Sunday’s lineups: Cabrera, VMart both batting third

The Tigers’ final set of split-squad games Sunday will also mark their first games with Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez. Both will make their Spring Training debuts after spending most of camp rehabbing from their respective offseason surgeries.

Cabrera will bat third as the designated hitter for the Tigers’ home game against the Nationals at Joker Marchant Stadium. Martinez will be the DH in the Tigers’ road tilt against the Braves at Disney World, also batting third.

Both are expected to get three plate appearances, manager Brad Ausmus said Sunday morning. They’ll be off on Monday, the Tigers’ only scheduled off-day of the Grapefruit League schedule.

From there, the Tigers will have to find at-bats on both sides of camp for a few days until Cabrera is cleared to play first base, though Cabrera said Saturday he’d like to play first base to keep his ankle loose. One of them will then play Tuesday night against the Yankees in Tampa, while the other will get at-bats in a minor-league game.

One way or another, they’ll have close to two weeks of at-bats to get ready for regular season pitching before the Tigers open the season April 6 against the Twins at Comerica Park. It would be fewer at-bats than they’re used to in a typical camp, but should be enough to get their timing down at the plate as long as they feel healthy.

“It’s good that they’re able to partake in the games,” Ausmus said Saturday, “but this does not mean that come April 6 they’ll be ready.”

Even so, their return to Spring Training allows Ausmus to tinker with batting orders. Catcher Alex Avila, for instance, will bat in front of Cabrera for the first time Sunday, following through on an idea Ausmus has been considering with batting Avila second.

“I’m sure I’ll see a lot of curveballs,” Avila deadpanned Sunday morning.

Here are the lineups for the Tigers’ split-squad games Sunday:

1. Rajai Davis, CF
2. Alex Avila, C
3. Miguel Cabrera, DH
4. J.D. Martinez, RF
5. Yoenis Cespedes, LF
6. Nick Castellanos, 3B
7. Jordan Lennerton, 1B
8. Hernan Perez, SS
9. Josh Wilson, 2B
P: Justin Verlander, Joe Nathan, Joba Chamberlain, Joakim Soria, Blaine Hardy

1. Michael Taylor, CF
2. Derrick Robinson, RF
3. Dan Uggla, 2B
4. Mike Carp, 1B
5. Tyler Moore, LF
6. Ian Stewart, 3B
7. Sandy Leon, C
8. Emmanuel Burriss, SS
9. A.J. Cole, P

1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
2. Jose Iglesias, SS
3. Victor Martinez, DH
4. Tyler Collins, LF
5. James McCann, C
6. Aaron Westlake, 1B
7. Jefry Marte, 3B
8. Andrew Romine, RF
9. Anthony Gose, CF
P: Kyle Lobstein, Al Alburquerque, Buck Farmer, Alberto Cabrera, Bruce Rondon

1. Eury Perez, RF
2. Alberto Callaspo, 3B
3. Kelly Johnson, 1B
4. Jonny Gomes, LF
5. A.J. Pierzynski, C
6. Todd Cunningham, CF
7. Pedro Ciriaco, SS
8. Phil Gosselin, 2B
9. Shelby Miller, P


I’ll just go on record here by saying that, once the season starts, hitting Avila second is a less than bright idea.

“Alex Avila, who authors say took Detroit from positive to negative territory singlehandedly by going from first in third just twice in 23 chances and didn’t score from first on a double six times. That last tidbit, by the way, is interesting to note if Avila bats second this season in front of Miguel Cabrera, who led the AL with 52 doubles last year.”

Sounds perfectly logical to me.

Sure hope your are wrong about Romine. perez should have the job and Romine should become a footnote in Tiger history.
We don’t need a punchless bench (and don’t forget that Collins can run too). Too much like carrying Santiago and Worth a few years ago.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s