Results tagged ‘ Edwin Jackson ’

Wednesday: Tigers at White Sox

While the White Sox clubhouse was a cauldron Wednesday night with the trade of Edwin Jackson and Mark Teahen and the benching of Alex Rios, it was a laid-back morning on the Tigers side. Brennan Boesch is out of the starting lineup today, Leyland said, because he’s going to start all four games against the Angels coming up.

TIGERS

  1. Austin Jackson, CF
  2. Ryan Raburn, LF
  3. Magglio Ordonez, RF
  4. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  5. Victor Martinez, DH
  6. Jhonny Peralta, SS
  7. Carlos Guillen, 2B
  8. Wilson Betemit, 3B
  9. Alex Avila, C

P: Max Scherzer

WHITE SOX

  1. Juan Pierre, LF
  2. Omar Vizquel, 3B
  3. Paul Konerko, DH
  4. Adam Dunn, 1B
  5. Carlos Quentin, RF
  6. A.J. Pierzynski, C
  7. Alexei Ramirez, SS
  8. Alejandro De Aza, CF
  9. Gordon Beckham, 2B

P: John Danks

Tigers teammates react to trade

Can’t say what Justin Verlander and Miguel Cabrera — or Carlos Guillen, for that matter — think of the Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson trade, but got a sampling from a couple current Tigers.

Why does this matter, you ask? Because it matters to manager Jim Leyland.

“I think one of the big keys is how well our veteran players react to this,” Leyland said Wednesday. “If they react the proper way, with a positive attitude and the proper approach, I think this is gonna work out great. I really do.”

Catcher Gerald Laird, himself the subject of trade rumors this offseason, tried to put a good face on it. He talked with his younger brother Brandon, a Yankees prospect, about the talent coming over from New York.

“It’s tough to lose two guys like that, to lose one of your top of the rotation pitchers and your starting center fielder which was a big part of our success and a big face-of-the-franchise type guy with the community and the team,” Laird said. Obviously, it’s a tough trade because they’re two really good guys. But I’m sure Dave [Dombrowski] and the organization have their mind set on a direction they want to go, and I’m sure they’re making decisions they feel is best for the team.”

It’s a direction change Laird wasn’t completely foreseeing when the Tigers lost their AL Central tiebreaker two months ago.

“You look at it and, yeah, we didn’t get to where we wanted, but we felt like we had a really good year,” Laird said. “We felt like we had a really good core of guys. To lose those two guys, that’s when you think, ‘Wow.’ [Granderson] is a big time player, and he’s definitely going to help New York out. He’s a tough player to lose. The guy is a remarkable talent and a remarkable person. But I feel we have a good group of core guys that I think can help us win.

“It’s one of those things where guys are going to step up now. I’m sure Nate’s ready to bounce back and Bondo. I think we’re still going to be a solid rotation, but to lose a guy like [Jackson], it’s definitely tough.”

With the shift towards youth, Laird said, comes some added responsibility.

“It’s going to be up to the veterans to welcome these guys and help them out as much as we can. The better they fit, the better they’re going to be.”

Laird was playing golf when he heard the news.

“I kind of just shook my head and said wow,” he said.

Reliever Zach Miner, now potentially an elder statemen in a young Tigers bullpen, took a pragmatic look at it.

“I think all of us understand the way the business of baseball works,” Miner wrote in an email. “It would be
naive of any of us players to think we would have the same teammates all of our
career, and if management and the coaching staff feel this was necessary to keep our
team moving in the right direction, then we have to trust their judgment.

“That
being said, it will be hard to replace Curtis and Edwin’s production for our
team, and in my opinion impossible to replace Curtis’ leadership in the
clubhouse, on the field, and in the community.”

Granderson/Jackson trade is official

It's a done deal: the Tigers have sent Curtis Granderson to the Yankees and Edwin Jackson to the Diamondbacks in exchange for Max Scherzer, Daniel Schlereth, Austin Jackson and Phil Coke. The three GMs are scheduled to have a news conference at 4:30 pm. Look for that on MLB.com if you're not by a TV.

Granderson, Jackson deal agreed upon … now the wait

The Tigers, Diamondbacks and Yankees have agreed in principle on their trade, sending Curtis Granderson to New York and Edwin Jackson to Arizona. For now, however, the trade is still pending final reviews. Granderson hasn’t yet heard from the Tigers, much like Andrew Miller didn’t hear from the Tigers after he was in the Miguel Cabrera trade. In fact, Granderson hasn’t heard from the Tigers for a while now, which wasn’t a good sign in itself.

I think everybody anticipated the fallout from this deal was going to be big. Judging from what I’m hearing from folks back in Detroit, it’s huge. How that follows over the coming days as the reports and the interviews unfold is going to be very interesting.

Telling comment on Jackson from Brewers GM

By now, you can tell it’s going to be a crazy stretch of reported interest in the Tigers’ trading pieces, and it’s just starting. But Brewers general manager Doug Melvin, in confirming contact with the Tigers on Edwin Jackson, had a telling remark to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel on how this could play out:

“Dave’s in charge of that one,” Melvin told the J-S. “They’ll identify which clubs are matches and they’ll call them. He’s looking for young players and young pitchers.”

That’s a little bit more than listening, though not necessarily a quick sale. The youth part isn’t a surprise, of course.

They might’ve had a better match before the Brewers traded J.J. Hardy trade with Minnesota, but the Brewers still have some young pitching. They also have outfielder Corey Hart, in whom the Tigers reportedly had interest in the past.

Dombrowski: Tigers aren't having a fire sale

As the GM meetings rumor mill began to swirl around the Tigers Wednesday, team president/general manager Dave Dombrowski wanted to dispel a notion that popped up.

“We’re not having a fire sale,” he said by phone Wednesday.

He was surprised the question came up, in fact, and he thought it was a rather ridiculous question. Still, given the buzz coming out of the meetings on Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson, it had to be asked.

Others gave no impression of a looming payroll purge, either, so far as they knew. Agents who have talked with the Tigers, too, suggested that wasn’t their understanding, though they didn’t claim to have an intricate knowledge of the team’s plans.

The impression that came out today was that of a team that needs to get creative to look for ways to improve a team that didn’t win the AL Central while having a lot of money tied into untradeable contracts. So they have to look at what the tradeable contracts can get them. One source suggested that after a season like the Tigers had, they could listen to interest on a lot of their players, that the notion of untouchable players was questionable.

So on Jackson and Granderson, and maybe Gerald Laird, maybe even others, they’re going to listen and discuss. If you look at it, they don’t have a whole lot of other players who would attract a nice package in return. But there’s no indication they’re going to move if they don’t like the return.

More on Jackson

When rumors started up last fall about the Tigers potentially trading Magglio Ordonez, team president/general manager Dave Dombrowski eventually said that they weren’t looking to trade him. He also said, however, that they would listen on just about any player another club would call him about.

Fast forward to now, with the Tigers reportedly at least listening to interest on Edwin Jackson, and Dombrowski isn’t saying much, which is telling.

“Do not have anything to say about any trade conversations other than to say we have visited with many clubs during the meetings, which is customary,” Dombrowski said in an email Wednesday morning from the GM meetings in Chicago.

He did add, however, that they will have to make some tough decisions this offseason, particularly with the number of free agents they have.

Jackson, an All-Star in the first half of the season before struggling down the stretch, is a tough decision, particularly if trading him can net him from help in return at shortstop or in the bullpen.

That doesn’t mean it’s a payroll decision or a sign of slashing ahead. There’s a difference between cutting payroll and swapping it, particularly if any deal would end up even in salary. There’s also a difference between cutting a salary and selling high on a player.

At this point, Dombrowski said, nothing is close to a deal on anything.

Could Tigers trade Edwin Jackson? Tough decision

The tight payroll the Tigers have to manage is the biggest challenge in their offseason dealings. That much was clear even before the report Tuesday night on Edwin Jackson. How they deal with it, and the difficult decisions it could prompt, will be a huge factor in how the Tigers look in 2010 and beyond, both with free agents and even with players under team control.

So yes, it could even force the Tigers to make a decision on Jackson, whose maturation as a pitcher this past season made him an All-Star before his second-half struggles left the Tigers trying to figure out what to make of the gifted young right-hander.

A report from FOXSports.com suggests the Tigers are at least listening to interest in Jackson, their No. 2 starter this past season and a 13-game winner. While there are no indications any deal is close, it’s at least a reflection of the choices the Tigers have to consider as the offseason unfolds, and what they might have to consider on Jackson regardless of finances.

Like staff ace and 19-game winner Justin Verlander, Jackson is eligible for arbitration and could qualify for free agency in two seasons. The Tigers are expected to talk with Verlander and his agent about a long-term contract this winter. Dombrowski hasn’t commented on that matter, but he said last month that they hope to keep Verlander in a Tigers uniform for a long time.

They’re both young, both coming off impressive seasons, and both in a position to get a hefty raise in arbitration. Several other Tigers are up for arbitration, too, including catcher Gerald Laird, utilityman Ramon Santiago and relievers Zach Miner, Bobby Seay and Joel Zumaya.

Other Tigers under long-term deals will see their salaries rise next year. Magglio Ordonez’s $18 million option was the most publicized situation. Miguel Cabrera’s salary leaps from $15 million to $20 million. Carlos Guillen’s salary jumps from $10 million to $13 million. Nate Robertson goes from $7 million to $10 million. Curtis Granderson gets a $2 million raise to $5.5 million.

Dontrelle Willis’ salary, too, will rise, from $10 million to $12 million.

Those salaries add up to $75 million, with nearly $23 million more going to third baseman Brandon Inge and pitchers Jeremy Bonderman, Rick Porcello and Jacob Turner. The Tigers have a slew of contracts expiring at season’s end to provide relief, but that doesn’t help them deal with payroll this year while Michigan’s economy suggests more tough times ahead.

“We’re all aware that the economy is not the same all over the country,” Dombrowski told FOXSports.com. “We’ve been hit hard in our area.”

Add in at least four free agents the Tigers must replace or re-sign — Fernando Rodney, Brandon Lyon, Placido Polanco and Adam Everett — and the Tigers have a challenge.

That doesn’t necessarily mean the Tigers have to make a selloff. Owner Mike Ilitch’s desire to win in baseball is a great financial equalizer, and their willingness to even consider Cuban pitcher Aroldis Chapman suggests some ability to spend. But with the long-term contracts likely not going anywhere, simply keeping payroll steady could be a tough squeeze mathematically.

With Jackson, too, there’s the question of what to make of his 2009 season. Though he ranked seventh among AL starters with a 3.62 ERA and 214 innings, everyone who followed his season knows his first- and second-half difference. He entered the All-Star break with a 7-4 record and a 2.52 ERA, allowing just 94 hits over 121 2/3 innings with 97 strikeouts and averaging better than 6 2/3 innings per start.

Statistically, he went 6-5 after that, but gave up a 5.07 ERA. 106 hits and 17 home runs in 92 1/3 innings. Stuffwise, he lost movement in his slider and went predominantly to his fastball in some starts down the stretch.  Tweaks in his side sessions between starts made a little difference, but didn’t turn things around.

It was his second straight year with a second-half dropoff after a strong turnaround in 2007, and it left some with a sense of befuddlement and disappointment. The Tigers have to decide what it means in the bigger picture. Even with the dropoff, his ability to eat innings was critical to Leyland’s management of the bullpen.

What can the Tigers get out of Jackson next year? What can the Tigers get for him? Difficult questions.

On Jackson and tipping pitches

jackson091709.jpgOne of the things pitching coach Rick Knapp mentioned Sunday that he and bullpen coach Jeff Jones were working on with Edwin Jackson in his morning side session was a quirk that they believed was tipping his slider, letting hitters know it was coming. But the thing is, it’s still a good enough pitch that hitters haven’t been pounding it. Really, they haven’t been swinging at it, and Knapp’s belief was that by knowing it was coming, hitters were taking it so that Jackson would fall behind in counts, or just not finish off hitters with two strikes.

It’s an interesting little twist on the pitch-tipping saga. A lot of times, you hear about it allowing hitters to attack a pitch. Alfredo Figaro went from a decent Major League debut against the Brewers in June to a pounding from Astros hitters a week later, some Tigers believed, because he was tipping pitches. In that case, the Gameday app showed Astros hitters pummeled Figaro’s breaking balls and offspeed pitches while laying off the fastball. A few years ago, the White Sox found something in Verlander’s mannerisms that tipped his pitches, and pounded his changeup.

In Jackson’s case, Royals and Blue Jays hitters generally went after his fastball his last two starts. Yet if you look at his pitch data, his ball-strike ratio wasn’t any different than usual, and he still got a high number of swings and misses, 12 of them from the Royals. However, it didn’t take looking at Gameday to notice Jackson was throwing fewer sliders. Leyland complained about it after the Royals outing. Jackson is throwing 25 percent sliders this year, according to fangraphs.com, compared with about 20 percent last season.

I don’t know what Jackson was doing to tip his slider; Knapp obviously isn’t going to say it. But I do know he had Jackson working on his mannerisms over and over leading into his delivery during his side session Sunday morning in the Metrodome. Will it make a difference? We’ll find out, but the question will be whether hitters swing more at his slider, not less.

Galarraga out, Robertson in

ST. PETERSBURG – After Sunday’s come-from-behind 5-3 win,
Jim Leyland’s starting rotation shrunk from six to five.

Coming off a Saturday outing when he gave up six runs in
just 2 1/3 innings of work, the Tigers’ skipper announced that Armando
Galarraga was going to be used out of the bullpen and Nate Robertson would continue
to be a starter.

Sunday starter Edwin Jackson will be given an extra day of
rest and start on Saturday, and Robertson will go in the series opener against
the Blue Jays on Friday.

How long Robertson will go on as the starter is still
unknown, but Leyland isn’t looking at it as a one-shot deal.

“I am thinking Galarraga is out of the rotation and maybe
Nate can go on,” Leyland said. “I’m hoping [Robertson is] pretty fresh, and
that can be big for us. But I’m not going to start Galarraga at this time.”

Galarraga, battling some right elbow inflammation, was
originally slated to start for Triple-A Toledo on Friday but started in the big
leagues on Saturday so Jarrod Washburn could rest his balky left knee.

Leyland said prior to Sunday’s game that he didn’t think
anything was physically wrong with Galarraga, but after he gave up four hits
and three walks and threw 54 pitches before even getting out of the third, he
knew it was time to make a change.

“I just don’t think things are totally right,” Leyland said.
“At this juncture, I’m not planning on starting him – at this juncture. But
saying that, maybe a little more rest, we can tinker around in the bullpen a
little bit there, depending on Washburn. We’ve still got some things up in the
air, so I can’t set anything in stone, but my intention right now is not to
start him.”

– Alden Gonzalez

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