Leyland to manage Team USA in World Baseball Classi

In case you missed it, Jim Leyland is returning to managing one more time, albeit for country rather than for a big-league team. USA Baseball named him Friday as the manager for Team USA in next spring’s World Baseball Classic.

From Jon Morosi’s story currently live on MLB.com:

“I’ll definitely be ready,” Leyland told MLB.com during a telephone interview. “I’m never going to manage again after this. I didn’t think I’d manage this, either. But when I was asked, I could not turn this down. Not from an ego standpoint, but it’s the honor of being asked to manage for your country.

“This is probably going to take me a little time, to start thinking about game situations, to sharpen up again. Contrary to what a lot of people think, I don’t try to manage the game anymore. I just watch the Tigers, watch the game, watch the players. I don’t think too much about the strategy. That’s not my business anymore, not my job anymore.

“I’m not going to be a manager anymore, but this is a special thing that came up. I agreed to it right away. I’m very honored.”

He’s the second Tigers official in as many months named to a managerial post for the World Baseball Classic. Tigers first-base coach Omar Vizquel will manage for his native Venezuela.

Though Leyland is 71, age shouldn’t be a factor in what is a relatively short tournament, far different from the daily grind of the Major League season. Joe Torre managed the U.S. team three years ago at age 72.

Nor should Leyland have any problem connecting with superstars, considering the level of respect for him in the game. More interesting to follow will be how he handles playing time. He was lukewarm about this event when it first started because of the timing, taking players away from camps for much of Spring Training and ramping up their playing time more aggressively than if they were in their regular camp. It’ll also be interesting if Leyland takes a utility player or two (no, not Ryan Raburn) to provide some late-game versatility.

In any case, it’s a great honor for him, and it’ll be good to see him managing one more time in search of a title. The Americans have yet to make it to the championship game.

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VerHagen, highest BA against and has allowed all his IR to score.By the numbers, he is the weakest link

Dan, I posted a reply to you about VerHagen. I agree with your takes, but I also know the Fantasy people will take umbrage.

Minus the BB, the expected Pelfrey. GB and defense to cover him

This could be another long night with Pelfrey. I continue to hope he does well, but he looks like a bust so far. Still, at this point, I think he deserves more chances given how much $ the Tigers gambled on him. Personally, I would have gambled on Feliz for much less $, as I have repeatedly said.

Pelfrey’s facial expressions match his pitching. He really looks out of his leauge.

Tigers got nothing ….Wings got nothing

Pelfrey did his part. The offense is facing the Cy Young winner where he won the Award

We had a few Fantasy commenters who supported the Pelfrey deal. I never got the logic, but was criticized for my position. Nonetheless, I hope i am wrong for the sake of the Tigers.

I don’t see how any reasonable person could consider 5 BB and 6 hits in 6 innings to be a successful outing by Pelfrey..

Maybe because he only gave up 1 run? Runs are the only thing that really matter.

C’mon. No way that was a QS except for Fantasy people. The guy was lucky. Tonight was the night he should have gone to the Casino.

Farmer with another solid outing in a close game

A little bummed out over this one. He finally got the ground balls, but our offense went MIA.

One can only dream of the day that Upton; Miggy and Victor all start mashing the ball.

“The Tigers have optioned Buck Farmer to Triple-A Toledo and will activate Alex Wilson from the disabled list tomorrow, Brad Ausmus said.”

With Farmer going down, does this mean he will be stretched into a starter?

I just read Mr. Beck’s article on the move. The plan, in fact, is to turn Farmer back into a starter. Another factor is Farmer threw 2 innings and has only limited availability in the immediate future. At least the move seems to now make some sense. Otherwise, I figured Kensing would be on the move.

Regarding Pelfrey and to be fair, he did finish with 2-3 solid innings. There is some hope for him, I just remain very uncomfortable with him at this point.

Pelfrey pitched good enough to give team a winning chance this time. if he can do that 3 out of 5 times he takes the mound, he’ll have met my expectations as an end of the rotation guy

I just read an article on the Tigers website which is pretty much how I tried to earlier represent some of my feelings about Pelfrey’s performance. It is entitled “Shaky early, Pelfrey finishes strong.” Some excerpts: “Pelfrey bounced back from an opening 9 outs that saw him put on 10 baserunners – including a career-high-tying 6 walks – and still allow just a lone run”…”The veteran righty was all over the place, both mentally and with his command”…But suddenly from the 4th inning on, Pelfrey’s fastball found its mark and his split-finger offering established itself to keep hitters guessing”…And Pelfrey quipped after the game,”The 5th and 6th were probably my best innings. Not hard to beat the first 4, though.”

Potentially a “deal breaker” as to winning the division:
Upton Miggy and Victor are hitting .263 collectively with 4 homers and 11 RBIs.
This is dreadful especially when you consider Victor (missing 4 starts) has more RBIs than Upton AND Miggy to this point.
This is an area of the lineup that has to be ferocious.

Verlander sucks…I guess he’s not fixed

Our Ace doesn’t look like one yet this season. I hope this is just a glitch.

33 YO and 35 thousand pitches 2005 can do that.

No excuses, he is declining and it seems to be going down faster than expected.

I’m tired of his act…..he or someone always makes an excuse for him. He needs to do his job or make way for someone who can

Good thing Castellanos got himself thrown out at 3rd it woulda been another run

Is Upton ever going to take advantage of the fastballs he gets batting ahead of Miggy?
He has been very disappointing to me
Also seems to play with very little energy or excitement

I don’t see the “new” JV being successfully reinvented until he can command the lower part of the strike zone
I disagree with Rod who , like JV himself, thinks he can live above the belt

I will say I think he’s getting squeezed a bit…..

Excuses for JV? I didn’t read any.

Was Rod acting like a homer again? I’m watching the Houston feed.

As far as Nick’s out at third, I was unhappy with the result but not the gamble. It was neither the first nor third out. Plus the ball got caught in the pad and it took a perfect relay to nab him. If there was a mistake, it was probably by Rasmus. He should have thrown up his hands and kept Nick at second.

JV has historically had some pretty rocky Aprils. I hope that’s all we are seeing. Meanwhile, JV seems to be settling in with 7 Ks thru 4 innings.

So what was Upton doing on Miggy’s ball? That was a ball he should have scored on. .

Guess all the baserunning practice in spring training didn’t work out…2 missed runs alone tonights

Tigers base running is poor . Something they need to work on and soon .

Well, he has survived until the end of the 5th

Cool….Salty

And now, he is the winning pitcher

Speed is useless when unable to go on base or to run properly

Altuve with a web gem. That was beautiful.

Gose cost himself a base hit there.

Yep, but I figured that ball was going into CF just like he did. So, he started to round and then Altuve turned into Superman. Altuve also made a dynamite tag on Iggy. No way that high throw should have turned into a close play. Altuve is a special player in my opinion.

Nick has actually made 3 nice defensive plays this game. Maybe he is going to be better with the glove than I thought. Omar seems to think that can be the case. I thought he was misquoted when i first read his remark/opinion.

A QS by JV. I guess we buried him before he was dead.

The BP finished very well and K-Rod gave us a clean 9th. Nice.

JV earns some money tonight; actually did pretty well after the first. Still, way too may pitchers per at bat in his first three starts. It’s time for him to put up or shut up if he wants to be the leader of this pitching staff. Good win tonight, in that the team finally tried to adjust to the Mcune (SP) curve ball. Miggy showed some signs of coming alive. Nick continues to display good coverage of the plate, and his plate discipline has definitely taken a step forward, Agree with Darline that his Defense still might surprise us:
1. Salty strikes for a third time.
2. The infield is humming along really well with DP’s.
3. 7-8-9 was sort of Kansas Cityish; All business. Did I tell you how impressed I am with Justin Wilson?
Kudos to Nick, Salty, Victor, and Iggy. Right now, Gose really needs to continue slapping the ball to left field. J-UP, well, J-UP is J-UP. Get ready for the UP Streak.
Anabal goes for the series clinch tomorrow! Go Tigers!

What an incredible blessing to see a bullpen pitch three innings and face the minimum nine. I actually settled into the beginning of the 7th inning very confident our BP could hold the lead. Can’t remember the last time I could have said that!!

Kinsler 4, Upton 7, Cabrera 3, V. Martinez DH, J. Martinez 9, Castellanos 5, Saltalamacchia 2, Gose 8, Iglesias 6. Sanchez P

First inning blues…..again.

JV is a pitcher needing to adjust to his new physical reality. His reliance on his fastball over the years has been a double edged sword and his diminished velocity will necessitate diminished reliance upon it as well.
Say what you will about JV he is still a bulldog, a fierce competitor and a guy who does not quit. I was impressed with the way he handled himself yesterday.

Looks like we might be seein Alex today for 2-3 innings!!

Gopher homerunball Sanchez is visiting today….

Read an article about Ausmus getting impatient with the base-running. He should be getting impatient with his hitters ignoring the radical shifts and hitting into the teeth of the shift.
I can tell you I am really impatient with Upton and getting very concerned with being so non-productive. We keep hearing about his hot streaks.
Would they dare consider dropping him in the lineup?
Give Nick a chance to hit in front of the Big Man!

Looks like a Sunday loss. Anibal not effective. No hitting support.

The Big man hasn’t been all that productive either…….but your point is well taken and upton has been disappointing so far. Miggy has disappointed me so far too.

They don’t actually look very interested today…lax play in the field…lax ab’s……pitching suspect. Truly disappointed

Upton will hit. He has always been a hitting roller coaster and I have braced myself to be patient and wait for his eventual .800 OPS What is disturbing to me about Upton is his defense. Teams didn’t run on Cespedes like they do on him. It’s too early to call him Delmon Upton, but his defensive play is definitely trending in that direction..

By the time Miggy steps into the batters’ box (after watching Upton suck), he is too depressed to hit.

Aweful AB’s byou Miggy and Victor is the 8th…truly pathetic. Is Miggy hurt or just hitting like well…Upton

Pretty much the way I see it also. Miggy and Vmart gotta step up at the plate.

Our pitch counts are horrible through the first 11 games. Seven innings seems like eternity for JV and Anabal; it’s always the one inning. Question could be asked, Where’s Miggy? I wish I knew. As I mentioned last week, J-UP is what you see; right now, it’s not very pretty. If Salty, keeps up this hitting(and he surely won’t), he will make it difficult to be taken out of the line up. Kinsler is one sly buzzard; I’m so glad we got him for Prince. Love to see him end his career with us. A True Grit guy:
1. The 11 pitch AB walk for Gose in the 7th.
2. Alex Wilson hasn’t missed a beat.
3. Ian gave us a chance to tie or win.
Kudos to Salty, Julio,, Ian, and the Pen. Enjoy your 33rd. birtday tomorrow Miggy, and come back Tuesday night as a man on a mission.

Best I can say is they didn’t lose any ground to KC or WSox. But now on to KC……..oh! oh!

It seems lately on the road we give the home team the lead in the 1st inning and never have enough juice to catch them or pull ahead and take momentum. See JV, Sanchez & Pelfrey starts and gopher balls early while running up their pitch counts and barely lasting 6 IP’s. Sure would be nice to see consistent production from UP, Migs and the Martinez boys. Whopping 2 for 16 today! Losing 2 out of 3 to the better teams is not a playoff contender. KC will be no easy series either.

Fans wanted the Tigers to be like KC. They are, few IP by starters and a solid ( despite the numbers), deep BP.
Tigers starters 5.6 IP/GS .16th on MLB
KC 5.5 IP /GS
3rd in QS (AL)
.500 playing Bucs, Houston and Royals will be good enough.
The other team, a good one, came to play too.
The E by Miguel? that play has been routine for him for years, it happens.
Upton showed he cares

Yeah, but cares about what?
I have a feeling it more about himself than it is the team.
But I do agree, at least we saw some kind of emotion.
I sure would like to see Miggy decide he should just go for the fence. He would still hit .300 and he could match just about anybody for homers if he did.

I watched the Houston feed from the night before and Upton was pretty irritated in an at bat then. He was reportedly chirping at Hinch. I wonder if there’s not some bad blood there and it carried over throuh the series. Hinch managed him a few years back when they were both with Arizona

Chase Utley is a disgrace for baseball. He should be suspended. He went after the Giant player covering 2B just like he did with Tejada.
If Shark hits him in the next AB , nobody could say a word against him

I think Rasmus had another incident this year too.
Why do the Tigers not insist on Gose utilizing his speed? All the crap about bunting more especially against lefties. He gets on and they never even bother to hit & run or straight steal.
They (and he) are not maximizing his attributes.

Besides Tejada and Kang being publicized victims of the takeout slide, Rasmus was involved in a recent incident against the Brewers which resulted in a DP that was called by the umps despite an appeal by the Astros. Forsythe of the Rays was also taken out recently by Bautista.in a DP called by the umps, which ended the game. Gibbons was later quoted: “Maybe we’ll come out and wear dresses tomorrow. Maybe that’s what everybody’s looking for.” And, Utley was ultimately rewarded with a $7M contract for his slide to serve as a 37 YO utility player for the Dodgers. My point is that not everyone is on the same page on this issue. Yet, something needs to be done.

Hinch’s take on the Rasmus slide: “It was interpreted right, but the rule needs clarification because I think its wrong.”

Moya 6 Ks this season; Upton 20.

Anybody hear anything re Maybin getting hit in the wrist again? I presume no news on that is good news.

VerHagen:
WHIP 2.000 13.5 Hits / 9 BB /9 4.5 SO/9 ?just 1.5
BA .375 .429 .500 .929
IR 4/5 80 %

That is rather ugly. That being said, I think Verhagen has potential. Live arm and ground ball rate will keep him around until he figures other things out.

VerHagen has had 7 appearances. He has a 0.00 ERA with a WHIP close to 1.00 and gave up only a total of 4 hits in 6 of them. His only clunker was against the Pirates. VerHagen’s body of work has been excellent overall.

Kensing DFA. Hardy is back

John Wagner from Toledo Blade tweeted that tests on Maybin negative, back playing soon. Machado back tonite after missing couple games due to hammy. Schierholtz day to day with hammy.

THX

MLBTR posted that the Tigers are indeed interested in Lohse as a depth option. Adams noted Pelfrey’s struggles and the injury histories of Sanchez and JV make him a viable candidate to sign with the Tigers. That would most likely be a MiLB deal.

Lohse rumor was struck down when it first popped up in spring training. If it was going to happen, it would’ve been then. The more development Fulmer, Boyd and Norris get, the less fit there is for an aging pitcher like Lohse.

Frankly, I get your point about the kids. But, I”m curious where MLBTR and Adams get info of this nature, which posted yesterday in the late afternoon? And then Iott ended up disputing it later. Now, you have disputed it as well.

It almost seems like Heyman floated an idea based upon who knows what and then others just ran with it. It makes me wonder who and what to believe.

Simon, ESPN:
“Cespedes has struck out 18 times in 46 at-bats, a 39 percent strikeout rate”

Upton:39.2

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