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Saupold arrested following bar fight at Toledo

Warwick Saupold and two Pirates minor-leaguers were arrested early Sunday morning following an altercation outside a bar near Fifth Third Field in Toledo.

Saupold was charged with simple assault. He was booked at the Lucas County Jail and released on Sunday. He pitched for the Mud Hens on Monday at Indianapolis, tossing five scoreless innings.

Tigers vice president of player development Dave Littlefield told on Tuesday afternoon that the Tigers are aware of the arrest. At this point, the team considers it a private matter and will let the legal system take its course.

According to the police report, Saupold was with Triple-A Indianapolis players Gift Ngoepe and Dovydas Neverauskas outside The Bronze Boar in downtown Toledo when they got into an altercation with Andrey Gonarchuk. Two Toledo police officers stated in the report that they witnessed Saupold punch Gonarchuk in the face, after which they placed him into custody. Ngoepe and Neverauskas also got involved and were charged with assault and resisting arrest.

The 26-year-old Saupold, a native of Perth, Australia, pitched in six games for the Tigers this season over two separate big-league stints. first reported the arrests on Tuesday.

Tigers call up JaCoby Jones from Toledo

JaCoby Jones climbed the prospect rankings in the Tigers system as a combination center fielder and third baseman. With Cameron Maybin sidelined and Nick Castellanos on the disabled list, it appears the Tigers are going to give him a chance to do a little bit of both.

A day after Maybin re-injured his left thumb, the Tigers called up Jones from Triple-A Toledo on Tuesday, adding the versatile 24-year-old to the 40-man roster. He takes the place of Casey McGehee, was optioned to Toledo to make room.

The Tigers also swapped pitchers to add an extra reliever, recalling lefty Blaine Hardy from Toledo. Matt Boyd, Detroit’s starting pitcher in Monday’s win over the White Sox, was optioned to Toledo to make room, but the move is temporary. Major League rosters expand beyond the standard 25 on Thursday, allowing the Tigers to recall Boyd in time for his next start. McGehee, too, can return in a few days.

The more important move is the addition of Jones, one of the quiet gems of Detroit’s deadline deals last summer. Acquired from Pittsburgh for Joakim Soria last year, the former LSU infielder enjoyed a standout final month at Double-A Erie, followed by a strong campaign in the Arizona Fall League before being suspended by Major League Baseball for testing positive for a substance of abuse. He vaulted into the top 10 on’s Tigers prospect rankings.

After a strong Spring Training, Jones finished out his suspension, then picked up where he left off, batting .257 (95-for-369) with 20 doubles, seven triples, seven home runs and 43 RBIs between Toledo and Double-A Erie. He rebounded from a rough start with the Mud Hens to bat .269 (29-for-108) in August with seven doubles, a triple and seven RBIs.

With a high strikeout rate — including 97 over 79 games in Toledo — Jones could be an all-or-nothing hitter down the stretch as he tries to adjust to Major League pitching. With injuries taking their toll on the Tigers roster, however, management is willing to take a shot.

Jones has started 57 games in center at Toledo, and 18 at third base. He can provide a right-handed hitter to complement Tyler Collins in center and Erick Aybar at third.

Monday’s lineups: Tigers vs. White Sox

A change at the top of the Tigers batting order, where Cameron Maybin and Ian Kinsler swap spots in front of the run production middle of the lineup. Kinsler will bat second for the first time this season.

“Change his luck, maybe,” manager Brad Ausmus said. “He’s been barreling the ball up, sometimes hitting it right at people. There’s no mathematical formula behind [the swap].”

Meanwhile, at the other end, Erick Aybar starts in place of Jose Iglesias against James Shields, while Casey McGehee slides down to eighth in the order.

On the White Sox side, with Dioner Navarro now back in Toronto, Alex Avila gets the start behind the plate against lefty Matt Boyd. It’s Avila’s second start in three games since his return from the disabled list over the weekend.

Gameday | TV: Fox Sports Detroit, MLB.TV | Radio: 97.1 FM, MLB Gameday Audio

tigerroarlogoTIGERS (career numbers off Shields)

  1. Cameron Maybin, CF (6-for-17, triple, 2 walks)
  2. Ian Kinsler, 2B (17-for-62, 2 doubles, 5 HR, 4 walks, 4 K’s)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (24-for-63, 10 doubles, 3 HR, 6 walks, 11 K’s)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (15-for-51, 5 doubles, HR, 2 walks, 9 K’s)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (9-for-21, 3 doubles, HR, walk, 8 K’s)
  6. Justin Upton, LF (1-for-7, walk, K)
  7. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C (2-for-22, 3 walks, 6 K’s)
  8. Casey McGehee, 3B (0-for-1)
  9. Erick Aybar, SS (8-for-25, double, 2 HR, 4 K’s)

P: Matt Boyd

whitesoxsockWHITE SOX (career numbers vs. Boyd)

  1. Adam Eaton, CF (2-for-4, walk, K)
  2. Tim Anderson, SS (1-for-6, 2 K’s)
  3. Melky Cabrera, LF (2-for-5)
  4. Jose Abreu, 1B (2-for-5, HR)
  5. Todd Frazier, 3B (0-for-4)
  6. Justin Morneau, DH
  7. Avisail Garcia, RF (1-for-3, HR)
  8. Alex Avila, C
  9. Tyler Saladino, 2B (1-for-2, K)

P: James Shields

Sunday’s lineups: Tigers vs. Angels

Same lineup as Saturday for Tigers against Angels lefty Tyler Skaggs. The Tigers haven’t heard anything from Major League Baseball about Saturday’s ejections, and likely won’t until Monday, so Victor Martinez — who would seem likely to face a fine or suspension after throwing his helmet onto the field from the dugout — remains in the lineup.

Gameday | TV: Fox Sports Detroit, MLB.TV | Radio: 97.1 FM, MLB Gameday Audio

TIGERS (numbers against Skaggs)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (0-for-3, K)
  2. Cameron Maybin, CF (0-for-4)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (2-for-3, HR)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (1-for-3, K)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (1-for-2, double, K)
  6. Justin Upton, LF
  7. Casey McGehee, 3B
  8. James McCann, C
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS

P: Anibal Sanchez

ANGELS (career numbers off Sanchez)

  1. Kole Calhoun, RF (2-for-4, walk)
  2. Mike Trout, CF (3-for-11, 2 HR, walk, 4 K’s)
  3. Albert Pujols, DH (8-for-24, 2 doubles, HR, walk, 3 K’s)
  4. C.J. Cron, 1B (1-for-2, HR)
  5. Andrelton Simmons, SS (4-for-7, double, triple, K)
  6. Jefry Marte, 3B (2-for-2, HR)
  7. Nick Buss, LF
  8. Jett Bandy, C
  9. Kaleb Cowart, 2B

P: Tyler Skaggs

Saturday’s lineups: Tigers vs. Angels

For real this time: Jose Iglesias is off the disabled list and in the Tigers starting lineup at shortstop. He was in a 5-for-35 slump when he went on the DL a couple weeks ago, but he went 6-for-16 over his four-game rehab assignment. He has yet to face Brett Oberholtzer, who gets the start for the Angels tonight in place of Jhoulys Chacin. Former Tiger Jefry Marte gets the start at third base, his first game action since last Saturday.

Those mid-afternoon storms that rolled into the area washed out batting practice at Comerica Park, but they’re expected to head out of town by game time.

Note that tonight’s game is an FS1 broadcast. If the earlier game runs late, the Tigers game will begin on Fox Sports Detroit before moving over.

Gameday | TV: FS1, MLB.TV | Radio: 97.1 FM, MLB Gameday Audio

84tigerslogoTIGERS (career numbers vs. Oberholtzer)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (3-for-10, 2 doubles)
  2. Cameron Maybin, CF
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (2-for-6, HR, K)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (1-for-5, walk)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (0-for-6, 3 K’s)
  6. Justin Upton, LF
  7. Casey McGehee, 3B (0-for-0, walk)
  8. James McCann, C
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS

P: Michael Fulmer

halologoANGELS (numbers off Fulmer)

  1. Kole Calhoun, RF (0-for-2, walk)
  2. Mike Trout, CF (0-for-3, 2 K’s)
  3. Albert Pujols, DH (0-for-1, K)
  4. C.J. Cron, 1B (1-for-3)
  5. Andrelton Simmons, SS
  6. Jefry Marte, 3B (0-for-3, K)
  7. Nick Buss, LF
  8. Carlos Perez, C (0-for-2, walk)
  9. Kaleb Cowart, 2B

P: Brett Oberholtzer

Friday’s lineups: Tigers vs. Angels

Jose Iglesias is back with the Tigers, but not yet back from the disabled list. He’s getting the night off after his four-game minor-league rehab assignment, then will be activated from the 15-day DL for tomorrow’s game. Look for him to be in the lineup Saturday, but with no guarantees he’ll be the everyday shortstop down the stretch over Erick Aybar.

“Whoever plays better is going to play,” manager Brad Ausmus said. “Simple as that.”

Gameday | TV: Fox Sports Detroit, MLB.TV | Radio: 97.1 FM, MLB Gameday Audio

tigerpitcherlogoTIGERS (career numbers off Nolasco)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (9-for-26, 3 doubles, 2 K’s)
  2. Cameron Maybin, CF (5-for-9, 2 walks)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (5-for-18, double, 4 walks, 7 K’s)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (7-for-17, 2 doubles, 3 walks, 2 K’s)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (7-for-21, triple, walk, 3 K’s)
  6. Justin Upton, LF (9-for-22, HR, 2 walks, 6 K’s)
  7. Casey McGehee, 3B (1-for-8, 3 K’s)
  8. James McCann, C (0-for-2)
  9. Erick Aybar, SS (1-for-6, double, K)

P: Justin Verlander

angelscalilogoANGELS (career numbers vs. Verlander)

  1. Kole Calhoun, RF (0-for-10, walk, 4 K’s)
  2. Mike Trout, CF (1-for-12, HR, 2 walks, 4 K’s)
  3. Albert Pujols, DH (8-for-22, 3 doubles, HR, 6 walks, 5 K’s)
  4. C.J. Cron, 1B (3-for-9, double, K)
  5. Andrelton Simmons, SS
  6. Nick Buss, LF
  7. Jett Bandy, C
  8. Kaleb Cowart, 3B (0-for-2, walk, 2 K’s)
  9. Cliff Pennington, 2B (3-for-21, 2 walks, 7 K’s)

P: Ricky Nolasco


Thursday’s lineups: Tigers at Twins

Ian Kinsler returns to the lineup as Cameron Maybin gets a day off. Erick Aybar is also off. Tyler Collins starts in center, his first start since last Saturday, while Andrew Romine starts at short. Not that it makes a vast difference, but Twins rookie starter Jose Berrios has given up six of his seven home runs to right-handed hitters in nearly the same number of plate appearances, though both sides hit him for a high batting average.

On the Twins side, Joe Mauer is out of the lineup for a second consecutive game.

TIGERS (numbers off Berrios)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (1-for-1, HR)
  2. Tyler Collins, CF
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (0-for-0, walk)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (0-for-1)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (0-for-0, walk)
  6. Justin Upton, LF (0-for-1, K)
  7. Casey McGehee, 3B
  8. James McCann, C
  9. Andrew Romine, SS

P: Daniel Norris

TWINS (numbers vs. Norris)

  1. Brian Dozier, 2B (0-for-2, K)
  2. Jorge Polanco, SS
  3. Robbie Grossman, LF
  4. Trevor Plouffe, 1B (0-for-1)
  5. Miguel Sano, DH (0-for-1)
  6. Max Kepler, RF
  7. Eduardo Escobar, 3B (0-for-1)
  8. Juan Centeno, C
  9. Danny Santana, CF

P: Jose Berrios

Wednesday’s lineups: Tigers at Twins

Ian Kinsler gets a day off amidst a 1-for-29 slump over the last eight days, dropping his batting average from .290 to .275, and a 1-for-9 history against Twins starter Tyler Duffey. Andrew Romine gets the start at second base. Cameron Maybin, who moved from second to ninth in the batting order Tuesday to help monitor his swings and ease the pain on his sprained left thumb, will bat leadoff tonight after a stellar performance Tuesday.

Kinsler isn’t the only star player getting the night off. Joe Mauer is out of the lineup while riding a 1-for-16 skid. He’s batting .235 against left-handed pitching this season, 54 points below his career mark off southpaws. He’s also 0-for-5 in two career games against Tigers starter Matt Boyd.

Gameday | TV: Fox Sports Detroit, MLB.TV | Radio: 97.1 FM, MLB Gameday Audio

84tigerslogoTIGERS (career numbers against Duffey)

  1. Cameron Maybin, CF
  2. Erick Aybar, SS (0-for-3, walk, K)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (3-for-8, double, walk)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (4-for-9, 2 doubles, 2 K’s)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (3-for-8, double, walk, K)
  6. Justin Upton, LF (1-for-3, HR, K)
  7. Casey McGehee, 3B
  8. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C (0-for-3, 2 K’s)
  9. Andrew Romine, 2B (1-for-3, double)

P: Matt Boyd

twinsoldtimelogoTWINS (career numbers vs. Boyd)

  1. Brian Dozier, 2B (0-for-5, walk, 3 K’s)
  2. Robbie Grossman, LF (0-for-0, walk)
  3. Miguel Sano, DH (1-for-5, walk, 3 K’s)
  4. Trevor Plouffe, 1B (0-for-2, walk, K)
  5. Jorge Polanco, SS
  6. Eduardo Escobar, 3B (0-for-1)
  7. Max Kepler, RF (1-for-2, double)
  8. Kurt Suzuki, C (1-for-3, walk)
  9. Eddie Rosario, CF (1-for-4, triple, K)

P: Tyler Duffey

Tuesday’s lineups: Tigers at Twins

Cameron Maybin moves down to the ninth spot in the Tigers batting order today as Erick Aybar takes his 4-for-10 history against Kyle Gibson up to second, where he batted for much of last week before Maybin came back from the disabled list Sunday. Maybin said after his two-run single Sunday that his thumb still hurts, including when he swings, so batting lower could also be a way to conserve his swings.

Justin Upton hasn’t faced Gibson before, since Gibson hasn’t faced the Tigers since last year, but he’s 15-for-35 against Minnesota this season. J.D. Martinez has a very good history against Gibson, and he’s 30-for-68 in August. Gibson, for his part, threw a complete-game victory over Atlanta his last time out, allowing three runs on eight hits with three walks and six strikeouts.

Anibal Sanchez will try to build off the momentum of his no-hit bid last week against Kansas City. He has had quality starts in his last five meetings with Minnesota dating back to June 2014, including 10 strikeouts over six innings of three-run ball last month at Comerica Park. He’ll face a Twins lineup that scored six runs over three games against the Royals over the weekend, including an 0-for-12 series for Joe Mauer. Miguel Sano is hitless in his last 16 at-bats.

Gameday | TV: Fox Sports Detroit, MLB.TV | Radio: 97.1 FM, MLB Gameday Audio

tigerslogoTIGERS (career numbers vs. Gibson)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (9-for-21, double, HR, 3 walks, 2 K’s)
  2. Erick Aybar, SS (4-for-10)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (5-for-15, double, HR, 2 walks, 3 K’s)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (4-for-20, double, 3 walks)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (8-for-19, double, 2 HR, 2 walks, 5 K’s)
  6. Justin Upton, LF
  7. Casey McGehee, 3B
  8. James McCann, C (0-for-3, 2 K’s)
  9. Cameron Maybin, CF

P: Anibal Sanchez

twinslogoTWINS (career numbers off Sanchez)

  1. Brian Dozier, 2B (2-for-23, 2 walks, 6 K’s)
  2. Jorge Polanco, SS
  3. Joe Mauer, 1B (7-for-29, 2 walks, 6 K’s)
  4. Trevor Plouffe, 3B (4-for-21, HR, 2 walks, 5 K’s)
  5. Max Kepler, RF (0-for-2, walk, K)
  6. Miguel Sano, DH (1-for-3, double, 2 K’s)
  7. Eddie Rosario, CF (0-for-3, 3 K’s)
  8. Juan Centeno, C
  9. Danny Santana, LF (6-for-14, 4 K’s)

P: Kyle Gibson

The Fulmer innings conservation plan begins

Michael Fulmer made his Major League debut a little less than four months ago, on a Friday night in Minnesota. Had he stayed on turn in the Tigers rotation, he’d be on track to return to Minnesota to face the Twins on Thursday afternoon. Obviously, as we’ve chronicled for a while, that’s not happening.

With today’s off day, two starters — Anibal Sanchez and Matt Boyd — will get an extra day of rest before their start against the Twins. Daniel Norris and Justin Verlander move up a day and pitch Thursday and Friday against the Twins and Angels, respectively. The team will wait until Saturday, the day they need a fifth starter, to send Fulmer back to the mound against the Angels at Comerica Park.

It’s a way to buy Fulmer extra rest without actually pulling him out of the rotation or, as the Blue Jays are doing with Aaron Sanchez, optioning him to the minor leagues for a brief spell. And depending on how aggressively the Tigers want to push Fulmer back, it could save him two starts’ worth of innings by the end of the regular season compared to keeping him on turn the rest of the way.

Part of that difference depends on the next couple weeks and how the Tigers use their next off-day. It’s next Thursday, before the Tigers begin a big three-game series at Kansas City. It’s also five days after Fulmer faces the Angels on Saturday. If the Tigers want to use that off-day to push Fulmer back again, they could wait until Sept. 6, the following Tuesday, before pitching him again on nine days’ rest. If they used the next off-day to push him back once more, he would pitch again a week later, Sept. 13, against the Twins at home.

Go down the calendar, map out the off-days and how long the Tigers can wait before needing a fifth starter, and Fulmer could end up with just six starts the rest of the way, including two of the last three against Cleveland. If he were to average six innings a start, that would be 36 more innings to his current total of 141 between Detroit and Toledo, or 177 innings total for the season. That would be a 42 percent increase from his 124 2/3 innings pitched in the minor leagues last year.

If the Tigers kept him on turn next week and had him face the Royals on Sept. 2 to open the series in KC, however, he would not be in position to be pushed back on a couple of other off-days in September. He’d be in line for seven starts the rest of the season, still facing the Indians twice and White Sox and Twins once, but with the KC start added in.

That would still save Fulmer innings compared to if the Tigers had simply not pushed him back at all and had him face Minnesota this Thursday and go from there. He would have been in line for eight starts the rest of the season, including the Oct. 2 regular season finale at Atlanta.

All of these are theoretical scenarios. Brad Ausmus said Friday they’ve mapped out the rotation through next Thursday’s off-day with the pitchers they currently have, so they haven’t necessarily decided on the Kansas City series yet. That also doesn’t include injured starters Jordan Zimmermann and Mike Pelfrey, either of whom could give Ausmus an opportunity to skip Fulmer for a full turn if he so chooses.

Zimmermann is expected to make three rehab starts for Triple-A Toledo, beginning Friday and culminating on Labor Day, Sept. 5. If the Tigers were to bring him back the following weekend against Baltimore, they could conceivably buy Fulmer a turn off and set him up for the Cleveland series the following weekend. The same could go for Pelfrey, who has to throw a simulated game this week in Minnesota before his rehab schedule is set. He won’t have enough time left in the Triple-A schedule to get three rehab starts, but he could get two. If the Tigers want to be sure to hold Fulmer under 170 innings, using one of the returning starters to skip a turn is one way to get there.

The other factor, of course, is what happens if the Tigers fall out of contention before the final week of the season. When the Tigers clinched a playoff berth with a week to go in the 2006 regular season, Verlander didn’t pitch in any of the final six games, giving way to a Zach Miner spot start in the final weekend. The Tigers could simply play it by ear and see how the race unfolds before planning out Fulmer’s closing stretch.