Ian Kinsler remains out of the lineup after injuring his right ring finger Sunday. He can pinch-run, but most likely won’t start until at least Friday against the Orioles, manager Brad Ausmus told reporters in Chicago.
- Cameron Maybin, CF
- Jose Iglesias, SS
- Miguel Cabrera, 1B
- Victor Martinez, DH
- J.D. Martinez, RF
- Justin Upton, LF
- Casey McGehee, 3B
- Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
- Andrew Romine, 2B
P: Matt Boyd
- Tim Anderson, SS
- Tyler Saladino, 2B
- Melky Cabrera, LF
- Jose Abreu, 1B
- Todd Frazier, 3B
- Avisail Garcia, RF
- Jason Coats, DH
- Omar Narvaez, C
- Leury Garcia, CF
P: Miguel Gonzalez
Cameron Maybin returns to the starting lineup after re-injuring his left thumb on a slide at second base last Monday against the White Sox at Comerica Park. He’ll bat leadoff with Ian Kinsler getting a day off after he took a ground ball off his right ring finger in the ninth inning on Sunday.
TIGERS (career numbers against Sale)
- Cameron Maybin, CF (2-for-10, K)
- Jose Iglesias, SS (9-for-22, double, HR, walk, K)
- Miguel Cabrera, 1B (10-for-42, double, 2 HR, 10 walks, 16 K’s)
- Victor Martinez, DH (19-for-42, 3 doubles, 4 HR, 4 walks, 8 K’s)
- J.D. Martinez, RF (9-for-32, 2 doubles, 3 HR, 3 walks, 14 K’s)
- Justin Upton, LF (2-for-8, 2 walks, 4 K’s)
- JaCoby Jones, 3B (1-for-3, double, K)
- James McCann, C (3-for-18, double, 2 walks, 5 K’s)
- Andrew Romine, 2B (1-for-8, 2 K’s)
P: Justin Verlander
WHITE SOX (career numbers vs. Verlander)
- Adam Eaton, CF (7-for-27, 2 doubles, triple, walk, 6 K’s)
- Tim Anderson, SS (0-for-3, K)
- Melky Cabrera, LF (7-for-32, double, triple, HR, walk, 6 K’s)
- Jose Abreu, 1B (10-for-27, double, 4 HR, 2 walks, 8 K’s)
- Justin Morneau, DH (13-for-56, 5 doubles, 2 HR, 8 walks, 17 K’s)
- Todd Frazier, 3B (2-for-9, HR, 2 K’s)
- Alex Avila, C (2-for-5, HR, walk, 2 K’s)
- Avisail Garcia, RF (3-for-16, double, 4 K’s)
- Tyler Saladino, 2B (2-for-5, 2 doubles, K)
P: Chris Sale
Erick Aybar returns to the Tigers lineup, but Cameron Maybin remains out with a left thumb contusion. He said yesterday that it continues to hamper him when he’s hitting. Tyler Collins makes his second consecutive start in center field.
Edinson Volquez presents a tough matchup for both Martinez hitters. Victor, besides being 3-for-21 against him, is 2-for-23 over his last six games. J.D. is 7-for-18 over a five-game hitting streak, but just 1-for-15 off Volquez.
TIGERS (career numbers off Action Ed Volquez)
- Ian Kinsler, 2B (9-for-23, 2 doubles, walk, 3 K’s)
- Jose Iglesias, SS (4-for-16, K)
- Miguel Cabrera, 1B (6-for-13, double, 3 walks)
- Victor Martinez, DH (3-for-21, double, walk, 3 K’s)
- J.D. Martinez, RF (1-for-15, double, 2 walks, 4 K’s)
- Justin Upton, LF (10-for-23, 4 doubles, HR, walk, 4 K’s)
- Tyler Collins, CF (3-for-11, 2 doubles, 4 K’s)
- James McCann, C (2-for-5)
Andrew Romine, 3B
P: Daniel Norris
ROYALS (numbers against Dapper Dan Norris)
- Paulo Orlando, RF (0-for-2, walk)
- Cheslor Cuthbert, 3B (2-for-3, double)
- Eric Hosmer, 1B (1-for-5, double, K)
- Kendrys Morales, DH (0-for-7, walk)
- Salvador Perez, C (0-for-3)
- Whit Merrifield, LF
- Alcides Escobar, SS (2-for-5, triple, walk)
- Jarrod Dyson, CF
- Raul Mondesi, 2B (0-for-2)
P: Edinson Volquez
No Cameron Maybin once again for the Tigers. JaCoby Jones also is sitting after his three-strikeout game last night. Tyler Collins starts in center. Likewise, Lorenzo Cain remains out of the Royals lineup.
Update: Erick Aybar was originally scheduled to make his second start in a row at third base, but he was later scratched with left abdominal soreness. Andrew Romine steps in at third base, batting in the same spot.
Reminder: Tonight’s game is on Fox Sports 1, not Fox Sports Detroit. Kenny Albert and Tom Verducci have the call, with Ken Rosenthal on the field.
TIGERS (career numbers off Yordano Ventura)
- Ian Kinsler, 2B (8-for-25, double, 2 walks, 3 K’s)
- Jose Iglesias, SS (4-for-17, K)
- Miguel Cabrera, 1B (5-for-19, double, walk, 6 K’s)
- Victor Martinez, DH (7-for-25, 3 HR, 2 walks, 5 K’s)
- J.D. Martinez, RF (7-for-16, 2 doubles, 5 walks, 3 K’s)
- Justin Upton, LF (1-for-8, walk, 3 K’s)
- Tyler Collins, CF (3-for-13, walk, 3 K’s)
- James McCann, C (1-for-11, 3 K’s)
Erick AybarAndrew Romine, 3B (3-for-11, walk, 4 K’s)
P: Michael Fulmer
ROYALS (numbers vs. Fulmer)
- Jarrod Dyson, CF (0-for-2, walk)
- Cheslor Cuthbert, 3B (2-for-5, double, 2 K’s)
- Eric Hosmer, 1B (1-for-6, walk, K)
- Kendrys Morales, DH (3-for-5, 2 walks, K)
- Salvador Perez, C (1-for-7, HR, 2 K’s)
- Alex Gordon, LF (1-for-3, K)
- Paulo Orlando, RF (2-for-5, double, walk, K)
- Alcides Escobar, SS (0-for-5)
- Raul Mondesi, 2B
P: Yordano Ventura
The Tigers added to their bullpen depth on Saturday by purchasing the contract of Joe Mantiply from Double-A Erie, bringing up the lefty reliever for his first Major League stint.
Mantiply is expected to be available to pitch for Saturday night’s game against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium. He becomes the second reliever the Tigers have added since rosters expanded on Thursday. Detroit designated Donn Roach for assignment to open a spot on the 40-man roster.
The fact that Mantiply made the jump from Double-A makes the move a bit of a surprise. Though the 25-year-old spent most of July at Triple-A Toledo, he gave up four runs on 11 hits over 8 1/3 innings, walking one and striking out seven. He had much more success at Erie, posting a 2.47 ERA while allowing 40 hits over 51 innings with 11 walks and 62 strikeouts.
Mantiply was a Cinderella story of sorts in the Tigers system a couple years ago, vaulting from a 27th round Draft pick in 2013 to big-league camp two years later. He isn’t a power pitcher, but his sidearm delivery gives him deceptiveness — particularly against left-handed hitters, who batted .147 (15-for-102) with 41 strikeouts against him this season and .228 (18-for-87) last year.
Mantiply’s arrival gives manager Brad Ausmus another option against left-handed hitters as he tries sort through his lefty relief corps. Justin Wilson has given up a .301 (25-for-83) average to left-handed hitters, and has given up an .897 OPS on 24 hits over 17 2/3 innings to all hitters since the All-Star break. He gave up singles to all three batters he faced Friday night, creating a threat the Tigers had to call on Shane Greene to extinguish.
Kyle Ryan has emerged as a viable lefty matchup reliever, allowing a .247 (20-for-81) average to lefty hitters, and has been dominant over the past month. Blaine Hardy rejoined the Tigers at the end of August for depth but has yet to pitch in a game since his return.
Meanwhile, the Tigers have many more matchups with prominent left-handed hitters looming in September, from Royals All-Star Eric Hosmer to Baltimore’s Chris Davis and Pedro Alvarez, to even new White Sox DH and familiar foe Justin Morneau.
The Tigers get Miguel Cabrera back into the lineup after he sat Wednesday with right ankle soreness, but Cameron Maybin remains out with the bruised left thumb. He swung the bat earlier today, Brad Ausmus said, but still felt discomfort. He remains day-to-day. JaCoby Jones, who would’ve started at third base, moves to center field instead. Erick Aybar makes his second career start at third base.
The Royals have Wade Davis back in their bullpen, returned from the disabled list after spending the last month or so on the disabled list with a right flexor strain. However, Lorenzo Cain remains out with a left wrist injury.
TIGERS (career numbers vs. Duffy)
- Ian Kinsler, 2B (5-for-25, double, 2 HR, 3 walks, 3 K’s)
- Jose Iglesias, SS (2-for-10, triple, walk, K)
- Miguel Cabrera, 1B (6-for-27, 3 doubles, 8 walks, 8 K’s)
- Victor Martinez, DH (10-for-31, double, 2 HR, 2 walks, 3 K’s)
- J.D. Martinez, RF (2-for-17, double, HR, 2 walks, 8 K’s)
- Justin Upton, LF (0-for-6, 3 K’s)
- JaCoby Jones, CF
- James McCann, C (2-for-14, 2 walks, 6 K’s)
- Erick Aybar, 3B (2-for-3)
P: Anibal Sanchez
ROYALS (career numbers off Sanchez)
- Paulo Orlando, RF (3-for-9, double, 2 K’s)
- Cheslor Cuthbert, 3B (0-for-4, 2 K’s)
- Eric Hosmer, 1B (11-for-36, 4 doubles, HR, 3 walks, 3 K’s)
- Kendrys Morales, DH (5-for-21, 2 doubles, 3 walks, 5 K’s)
- Salvador Perez, C (4-for-20, 2 walks, 2 K’s)
- Alex Gordon, LF (5-for-19, double, 4 walks, 4 K’s)
- Alcides Escobar, SS (9-for-35, HR, 5 K’s)
- Jarrod Dyson, CF (3-for-26, double, walk, 7 K’s)
- Raul Mondesi, 2B (0-for-2)
P: Danny Duffy
Whenever JaCoby Jones is done tearing up Major League pitching in Detroit this season, he has a return engagement scheduled with the Arizona Fall League. The Tigers’ newest rookie contributor is one of seven Detroit prospects named to the Salt River Rafters roster.
Five of the players rank on MLB.com’s Top 30 Tigers prospect rankings, led by Double-A Erie slugger and All-Star Futures Game participant Christin Stewart (No. 3). Class A Lakeland right-hander Spencer Turnbull (12th), Erie reliever Adam Ravenelle (20th) and SeaWolves catcher Grayson Greiner (26th) also are headed to Arizona, as are Erie starter Artie Lewicki and Lakeland starter Jeff Thompson.
The list came together before the Tigers decided to call up Jones from Triple-A Toledo Tuesday. Now that Jones is up with the big club, the plan remains for him to take part, allowing him more at-bats after losing a month and a half serving out the final 39 games of his 2015 suspension. Jones is expected to be the Tigers’ priority player in the league, designating him for more playing time.
Jones, acquired from Pittsburgh at last year’s Trade Deadline for Joakim Soria, enjoyed a strong season in last year’s AFL, batting .280 (14-for-50) with home runs and four RBIs before he was suspended for testing positive for a substance of abuse. After a strong Spring Training, Jones finished 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.
Jones hit .340 (18-for-57) over his last 13 games in Toledo with five doubles and a triple.
Stewart, a first-round pick last year out of the University of Tennessee, began his first full pro season by punishing Florida State League pitching for 24 home runs and 22 doubles in 104 games at Class A Lakeland. He batted .264 with a .403 OBP, aided by 74 walks, for a .936 OPS on his way to FSL All-Star honors. He entered Wednesday batting .264 (14-for-63) at Erie with 10 walks and 22 strikeouts in 18 games.
Greiner, a third-round pick in 2014 out of South Carolina, has enjoyed an offensive renaissance since his June promotion to Erie, batting .289 (59-for-204) in 58 games with eight doubles, three triples, seven home runs and 30 RBIs, good for a .782 OPS.
One of the better arms Greiner has caught is Ravenelle, the former Vanderbilt reliever drafted in the fourth round two years ago. He’s 2-2 with a 4.00 ERA and four saves in six chances between Erie and Lakeland, allowing 46 hits over 54 innings with 32 walks and 54 strikeouts.
Lewicki, an eighth-round pick in 2014, owns a 3-8 record despite a 3.43 in 13 starts and two relief appearances between Erie and Lakeland. The right-hander has allowed 76 hits in as many innings but just three home runs with 16 walks and 67 strikeouts.
Turnbull, Detroit’s second-round pick out of Alabama, got off to a late start to the season, pitching in the rookie level Gulf Coast League until joining the Flying Tigers in August. He’s 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA over five starts in Lakeland, allowing 17 hits over 24 innings with seven walks and 22 strikeouts.
Thompson, a third-round pick in 2013 out of Louisville, has had an up-and-down season but has put his pitching together down the stretch. The 6-for-6 right-hander is 7-7 with a 3.52 ERA at Lakeland, allowing 99 hits over 117 2/3 innings with 66 walks and 99 strikeouts.
The first round of Tigers call-ups for expanded September rosters will be a small one. Buck Farmer will rejoin the team to bolster Detroit’s pitching depth, while John Hicks makes his Tigers debut to serve as an extra catcher.
Both callups are expected to take place Friday, when the Tigers open a three-game series against the Royals in Kansas City. Other moves will come after Triple-A Toledo finishes out its season next Monday.
While the Tigers have had varying levels of September reinforcements over the years, two constants have been an extra catcher and bullpen depth. The immediate moves serve those purposes.
Farmer will be up with the big club for the sixth time this season. With all those trips up and down Interstate 75, the 25-year-old right-hander has appeared in 10 games, allowing seven runs on 13 hits over 16 innings with nine walks and 15 strikeouts. Though Farmer has been strictly a reliever with the Tigers, he has been strictly a starter with the Mud Hens, posting a 5-6 record and 3.96 ERA in 20 starts.
Hicks’ first call-up with the Tigers will be his second Major League stint, having served as a backup catcher with the Mariners last year from the end of August through season’s end. He was in the Twins system to open the season until the Tigers claimed him off waivers April 23 to fill Bobby Wilson’s old role as insurance catcher.
The Tigers haven’t needed Hick’s services, but the former University of Virginia backstop has quietly enjoyed a solid summer in Toledo, batting .303 (73-for-241) with 20 doubles, eight homers and 42 RBIs in 70 games as a Hen. He has thrown out 24-of-61 would-be basestealers.
A third catcher on a roster comes in handy as insurance on days like Wednesday, when the Tigers had James McCann behind the plate and Jarrod Saltalamacchia starting at first base. If Cabrera’s ankle flares up again down the stretch, the Tigers can play Saltalamacchia at first without having to worry about shifting players around if Brad Ausmus wants to pinch-hit for McCann — or if there’s an injury.
Other Mud Hens likely to be called up include shortstop Dixon Machado alongside recently-demoted Matt Boyd and Casey McGehee, who can return as soon as Toledo’s season ends rather than wait the requisite 10 days. Still to be decided is the case of hard-throwing closer prospect Joe Jimenez and slugging outfielder Steven Moya. Reliever Warwick Saupold could face a different debate, given his arrest Sunday morning on an assault charge following a bar fight in Toledo; he’s due in court Sept. 13.
Though Miguel Cabrera enters the final month of the season with his best health in a few years, his right ankle continues to send reminders of his injury history. The surgically repaired ankle was sore Tuesday night, prompting Tigers manager Brad Ausmus to rest Cabrera for Wednesday’s series finale against the White Sox at Comerica Park.
“His surgically repaired ankle flares up from time to time,” Ausmus said. “It flared up in Minnesota [last week]. It happened again last night.”
Given Victor Martinez’s success against Chris Sale, giving Cabrera a day at DH wasn’t happening today. Thus, Ausmus decided to pair up a day off today with the Tigers’ scheduled off-day tomorrow, giving Cabrera two days of rest ahead of Friday’s series opener at Kansas City. Jarrod Saltalamacchia starts at first base today, while JaCoby Jones shifts from third base to center field.
Melky Cabrera, who left last night’s game with dehydration issues, was originally in Wednesday’s lineup but was scratched with stomach discomfort. J.B. Shuck gets his first swings at Verlander in his place.
TIGERS (career numbers off Sale)
- Ian Kinsler, 2B (9-for-38, double, 2 HR, 5 walks, 8 K’s)
- Jose Iglesias, SS (8-for-20, double, HR, K)
- Victor Martinez, DH (18-for-38, 3 doubles, 4 HR, 4 walks, 6 K’s)
- J.D. Martinez, RF (8-for-28, 2 doubles, 3 HR, 3 walks, 14 K’s)
- Justin Upton, LF (1-for-6, 3 K’s)
- James McCann, C (3-for-15, double, walk, 5 K’s)
- JaCoby Jones, CF
- Jarrod Saltalamacchia, 1B (0-for-0, walk)
- Andrew Romine, 3B (0-for-5, K)
P: Justin Verlander
WHITE SOX (career numbers vs. Verlander)
- Adam Eaton, RF (7-for-24, 2 doubles, triple, walk, 5 K’s)
- Tim Anderson, SS
- Justin Morneau, DH (13-for-53, 5 doubles, 2 HR, 8 walks, 15 K’s)
- Jose Abreu, 1B (9-for-24, double, 3 HR, 2 walks, 8 K’s)
- Alex Avila, C (1-for-2, walk)
- Todd Frazier, 3B (2-for-6, HR, K)
- Avisail Garcia, LF (3-for-14, double, 3 K’s)
- J.B. Shuck, CF
- Tyler Saladino, 2B (1-for-3, double, K)
P: Chris Sale
JaCoby Jones was back at the Mud Hens team hotel in Indianapolis, having just finished a three-hit game earlier in the evening, when he got the call from Hens manager Lloyd McClendon.
“[He] said, ‘Hey kid, what are you doing,’” Jones said. “I was like, ‘I’m just sitting down, watching TV.’ It was probably 11:30, 11 o’clock, and he was like, ‘You’re going to the big leagues.’ I was like, ‘Really?’ He was like, ‘Yeah.’
“That’s when I lost it, and started freaking out. So, it was excitement and joy, all at the same time.”
It was so much that he had to pause and make sure he wasn’t the subject of a gag.
“I paused for a second, kind of went, ‘I don’t know if this is real or not.’ Then I took it all in, and then I called my parents,” he said. “That was probably the best call I’ve ever had in my life, calling my parents to let them know I made it to the big leagues.”
After a whirlwind 13-month stretch, from Pirates prospect to Trade Deadline deal, to the Arizona Fall League, to a 50-game suspension, to a standout Spring Training and a midseason return, Jones had made it. He worried that his suspension for a drug of abuse last fall had ruined his chance at a call-up this year, whether he did well or not.
Now, he’s not only in the Majors, he’s in the middle of a playoff race. And with Cameron Maybin and Nick Castellanos both injured, the 24-year-old center fielder/third baseman has the opportunity to play a major role.
“I mean, ever since you’re a young kid, just thinking about it, watching all these guys playing in the big leagues, and wanting to do that,” Jones said. “It’s just a great moment, in your heart, with joy and everything. It’s a great time for me. I’m glad to be here, and I’m super excited about it.
“It’s good that they have faith in me, that they think I could do some stuff to help the team win. That gives me confidence that they have confidence in me. So that’s good. Hopefully I can continue to play ball the way I’ve always played ball, and help them win some games down the stretch, and keep this thing going.”
Jones’ parents were expected to arrive in Detroit in time to make the game. His sister and his friends are expected to make it into town on Wednesday.
“My mom was crying, as soon as I told her,” he said. “She was yelling and crying. I heard my dad in the background, screaming. So it was a good feeling for me to know when I called my parents, they were that excited about it.”