, who has quietly had a fairly good spring trying to nail down a lefty relief role.

From there, it’s not difficult to write down the rest of Detroit’s bullpen:

  1. Bruce Rondon
  2. Joaquin Benoit
  3. Octavio Dotel
  4. Phil Coke
  5. Al Alburquerque
  6. Brayan Villarreal
  7. Drew Smyly

So there you have it. Something on this list will probably end up wrong, either through a roster move at the end of camp, an unforeseen injury or simply a decision to go in another direction on one of these spots. But here’s an educated guess.

96 Comments

Personally, I would like to see someone on the bench who has some pop. Whether it is a semi-platoon or fill-in situation with Dirks, or a pinch-hitter against NL teams, it seems wise to have punch available.

And yes, your article was well done and things will probably play out the way you have projected given the current cast of characters. Nevertheless, that bench is a weak hitting group and I don’t see any defensive giants in the grouping.

Good article Jason, you are the man. Blog fans, Jason took a hard foul ball off the leg and did not flinch. The point to remember in the article is that the bench will all be role players. There are not going to be any platoons. If someone other than Alex hits the DL, I would look for the hottest AAA hitter to see a lot of time filling in. Kelly gives a lot of flexibility off the bench, has a little pop and his a great team guy.

Dirks has an injury history. Jim and Dan have talked about 200 ABs to offset Dirks. DD and JL have repeatedly talked about filling time for Dirks. More than a role player is needed here, otherwise the Tigers would not have hunted so hard for a RHB. Kelly? Nice guy and versatile. No pop and does not hit for average. Check his stats.

Kelly is 33 and in decline. He hit .186 with 1 HR last year.

to be fair – don kelly has very little pop. never slugged over .400, and only hit 1 last year in ~115 abs.

I agree 100 percent. Great article as always. Keep up the great work. You are my favorite tigers writer.

very cool. agreed. thanks jason.

I do agree with Jason, I like to give the job to Kobernus but he only hit 220 and 0 SB and his D in LF is probably weak. I thought Russo would be in the running.

yea those are good points, just hard to discredit his defense and stealing ability when there isn’t much of a sample size to look at

That’s exactly how I see it playing out, and for the exact same reasons, so it’s nice to have it spelled out like that. Thank you very much, Jason.
And as always, that roster will probably be different by the end of April.

On the lack of steals by Kobernus, I wonder at the reason. No opportunities? No green light? Still learning pitchers? He stole ‘em in the minors so he should be able to steal ‘em up here.

I agree with all your points. I just don’t see Kobernus making it. Especially since he needs to stay on the roster ALL YEAR. That is too much of a committment for a contending team. I see Worth making the team instead, he seems like a solid glove a 3B, SS and 2B. Would you Kobernus instead of Santiago? I think Detroit goes with the veteran. And Berry can be put in the minors to start and be brought up as needed.
I could also see Smyly starting the year at Toledo, to get some work in for the first couple weeks. If you keep Smyly behind, I would bring Downs up to be a long reliever.

wait can’t you just make a trade for the guy or give him back if you cut him, midseason, from the 25 man?

You could make a trade, yes. Otherwise when you remove him from the roster he must be offered back to his parent club for peanuts. $25k I think

even if it is mid-june when you release him?

Can’t release him, have to offer him back to Washington, who will surely pay and put him in AA, where he probably should be this year.

Well if someone is under performing then u can always bring someone up. The reason i think kobernus over berry or anyone else is because they at least gotta give it a shot to keep him in the bigs otherwise there would have been no point in signing him. I personally dont think spring performance should play to big in the decision making. Ya you can trade for him but it would b kinda dumb to not even try it 1st.

To me the biggest knock against Kobernus is that he isn’t exactly a kid and has never proven he can do anything other tan steal bases. He cannot hit and if he can’t hit and get on base there is no reason to have him on the team….not on base can’t steal.

they must know something besides his minor league stats….which confirm what GK just said. http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=kobern002jef#standard_batting::none

then again, his minor league batting numbers are kinda better than QBs…

I have to assume that this organization knows what it’s doing. From my personal observation, I saw a guy with some skills. Maybe one needs to see the other minor leaguers to make the comparison.

Thoughtful balanced and therefore excellent article as always Jason.
Can’t disagree with the logic keeping all the support guys in some form knowing none of them have much more upside with the possible exception of Worth. also know they are all going to get their shot at some stage.
Depth has always been my biggest concern with the best example of the bare Tig cupboard being highlighted last December. When you release your then #5 prospect, Adam Wilk and trade your also then #5 prospect, Andrew Oliver for a #20 ranked catcher in Ramon Cabrera, you know an awful lot of development is needed and in a hurry.

I think Danny Worth is actually NEEDED on this squad. He can pick it and is o,n the verge of finding a comfort level in the bigs. I would take him ahead of Ramon and ahead of Kobernus. This team needs defense and Worth is the guy that can bring that to the table.
Let Kobernus and 2E fight it out for that LF backup job.

Im not saying that those four are the four that should be up. Im just saying those are the logical choices to start with. I personally like worth or even tuisasopo and im sure they will all get there chance and the tigers as always will do a great job at strategically maneuvering through them until they find something that sticks.

kobernus cant hit so his speed has no value if he cant get on n hes a 2b not an of so his defense in left wont be good n y do tigers wanna platoon dirkshe hit 322 n 274 off lefties whats wrong with 274 no matter who platoon in left bet they dont hit 274 kobernus hit like 224 n wont drive nobody in porcello hasnt been good since his rookie year giving up tons of hits per innings pitched high era he cant strike out anybody has to pitch to contact n hes only got 1 pitch a sinker so he gets hit hard one other option is minors if they cant tradehim.using smylyas a starter gives rotation a lefty which it neds n n downs can be long man n 2nd lefty in pen myself id leave rondon in minors all year hes barely pitched above a ball trade porcello for a closer or bring back the guy nobody likes but me valverde who in his time with tigers led mlb in save pct 95 n led alin saves during his time as tiger what did hedo wrong nothing except have a jerk for a mgr that used him wrong n wants to platoon a 322 hitter in dirks id like valverde back leafve rondon in minors that opens 2bullpen spots if smyly starts downs gets one thats 2 leftiesother optionporcello as long man of marte who having good spring n made team outta spring last year. if kobernus is on bencgh as i stated earlier hes nothing santiago another nothing cant hit 206 last year i dont care if he signed this year cut him worth can play 3rd santiago cant n kelly under 200 battingavg i dont ever want him on my team what good is it if he can plsay all over if he cant help by hitting with kobernus,santiago,n kelly on bench be weakest best in mlb u can pitch these guys underhand theres no reason in the world dirks should get platooned leyland loves non hit guys inge,santiago,kelly n others n rather play them then guyslike dirks with his 322 avg n can get extrabase hits n drive guys in leyland wouldnt manage my team n kelly,kobernusn santiago wouldnt be on my team n neither would porcello with high era high hitsper innings pitched

There not platooning andy dirks there just looking for someone to back him up. Theres a difference. You gotta remember dirks hasnt played over 100 games in a season yet so u cant expect him to go out and play 160 games. Someone has to take at least a third of that time. I agree totally that dirks is awesome and fits in perfect on this team but we gotta be rational here. I think he was only in the 80s the past 2 seasons in games played so id say 100 games played would be a fair number.

he hits about as well as berry and berry stole plenty of bases in 2012

There is just so many things wrong with jumpys comment that i cant even take the time to explain it cuz it would take forever and i dont have that kinda time. Lets just be thankful you dont work in baseball. Oh and last time i checked the tigers won the al central, won a pennant, and made it to the world series….twice in the past 6 years with the same manager and gm that you speak so poorly of so they must be doing something right.

Nicely said…………………………..Jason.

Funny in a nasty sorta way…Still made me chuckle.

Actually, I am laughing so hard that tears are flowing.

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I will take a contrarian position: Smyly ,5th. Porcello, the bullpen.

For the first week: Verlander, Sanchez, Scherzer, Fister, Verlander. Maximize your Ace and use him against the Yankees. Who pitch on friday will be a good hint about the order, both Sanchez and Scherzer are on turn

Very good article Jason. Well done. Now just to think outside the box. Is it possible we should start the season with a three man bench and eight men in the bullpen?? I know I am in the minority on this one but isn’t the bullpen our main concern?? If management really likes Kobernus, they just would have to get a trade done.

I think Jason’s assesment is pretty much what fans will be seeing on opening day. Too bad, but I think the clock is ticking on guys like Below and Crosby. I like both, but neither has been able to take their game to that next level. I’d like to see Smyly in long relief, but there is a case for him being the ace in Toledo.

http://minoringinbaseball.com/

I agree on Below, and he has never been a top prospect. His contributions were a pleasant surprise but I think MLB hitters have adjusted to him. Crosby has a longer leash, only a couple years removed from surgery, throws hard, left handed. Crosby could turn into a back of the rotation starter. Below is a long reliever at best.

sure seems that porcello is a better long man tho: his opponents batting numbers clearly indicate he is good the first time through the order, not even that good the second time through and awful after that.

There are still questions about the Tigers rotation. As Jason recently mused, “What’s wrong with Fister?” Also, how many innings can we realistically expect out of Smyly if he slots as a starter?

good point. dan and jim have also talked about smyly’s inning count as being one reason to start him off as the long man.

Wow!! We only have ten more spring training games to play. That’s over 25% of our total ST games. Alas, we have more work to do. As always, we first need to get everyone healthy. We want no one on the DL on April 1st. Let’s start afresh with the final ten game stats. We still need to see Doug get command of that sinker and stretched out to six innings. Has V-Mart batted much against lefties?? No heroes in the bullpen. Most of those guys need to throw just three more times. Hey, Evan, how long before your first forecast for Minneapolis on 4/1??

VMart has 16abs vs lefties, 30abs vs righties
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and probably have a long range forecast by sunday for 4/1

Good deal.!!

Hey all. I have been quiet this offseason, but I have read everything. Alot of great thoughts to read for sure.
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I think the roster that Jason laid out is probably what will happen to start the year. My position on the RP situation has changed through the offseason. I just do not think DD will get fair market value back and that iswhy I am in the “hang on to him” camp. I am not worried about Fister. He will figure it out.
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This is an interestig year for Max. Something finally clicked for him in June last year but I have always worried about how many pitches he throws and his mechanics. Some might think me crazy, but maybe he is the one to trade at some point. Future injuries may be a concern.
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I dont think the bench has to have much pop. They need to be role players who can play the game right. They need some speed and they all have to play above average defense. The reason I dont think they need pop is because if the starting 9 is playing, you will never pinch hit for any of those 9. But when they have a day off, they will be available on the bench. Pop on the bench is overrated when you have a solid starting 9 and are not platooning. Just one man’s opinion.
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This has been a long spring training and it feels like it. The WBC is the cause of that. My thoughts on the WBC is that this is the wrong time of year. If they really want to get traction on this they need to do this the same way hockey does the Olympics. Shut down at the AS break every 4 years for 10 days and have the best players playing and pitchers who are stretched out. I would be more inclined to watch that. That is the only way it will be taken seriously. But with all the money invested in players, I doubt that will happen for fear of injuries.
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There is alot of buzz here in Toronto for the Jays. Hasn’t been that way here in 20 years. It would be nice to see the Tigers and Jays good at the same time again. I was 16 in 1987 and those last 10 days were great.
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11 more sleeps and we start all over again.
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Go Tigers!!!!!
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— Bob (in Toronto)

I am not impressed with our projected bench group.Only Kobernus has speed, and the jury is out as to whether he will hit enough to use it. There are no gold glove contenders in the bunch to compensate for their weak bats like the Angels had in Bourjos last season. Dirks does not play a critical defensive position but will probably give up at least 200 ABs due to his propensity for injuries and his likely semi-platoon status. Hitting matchups and interleague play mean pinch- hitters will be necessary.If V-Mart catches against NL teams as he desires, is the Avila of 2012 the pinch-hitting answer? Kelly’s .186 BA and 1 HR of last year doesn’t inspire me either. And Fister? FanGraphs posted an article last season demonstrating his elite performance when he hits the low 90s. He’s not even close to that speed presently and if he doesn’t “figure it out” I won’t be the only Tigers fan panicking. .

If they were a gold glove contender, they would not be on the bench. Don Kelly can play many positions well (defensively) and he is a better hitter than he showed last year. Also, good poing on 2E. The bench guys will not play often, so you need someone that can pinch hit and pinch run, which is why Kobernus/Berry and Worth/Kelly will get the 2 open spots.
2E will get a chance to put up Brad Eldred numbers in Toledo.

I feel exactly the same way. Well besides the whole toronto thing. Dont really care for them. Lol. No offense. Very well said.

No offense taken. I am not a Jays fan. I just live here. But it is nice to see baseball back on the radar here.
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— Bob

As I noted, the Angels had Bourjos on the bench and he is definitely a Gold Glove candidate. Moreover, their bench outfielder now is Wells and he is a former Gold Glove winner.So that position is not accurate. Furthermore, the bench guys will play often given the Dirks situation. There will be at least 200 ABs there alone.

And if Kelly were a good hitter he would not have been released last year.

Why do I keep thinking that if Mike Trout were on the Tigers he would be down in the minors while they bring in a formerly terrific but now aging player (Hunter)? Hell Al Kaline would be in his mid-20s before DD brought him up. The infield is good hit no field/range. Peralta is mediocre at SS as a hitter, on defense he is poor with no range. Infante is not much better. Cabrerra has little range at 3rd. The smartest player in the organization is Don Kelly with an option to get the hell out of Tiger town.

I think your negativity, with a smidgin of truth, is biased and unbalanced. Hopefully that is not because of your seeming Texas association or a lack of baseball intelligence.

Richard you obviously are misguided with the belief that you are intelligent and know baseball somewhat like DDl. Good luck with that.

Nasty retort. I did not question your mental ability as you did mine, just your baseball intellect given the nature of your comments. So, take your head and stick it up your dumb Texas ass.

Okay, I think you are crazy and a jackass to boot.

SO the word is that the Cards are calling for Porcello. Any way a deal might bring Allen Craig (who hits lefties and hits them HARD, under contract until 17 and 25 y.o.) here? other pieces like a spot starter (joe kelly?) maybe too….

because you might be able to stick him at 2B next year too….

he’s 28 not 25 tho. my b. debuted at 25.

Looking at the schedule. We play in NL parks 14 times. 6 of those in a row in one trip during May. 6 of them after August 22.
They could conceivably use temporary callups (bullpen, pinch hitters) for the 6-game trip in May, and they’d have September callups by the season ending series in Miami. If they wanted to play it that way.
There are 7 games in Houston and Miami, 3 in NY, 2 in Pittsburgh, and 2 in Washington.
If I’ve read it correctly, that is.

Houston is in the AL.

Ten games in NL parks.

Thank you sir. I will become accustomed to Houston in the AL along about 2018.

The Braves are still in Milwaukee, aren’t they?

The Padres declined to take Porcello for Huston Street or Luke Gregerson, a Tigers source told Bowden.

I would hope it was the other way around. DD offering up Porcello for only one of those guys dos not make sense to me.

the way i understood it was DD was offering porcello for only one, but either, of them.

Rosenthal and Morosi reported that the Tigers are talking about re-acquiring Wells to fill out the outfield. Now, that would be a sensible bench addition. Kelly and Kobernus do not make sense given the Dirks situation.

wells in 2012: .228 last year in 300+ PAs…..

He was your idea to begin with. Although Wells does not hit for average he has some pop and can play solid defense. I know in ST he had a couple of HRs and 12 RBIs in limited playing time, the last time I looked. And….228, as bad as it is, is slill 42 points higher than Kelly hit.

In fact, over his career in 593 ABs, about a regular season’s worth, Wells has 25 HRs and 80 RBIs. Not too shabby.

oh no don’t get me wrong i want him as that RHB OF backup – but his worth is probably low right now so i don’t know who we’ve have to give up certainly not porcello

Evan, Wells could come fairly cheap. He is not one of the starters for the Mariners and is competing with Jason Bay and Ibanez for a bench spot. There has even been talk of releasing him given the team’s OF abundance.

By UZR , Infante was the second best 2B in MLB. He is a great fielder. He lost one step in Detroit. But still, great.
Miller played in MLB, 20 days after being signed.
Porcello was with the Tigers with 19 years.
Verlander, Zumaya, Granderson were with the team as rookies and were in the big games.
Avisail was called up from AA and went to the WS
Rondon was named closer coming from AA

Talk, talk, talk. Huston Street would have made a nice addition, although I haven’t looked at his numbers recently. There is no way in you know what I’d give Ricky up except for a gold-standard type of player or players. Good starters don’t come along every day.

I agree with the entire roster, barring a trade.
The bench is not formidable hitting wise, or fielding wise. I think that’s who Leyland will put on the team, but I’d rather have Worth than Santiago, Kelly, or Kobernus. Just my take.

I’m good with anything…….

I anybody watching this game?

Well Justin is sucking it up again today! And the hitters look disinterested again.

2 on, no outs. Let’s get goin, Tigers!

Ankiel sure has a strong arm.

JV only 36P with 4SO thru 5IP.
Oh, and 3HR’s…

I watched Inge take an at-bat last night for the Pirates. He got a hit, but he doesn’t look comfortable to me. Read that Grandy is sort of mentoring Brennan to the culture of the NY Yankees. At least BB knows someone on the team and Curtis is a good friend to have. Geez, I still miss him.

My god, light a candle for the bullpen. This team still needs alot of work.

Bruce Rondon is pitching.

Well, all the Tigers need is 5 runs to tie the game.

The team looks bored and I don’t blame them. This is a crazy long spring training.

Bored? Really? With roster spots and impression opinions on the line? And with the season set to go? I gotta think about that.

There are only a couple of roster spots on the line. The regulars are bored and it happens every spring, to coin a movie phrase. They’ll get more interested next week as opening day draws nearer. Right now is the dead time of spring training. Absolutely normal occurrence.

I put very liitle stock in ST performances (team or player). Just avoid the serious injury and get your work in. Cases in point:

1. 1984 Tigers … terrible spring record .. we know what happened
2. 2012 Jays … awesome spring record .. 4th place finish
3 2011 Jhonny Peralta … no RBIs all spring .. gets the first Tiger RBI in the regular season and has a great year.
4. Ryan Raburn … almost every ST

Rich is right. This ST is too long. The wait is almost over. When I hear the “squeak-squeak” of March Madness tehn I know we are almost there.
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— Bob

Rich and Bob, you made good points and things are likely the way you depicted them. I just recall my college and high school years playing football, soccer and baseball. From personal experience, when roster cuts loomed, every day seemed like a dogfight. If a regular, then you had to watch for someone taking you out to get your spot. If on the bubble, then you were constantly looking to seize the opportunity.

Valid points, Richard. But the big difference between college/high school and the pros is $$$$$. $$$$ will secure a roster spot for most established players regardless of how bad a spring they have. It is the nature of the beast.
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— Bob

Read Adler from San Diego this morning. He is a journalist and radio figure. None too happy about the Padres failure to unload the “oft injured” Street and his salary for Porcello.

Have a hard time believing we would offer Porcello for Street straight up. Bet we also asked for something else. Sounds like a rumor SD wanted to circulate.
Anyone have thoughts on the new consideration for the BP? Alvarez? Know nothing about him.
Leyland sounded disappointed in ABQ, sounds like he is struggling.

i was just wondering where Lowe got ‘alvarez’ from don’t think i saw an alvarez last night. And yea, lots of chatter (e.g. j schmehl) about abq’s spot being ‘not a lock’ and even villareals spot in question

New Mexico is definitely lead dog in our manager’s doghouse as he has had two straight bad outings.

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