Sunday’s lineups: Tigers vs. White Sox

Alex Avila caught Justin Verlander for the better part of seven seasons, but he’s hitting against him today, batting eighth in the White Sox lineup. Adam Eaton takes over in center field for J.B. Shuck, with Jason Coats and Avisail Garcia flanking him.

On the Tigers side, the lineup is back to full strength, but the batting order is tweaked. Cameron Maybin remains in the second spot, with J.D. Martinez fifth. Nick Castellanos and Justin Upton move down to sixth and seventh, respectively. Brad Ausmus isn’t committing to it full-time, but as long as Maybin is hitting, he’s going with it.

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


tigerpitcherlogoTIGERS
(career numbers off Jose Quintana)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (10-for-33, 2 doubles, walk, 5 K’s)
  2. Cameron Maybin, CF
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (12-for-33, 4 doubles, HR, 3 walks, 4 K’s)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (13-for-30, 2 doubles, 2 K’s)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (5-for-20, triple, 2 walks, 8 K’s)
  6. Nick Castellanos, 3B (8-for-23, walk, 5 K’s)
  7. Justin Upton, LF (0-for-2, walk, K)
  8. James McCann, C (2-for-7, triple, 2 K’s)
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS (4-for-11, double, 2 K’s)

P: Justin Verlander

whitelogo1939logoWHITE SOX (career numbers vs. Verlander)

  1. Adam Eaton, CF (7-for-21, 2 doubles, triple, walk, 5 K’s)
  2. Jason Coats, LF
  3. Jose Abreu, 1B (8-for-21, double, 2 HR, 2 walks, 7 K’s)
  4. Todd Frazier, 3B (1-for-3)
  5. Brett Lawrie, 2B (1-for-2, HR, walk)
  6. Avisail Garcia, RF (3-for-11, double, K)
  7. Jimmy Rollins, DH (0-for-4, K)
  8. Alex Avila, C
  9. Tyler Saladino, SS

P: Jose Quintana

Saturday’s lineups: Tigers vs. White Sox

Miguel Cabrera is in the starting lineup at first base after leaving last night’s game with tightness in his lower back. Justin Upton gets the day off, shifting Mike Aviles to left field for the matchup with Chris Sale. That leaves Cameron Maybin in the second spot and J.D. Martinez fifth, with Nick Castellanos returning to the lineup in the sixth spot. For what it’s worth, Ausmus said he hasn’t decided yet whether to keep Maybin in the second spot once the cycle of days off ends and the Tigers lineup returns to full strength.

The White Sox called up outfielder Jason Coats from Triple-A Charlotte, where he was batting .335 with seven home runs. He goes straight into the starting lineup against Mike Pelfrey.

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

TIGERS (career numbers off Sale)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (6-for-27, 2 HR, 5 walks, 5 K’s)
  2. Cameron Maybin, CF
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (8-for-33, 2 HR, 9 walks, 12 K’s)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (16-for-34, 3 doubles, 4 HR, 2 walks, 5 K’s)
  5. J.D. Martinez, RF (6-for-22, 2 doubles, HR, 3 walks, 12 K’s)
  6. Nick Castellanos, 3B (1-for-16, walk, 10 K’s)
  7. James McCann, C (2-for-8, 3 K’s)
  8. Mike Aviles, LF (5-for-31, HR, 2 walks, 3 K’s)
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS (4-for-11, K)

P: Mike Pelfrey

WHITE SOX (career numbers vs. Pelfrey)

  1. Adam Eaton, RF (2-for-7)
  2. Tyler Saladino, SS
  3. Todd Frazier, 3B (1-for-3)
  4. Jose Abreu, 1B (3-for-8, double)
  5. J.B. Shuck, CF (1-for-5)
  6. Brett Lawrie, 2B (1-for-5, K)
  7. Jimmy Rollins, DH (14-for-47, triple, HR, walk, 4 K’s)
  8. Jason Coats, LF
  9. Dioner Navarro, C (2-for-4)

P: Chris Sale

Friday’s lineups: Tigers vs. White Sox


Day off for Nick Castellanos after an 0-for-4, four-strikeout game Thursday night. Mike Aviles gets his second consecutive start after going 2-for-4 with a double. Aviles also has more at-bats against Carlos Rodon than anyone else on the Tigers roster (granted, it’s still just seven at-bats). With Castellanos sitting, J.D. Martinez moves back to the fifth spot in the batting order behind Victor Martinez, allowing Cameron Maybin to hit second.

On the White Sox side, Alex Avila gets the start behind the plate in his return to Comerica Park.

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

tigerslogoTIGERS (career numbers vs. Rodon)

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

P: Jordan Zimmermann

whitesoxlogoWHITE SOX (career numbers off Zimmermann)

  1. Adam Eaton, RF
  2. Tyler Saladino, SS
  3. Todd Frazier, 3B (2-for-8, 3 K’s)
  4. Jose Abreu, 1B
  5. J.B. Shuck, CF
  6. Brett Lawrie, 2B
  7. Jimmy Rollins, DH (8-for-35, 2 HR, 2 walks, 5 K’s)
  8. Avisail Garcia, LF
  9. Alex Avila, C (0-for-2, walk, K)

P: Carlos Rodon

Wednesday’s lineups: Tigers at Angels

Brad Ausmus had talked earlier in the week about possibly working his bench with the turnaround from this getaway day on the West Coast to Thursday’s makeup game against the Yankees barely 24 hours later. With the Tigers looking to avoid a sweep and looking for offense against Matt Shoemaker, the only lineup change Wednesday is Jarrod Saltalamacchia behind the plate. Miguel Cabrera gets a day at DH, with Victor Martinez starting at first base. Cameron Maybin returns to the lineup after leaving Tuesday’s game as a precaution with left wrist soreness.

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

tigers1957logoTIGERS (career numbers off Shoemaker)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (2-for-9, double, K)
  2. J.D. Martinez, RF (1-for-7, walk, K)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, DH (1-for-9, 3 K’s)
  4. Victor Martinez, 1B (0-for-6, K)
  5. Nick Castellanos, 3B (0-for-4, K)
  6. Justin Upton, LF (1-for-3, K)
  7. Cameron Maybin, CF
  8. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C (0-for-1, 2 walks)
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS (0-for-3, walk)

P: Michael Fulmer

angelscalilogoANGELS

  1. Johnny Giavotella, 2B
  2. Kole Calhoun, RF
  3. Mike Trout, DH
  4. C.J. Cron, 1B
  5. Jefry Marte, 3B
  6. Rafael Ortega, LF
  7. Carlos Perez, C
  8. Shane Robinson, CF
  9. Gregorio Petit, SS

P: Matt Shoemaker

Tigers shift Sanchez to bullpen

Anibal Sanchez is heading to the bullpen. Tigers manager Brad Ausmus announced Wednesday that they’re pulling the struggling starter out of their rotation and moving him to relief while they try to work him through his season-long struggles.

It’s not necessarily a permanent move, Ausmus cautioned. At the same time, it comes with no assurance that he’ll rejoin the rotation.

“He definitely could work his way back into the starting rotation,” Ausmus said Wednesday afternoon. “But right now, there’s nothing promised. If people in the rotation are pitching well, they’re going to stay there. Hopefully he can get himself right and/or become a valuable part of our bullpen.”

The shift comes after Sanchez gave up three home runs in as many innings against the Angels Tuesday night. Detroit’s comeback left Sanchez with a no-decision for three innings of six-run ball, but it didn’t delay Detroit’s decision on him.

The numbers are startling for a pitcher who led the American League in ERA in 2013. Sanchez is 3-6 with a 6.67 ERA in 11 starts this season, allowing 66 hits over 56 1/3 innings. Fourteen of those hits have been home runs, most among AL pitchers and second only to former teammate Max Scherzer for the Major League lead.

Sanchez has given up 43 homers over 213 2/3 innings since the start of last season. His adjustments to try to keep his pitches down haven’t worked, including a simpler delivery they abandoned a month ago. Now, instead of tweaking during side session between starts, he’ll be doing more actual game work.

“As opposed to pitching on Monday and then not being in a game again until Saturday, you might pitch Tuesday and Wednesday, off Thursday, pitch Friday,” Ausmus said. “So you end up working your delivery more frequently over a span of time, as opposed to all in one day and then sitting. So the repetitiveness of that on a daily basis can help.”

Realistically, it was one of the few options the Tigers had. Sanchez could decline any minor-league assignment, and he has said all season that he’s healthy, which rules out a stint on the disabled list. He’s under contract through next season on the five-year, $80 million deal he signed after the 2012 season.

Sanchez, who said after Tuesday’s loss that his pitching wasn’t competitive, took the news in stride.

“It’s a different process than I’m used to,” Sanchez said. “Now I need to work for something, and I’m ready for it. I’m healthy. That’s the important thing right now. My head’s going to be up and I do what I can control to be back in the rotation.”

Who will take Sanchez’s rotation spot isn’t yet clear. His turn would’ve come up Monday against the Blue Jays at Comerica Park, but the Tigers can move up rookie Michael Fulmer to start on his regular four days’ rest. Matt Boyd, scheduled to make another spot start Thursday against the Yankees, could stick in the rotation, or the Tigers could move Shane Greene into his old starting role when he returns from the 15-day disabled list in the coming days.

Tuesday’s lineups: Tigers at Angels

Jose Iglesias returns to the lineup as the Tigers try to shake their struggles against lefties. But aside from J.D. Martinez, there aren’t a whole lot of great numbers to go around the Tigers lineup against Hector Santiago, who outpitched Anibal Sanchez for a 2-0 win here one year and a day ago.

The Angels, meanwhile, have brought up former Tiger Jefry Marte, who gets the start at third base tonight. He’ll take his swings against ex-teammate Anibal Sanchez, whose chances arguably are improved with the night start, when the ball struggles to carry here compared to day games.

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

84tigerslogoTIGERS (career numbers off Santiago)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (4-for-16, double, triple, 3 walks, K)
  2. J.D. Martinez, RF (3-for-9, double, HR, 2 K’s)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B (3-for-13, HR, 4 walks, 3 K’s)
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (4-for-16, 2 doubles, walk, 3 K’s)
  5. Nick Castellanos, 3B (1-for-9, HR, 3 K’s)
  6. Justin Upton, LF (1-for-3, 2 K’s)
  7. Cameron Maybin, CF
  8. James McCann, C (0-for-4, walk, K)
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS (2-for-7, 3 walks, K)

P: Anibal Sanchez

halologoANGELS (career numbers against Sanchez)

  1. Kole Calhoun, RF (1-for-3)
  2. Mike Trout, CF (2-for-10, HR, 4 K’s)
  3. Albert Pujols, 1B (7-for-22, 2 doubles, HR, walk, 3 K’s)
  4. C.J. Cron, DH
  5. Jefry Marte, 3B
  6. Rafael Ortega, LF
  7. Cliff Pennington, SS (1-for-2, 2 walks, K)
  8. Carlos Perez, C
  9. Gregorio Petit, 2B

P: Hector Santiago

Cabrera 2nd, V-Mart and Castellanos 4th in All-Star balloting

While three Tigers rank among the top five at their respective position in the first update of American League All-Star balloting, none of them are leading, putting the Tigers in line for a potential second straight Midsummer Classic without a player in the starting lineup.

  • Miguel Cabrera, who used a late charge last year to beat out Eric Hosmer at first base but couldn’t take part due to injury, trails Hosmer by just over 400,000 votes at first base, setting up another race between the two. Cabrera checked in at 466,523 votes.
  • Nick Castellanos, whose hot start at the plate put him among the AL batting leaders, ranks fourth in a stacked field at third base, garnering 253,160 votes. Orioles star Manny Machado leads the spot with 630,028 votes, followed by Kansas City’s Mike Moustakas and reigning AL MVP Josh Donaldson.
  • Victor Martinez, who ranks second among AL hitters with a .345 batting average, ranks fourth in voting at designated hitter with 241,208 votes. Red Sox slugger David Ortiz leads with 963,076 votes. Struggling Royals DH Kendrys Morales ranks second, with Toronto’s Edwin Encarnacion third.

Not among the top five at second base is Ian Kinsler, who entered Tuesday ranked 10th in the league with a .313 average and tied for second with 42 runs scored.

Memorial Day lineups: Tigers at Angels


Andrew Romine, born and raised in SoCal and a homeowner down the road, gets the start at shortstop tonight. Other than that, it’s a regular lineup for the Tigers tonight behind Justin Verlander against Jhoulys Chacin, who has never faced Detroit but has a history against several of its hitters.

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

tigerslogoTIGERS (career numbers off Chacin)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
  2. J.D. Martinez, RF (2-for-7, 3 K’s)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  4. Victor Martinez, DH (0-for-3, K)
  5. Nick Castellanos, 3B
  6. Justin Upton, LF (2-for-20, double, HR, 3 walks, 11 K’s)
  7. Cameron Maybin, CF (4-for-13, 2 walks, 2 K’s)
  8. James McCann, C
  9. Andrew Romine, SS

P: Justin Verlander

angelslogoANGELS (career numbers vs. Verlander)

  1. Kole Calhoun, RF (0-for-7, walk, 4 K’s)
  2. Mike Trout, CF (1-for-9, HR, 2 walks, 2 K’s)
  3. Albert Pujols, 1B (8-for-19, 3 doubles, HR, 6 walks, 4 K’s)
  4. C.J. Cron, DH (2-for-6, double, K)
  5. Johnny Giovatella, 2B (4-for-10, double, 2 K’s)
  6. Rafael Ortega, LF
  7. Cliff Pennington, SS (2-for-18, 2 walks, 6 K’s)
  8. Carlos Perez, C
  9. Gregorio Petit, 3B

P: Jhoulys Chacin

Sunday’s lineups: Tigers at Athletics

The last time the Tigers faced Rich Hill last month in Detroit, the former University of Michigan pitcher had twice as many strikeouts (eight) as hits allowed (four) over seven scoreless innings. He’ll face a slightly different lineup today, with James McCann and Cameron Maybin in place of Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Anthony Gose, but the game will most likely come down to how the main cogs in the lineup fare this time around against Hill. Ian Kinsler, Justin Upton, Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez, J.D. Martinez and Nick Castellanos combined to go 3-for-18 with six strikeouts in the April 26 matchup.

Mike Pelfrey was the Tigers starter in that game, giving up five runs on nine hits over a season-high 6 2/3 innings. With Michael Fulmer pitching well in his last two outings, and the Tigers debating Shane Greene’s role once he returns from the disabled list shortly, Pelfrey could use a good start in the rematch. As MLB Network pointed out, opponents’ .338 batting average against Pelfrey ranks third-highest among Major League pitchers with at least 40 innings this season. Former Tiger Alfredo Simon (.358) is ahead of him, along with Wily Peralta (also .358).

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

tigerroarlogoTIGERS (career numbers against Hill)

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

P: Mike Pelfrey

elephantsunglasseslogoATHLETICS (career numbers off Pelfrey)

  1. Coco Crisp, LF (4-for-5, double, HR)
  2. Jed Lowrie, 2B (3-for-11, double, walk)
  3. Stephen Vogt, C (2-for-5, double, K)
  4. Danny Valencia, 3B
  5. Khris Davis, DH (2-for-3, K)
  6. Yonder Alonso, 1B (1-for-4)
  7. Marcus Semien, SS (2-for-5, HR)
  8. Chris Coghlan, RF (4-for-21, double, 2 triples, 3 walks, K)
  9. Billy Burns, CF (1-for-4)

P: Rich Hill

Friday’s lineups: Tigers at Athletics

Justin Upton returns to the Tigers lineup after missing the Phillies series. Ian Kinsler returns after missing the last couple games. Cameron Maybin returns to the seventh spot in the order, with Kinsler and J.D. Martinez batting first and second.

The Tigers don’t have any at-bats against Sean Manaea, whom they missed by a couple days before the A’s called him up for his debut. Likewise, Oakland hasn’t seen Michael Fulmer for the same circumstances.

(Note: I’m off this series. I’ll pick up the beat again on Memorial Day in Anaheim.)

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

tigerpitcherlogoTIGERS

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
  2. J.D. Martinez, RF
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  4. Victor Martinez, DH
  5. Nick Castellanos, 3B
  6. Justin Upton, LF
  7. Cameron Maybin, CF
  8. James McCann, C
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS

P: Michael Fulmer

swinginaslogoATHLETICS

  1. Coco Crisp, LF
  2. Billy Burns, CF
  3. Stephen Vogt, C
  4. Danny Valencia, 3B
  5. Jed Lowrie, 2B
  6. Khris Davis, DH
  7. Yonder Alonso, 1B
  8. Marcus Semien, SS
  9. Chris Coghlan, RF

P: Sean Manaea

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