Dombrowski discusses looming Peralta decision

Dave Dombrowski’s announcement that Jhonny Peralta is rejoining the team to work out and take batting practice before the gates open went over relatively easy. He budgeted 15 minutes to talk with the team about the decision, but needed only a few. He spent more time talking with reporters about the limited reaction from the players.

“Quiet, not much said,” Dombrowski said of the reaction. “They paid attention. They were intent. And I think they’re interested, but really it’s just pretty much they listened.”

The decision looming over all of this, the one whether to put Peralta back on the active roster for the end of the regular season and the postseason, is going to take a lot longer to decide. It’s going to draw much more scrutiny all around, let alone within the clubhouse.

As Dombrowski talked about this first step, he was unusually open talking about the decision process that will go into the last step. He could’ve said that was a discussion for another time. He did not.

“Really, you are under some obligation to try to give him the opportunity to come back, because it’s a negotiated settlement — a 50-day suspension — that the commissioner’s office and the players’ association agreed upon,” Dombrowski said. “Are you told that you have to? No, but you’re also told that there’s some obligation. I think really where we fall at this time is that, too.

“You pay the punishment, you pay the price, which he has, then you sit back. We can see how he is. How does he react? Can he swing the bat? How is he moving around? Do we think he gives us a chance to be better at some point? We’re trying to win a championship. That factors into there, too. All those are considerations.”

At one point early on, Dombrowski used the term “baseball decision” to describe the choice whether to activate him. Those two words, as much as anything, might set up the process.

He’s a now-deposed shortstop with a run production kind of bat, and he’ll have a very limited amount of activity for the Tigers to evaluate. It not only will be limited time, but limited activity, basically just pregame workout and instructional league games.

The good news about those games is that they can set him up for as many at-bats as he wants in a day. The bad news is the level of competition.

The other point he made is who factors into the decision.

“It’s my decision, really,” he said. “Not that I may not ask a player or two different opinions and discuss it with staff, but it really ends up being my decision, mine and Mr. Ilitch’s.

“It’s one of those things I see both angles. I see the angle where it’s really talking about the same stuff we did before. People feel like you’ve been betrayed, you’ve been hurt, you’ve been all those things. And then you’ve also got the other end of it where you’ve paid your price, you’ve paid your dues. I’m really not the judge and jury beyond the 50-game suspension. That’s really been determined by the players association and the commissioner’s office. And I think more and more players fall upon that. Now that’s not to say that they may not want more severe punishment in the future, but for now that’s really what’s been decided, and it’s up to us to analyze.

“We could end up playing against somebody in the postseason that has somebody that’s been suspended and ends up playing against us. I think you have to weigh what you think is best for your club at the time.”

It’s no longer a question whether Peralta is good enough to get his old job back at shortstop. As Dombrowski made clear, the Tigers have their everyday shortstop now in Jose Iglesias. So while the Tigers try to get Peralta back into baseball shape and judge his readiness, they also have to judge his utility.

His Major League experience is at shortstop at third. Dombrowski laid open the possibility that he could take ground balls at second in batting practice, but wasn’t sure about that. He mentioned fly balls, but didn’t mention outfield along with that.

“I guess I could envision anything,” Dombrowski said. “I don’t really have a specific plan, really, beyond what I’ve described here.”

21 Comments

If I’m not mistaken, they can change the roster for each round of playoffs?

I think your right……I’m trying to remember what happened when Sean Casey was hurt in ’06?

They activated Alex Gomez for the LCS if I recall. He drove in 4 runs in Game 2, I think, including a home run. That was the game Todd Jones left them loaded in the 9th when Frank Thomas send Granderson to the warning track for the final out.
.
– Bob

Correct. Each round, the 25-man roster is set the morning of Game 1.

I see Jhonny as insurance. The entire left side of the infield has been hobbled by injuries this season.

management is playing this one the right way [re: peralta]

As far as the moral side of this goes, if Peralta had failed a drug test or something, I’d feel differently. That goes for Nelson Cruz and all the others caught up in this investigation. Unfortunately, this entire business had a bad smell to it from all sides and it’s too difficult to draw a moral judgement. I’ll just agree with what Dave said about it and move on. Jhonny is still a Tiger until he signs elsewhere.

Quintana has reverse splits this year (he’s a lefty, no?) – so with Torii back I don’t see 2E or Nick getting the start over Dirks in the OF. I’d stick with Alex too for that matter since he’s hitting well.

Good catch. Dirks has never faced him. Tuiasosopo homered off him earlier this year. Austin Jackson is 2-for-10 against him.

well then i wonder will the skip go with pitcher splits or past history… Hey maybe you give AJ a blow then if he wants 2E to get in the game. But then, can the Youngster (Torii) still play CF? Or does Donellus Kelly get the call over 2E and play CF?

Great win last night along with a loss by Cleveland. Miggy looks close, those shots to right field needed just a bit more on them and they were homeruns. He seems to thrive on playing so his timing might just be affected and close to returning. Great hitting by Fielder and Alex – so nice to see that for both of them. Hard to believe that Max does not yet have a complete game under his belt? Ricky did amazing last night, good for him. Kid has his ups and downs but seems his ups are more frequent now.

Rosenthal:
“#Tigers’ Tuiasosopo 8-for-44 (.182) with no EBH since 8/1. Castellanos a rookie with seven big-league ABs. But could Peralta handle LF?”

Still, Fister belongs to the postseason rotation and Porcello to the bullpen..
Fister-Porcello:
ERA: 3.77 vs 4.56
3.32 vs-4.46 since ASG
FIP: 3.31, vs 3.73 Both have suffered the bad defense but Fister has the resources to overcome it
FIP 3.23 vs 4.07 ,second half.
Fster has been consistent ,something Porcello has never been.20 QS vs 16.
He is the same that allowed 8 runs last week and usually cant get thru the order for the third time

fair enough fair enough. He has some MLB-level bullpen experience anyhow. What if it comes down to Fister vs Verlander, though?

It will never happen, Evan. Porcello will be in the pen for the postseason unless there is an injury to one of the other 4. JV will be starting Game 1 of the postseason. I would put a very hefty wager that JL makes that decision; rightly or wrongly.
.
– Bob

KC 5, CLE 2 in the top of the 8th.

KC wins 6-2. Good news or bad news???

Whenever the magic number shrinks, it is good news. If we can get our act together this weekend, we can crush KC’s hopes ourselves.
.
– Bob

We need to focus on beating the White Sox to win a series. Then it’s back home for ten games. Go Tigers!!!!

Just waiting for a big hit. We have to do better than this. Boston is rolling.

I’m shutting it off and going to bed. Listless.

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