Results tagged ‘ Zach Miner ’

Seay has test, awaiting word from doctors

Bobby Seay had his MRI exam over the weekend, but is awaiting word from doctors on the results. Head athletic trainer Kevin Rand said today that Seay will visit Rays team physician Dr. Koco Eaton on Tuesday and Dr. James Andrews on Thursday to go over what they see in the results.

As for Zach Miner, he’s going to be examined by team physician Dr. Stephen Lemos on Thursday and won’t throw until then.

Seay definitely out, set to have MRI

Bobby Seay had a setback in his bullpen session Saturday morning and will have another MRI exam on his ailing left shoulder.

Seay said he will have the exam in the next couple days was expected to have the exam Saturday and have the results checked out by a few specialists, including orthopaedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews. Seay had an MRI last month after he was first shut down from throwing, but results showed no structural damage.

Manager Jim Leyland said Saturday it’s a certainty that Seay will begin the season on the disabled list.

The news was somewhat better on fellow Tigers reliever Zach Miner, whose MRI results came back negative. He has been diagnosed with a muscle strain around his elbow and hopes rest and treatment will allow him to start throwing again in the coming days.

Miner is still hopeful he can be ready for Opening Day. Leyland indicated he isn’t sure.

Seay was originally diagnosed with bursitis in his upper left arm and tendinitis in the shoulder. He had started throwing last week and began throwing off a mound earlier in the week. His latest attempt, though, stopped before it started.

“Throwing in the bullpen today, I couldn’t get my arm in a throwing position,” Seay said.

That was the indication that it was time for another look in the elbow. His next exam will include a dye injection in the elbow to give a more detailed view.

Seay just wants to know. He’s been dealing with discomfort since he started his throwing program in January, and he wants to get it healthy rather than make it worse.

“At this point, I’m just fed up with the pain associated with trying to get loose and feelings in my arm I shouldn’t be having,” he said. “Whether it’s major or minor, I have to get some peace of mind to know what’s going on.”

With Seay out, the Tigers go from having a potential surplus of left-handed relievers to trying to fill in without their veteran lefty specialist. Phil Coke is all but certain to be part of the group, having been taken out of consideration for a starting role a couple weeks ago. Sidearmer Fu-Te Ni was a valuable reliever down the stretch last year after a midseason call-up. Offseason signing Brad Thomas has had success this spring. Daniel Schlereth is a valuable relief prospect after coming over from Arizona in the Edwin Jackson trade, but he has had his share of spring struggles.

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.”

Perry, Miner likely key in Saturday's game

Though Jim Leyland is treating this as a starting assignment for rookie Alfredo Figaro, his remarks last night that he would not hesitate to make a change early if Figaro got in trouble essentially made tonight’s game sound like a bullpen start. Leyland said he would probably have Ryan Perry ready early if he had to make a real quick change, then Zach Miner going a little later. Eddie Bonine is available if needed tonight.

Perry has pitched in a lot of different situations this year, but one common denominator down the stretch has been that they’re usually with the Tigers trailing. He has entered with Tigers deficits in 10 of his last 14 games since August 23, and one of the exceptions was a tie. He has pitched with a lead just five times in the last three months, and just three save situations since mid-June. In most of those situations, his job was to keep the Tigers close, rather than mop-up work.

Robertson in line for Sunday start

Just got back from Tigers clubhouse, where not surprisingly, Nate Robertson appears to be in line for that Sunday start at Minnesota in Jarrod Washburn’s place. Jim Leyland said Robertson is scheduled to throw an extended bullpen session Thursday, which should determine whether he feels well enough to start. If he can go, the Tigers are set in their rotation. If he can’t, well, Leyland hasn’t said it, but one would think he might have to revisit his plans for Zach Miner at that point.

Tigers' latest pitching conundrum

OK, here’s what we know about the Tigers’ pitching situation:

  • Jarrod Washburn’s left knee injury is more than just simple soreness. It’s now swelling, and it isn’t getting any better. And as it is now, he can’t pitch through it, leaving his next turn Sunday at Minnesota unlikely.
  • Because the Tigers don’t have an off-day until Monday, and Eddie Bonine would seem unlikely to start again on short rest, the Tigers can’t simply skip the spot for a turn.
  • Armando Galarraga is now available to pitch out of the bullpen, but he said the inflammation in his right elbow most likely won’t allow him enough pitches in an outing to start again this year.
  • Nate Robertson felt fine moving around Tuesday after three days of rest following his diagnosis of pelvic inflammation. He’ll try to throw a short side session Wednesday. If he can, he figures he’ll be available in the bullpen. Of course, that plan came before Washburn’s setback Tuesday night.
  • Zach Miner pitched effectively for two innings Tuesday, but manager Jim Leyland wanted to stop him there so that he could be available in the coming days. However, Leyland said, “Zach will remain in the bullpen.”
  • Jeremy Bonderman, the only other pitcher in the Tigers bullpen with recent starting experience, isn’t stretched out to start.
  • Leyland said he has no idea who will start Sunday, but planned to discuss his options with coaches Wednesday.

How Robertson feels in his bullpen session would seemingly play a major role in how the Tigers proceed. If he’s fine, he makes the Tigers’ options easier. If he isn’t, well, it becomes more complicated, and it gets a little closer to the “absolutely necessary” condition that Leyland placed on the possibility of starting Miner when he talked about it last week.

Wild week and a half for Miner

Eight days ago, Zach Miner walked into the visiting clubhouse at Fenway Park and found out he was the Tigers’ emergency starter. Eighty-two pitches on day’s rest followed.

Two days ago, Miner was flying back home to Florida to be with his wife for the birth of their second son, Jackson. Mother and baby are doing fine, by the way.

Yesterday, Miner was sitting in the airport at West Palm Beach for five hours while a maintenance crew drove down a spare landing tire from Orlando to put on the plane that would eventually fly him back home. He was worried he’d get in trouble for not getting back to the team in time for Wednesday’s game.

“I was actually more stressed sitting in the airport yesterday,” Miner said. “That was as stressful as anything.”

Today, Miner was quietly a hero in the Tigers’ comeback victory. His two hitless innings after the Mariners scored six runs off Jarrod Washburn gave Detroit a chance to eventually erase the deficit, not to mention, get back to the plate quickly.

Manager Jim Leyland, for one, appreciated it. He has been flustered by Miner at various times, but this wasn’t one of them.

“I wish Zach Miner would realize what a valuable piece he is,” Leyland said, “and I wish he understood how valuable we think he is. He’s a big part, an important part, as is [Fu-Te] Ni. I can’t pitch Perry and Lyon and Seay every day. Today, he was tremendous.”

For his first game outing since that spot start last Wednesday, he was remarkably solid.

Miner arrived at the park in time for extra innings if they happened, but it ended up a moot point. With Justin Verlander on the mound, the Tigers were fine without heavy bullpen use. But just to get his arm fresh, Miner played catch after the game.

Once a 58-minute rain delay Thursday ensured Washburn would’ve last past the sixth inning, those throws came up big for Miner, who hit the strike zone with 17 of his 26 pitches and reached just one three-ball count.

“I felt pretty sharp throwing in the bullpen,” Miner said. “I think throwing last night helped me out a lot.”

As for Leyland’s comments, Miner appreciated them. He hasn’t been shy about his desire to be a Major League starter, and the roller coaster he went on in Spring Training and into April was a rough one for that. Now that he’s in the bullpen, he has far from a defined role, everywhere from mopup to occasional setup to, in Thursday’s case, protecting a one-run deficit.

In his case, it’s nice to be valued.

“I think sometimes you overlook it,” Miner said, “because you sometimes think some people have more important roles than you.”

Galarraga scratched; Miner to start

Armando Galarraga has been scratched from his scheduled start Wednesday night against the Red Sox with flu-like symptoms.

Zach Miner, who was in the Tigers at the start of the season, will start in Galarraga’s place. Miner pitched two innings Monday, so it might well take two or three pitchers to fill the innings Galarraga would’ve covered.

Galarraga has been dealing with a sore throat and fever, among other symptoms, since before the Tigers arrived in town. Head athletic trainer Kevin Rand said Wednesday that Galarraga hasn’t been able to hold down solid food for two days, sapping his energy level. He had been sent back to the team hotel the last two days to get his rest and keep his illness from spreading around the team.

Galarraga arrived in the Tigers clubhouse Wednesday afternoon, but clearly didn’t look well. He was scheduled to see a doctor later in the day.

This will be the second time in three years that Miner has made a spot start at Fenway Park. He was called up from Triple-A Toledo to start the first game of a day-night doubleheader in 2007 after scheduled starter Mike Maroth was scratched with food poisoning.

Miner owns a 5-2 record and 4.60 ERA in 33 games. In four starts, he’s 2-1 with a 4.74 ERA, pitching 19 innings with 23 hits allowed, 11 walks and 12 strikeouts.

Leyland on French, Miner

The Tigers’ first pitching change of the night seemed almost like a previous night’s game by the time the Tigers rallied ahead for good in the 16th inning Friday night/Saturday morning, but the move from starter Luke French to Zach Miner ended up playing a big role in this game. French, while walking two hitters and working deep into counts on others, managed to keep his outing from far worse with timely outs. Miner, after retiring Michael Cuddyer to strand two runners in the fifth, allowed five of six batters to reach base safely in the sixth, capped by back-to-back triples that drove in three runs and set up the game-tying sacrifice fly.

The rest is a long bit of history.

“Everybody’s got to make their contributions tonight,” Leyland said. “Because Zach had a bad night, it cost us a lot. That’s just the way it is. That can’t happen. You’ve got a 7-2 lead. You’ve got to go in there and get us three outs. That’s just the way it is. I’m not upset with Zach; I’m just making a point. That’s why I talk about every pitcher making a contribution. …

“This game should’ve never gotten to this point. You’ve got to come in and stop it right now. It’s 7-2, You’ve got a free run, nobody on base. He just didn’t get it done. He was up with everything and he had a bad night. But he’s been doing a great job, too. I want to make that clear.”

On French, Leyland suggested the rookie left-hander’s 10-day layoff left him rusty.

“I think a lot of that was from the layoff,” Leyland said. “So he did fine. He actually came out of it doing fine.”

As for Saturday’s bullpen, Leyland said everyone should be available but Zumaya, whom he said he’s going to rest at least Saturday and possibly Sunday after 50-plus pitches.

Miner out of rotation running

The shuffling of Rick Porcello pushed Zach Miner out of what might’ve been a starting assignment for Saturday. But it isn’t just the Spring Training rotation in which Miner is on the outside looking in.

Manager Jim Leyland told Miner on Saturday that barring something unforeseen, he will not be in the Tigers rotation when the season opens in little more than two weeks.

That confirms what had been expected, that Miner would be used as a reliever on this club. Whether he’s set to make the Tigers bullpen, however, is a question Leyland left unanswered when he talked with reporters Saturday morning.

The recent performance of left-hander Nate Robertson, who has had back-to-back solid performances, might well have accelerated the decision to pull Miner from the starting competition. Robertson, Miner and Dontrelle Willis were viewed as the leading candidates going into camp, with Porcello as a long shot before his continued strong performances and impressive poise seemingly forced his way into serious consideration.

While Porcello and Robertson have started to stand out, Miner has had a statistically rough Spring Training, allowing 14 earned runs on 23 hits over 13 innings. He had been relatively consistent throwing strikes until his final outing last Monday, when he walked three Cardinals over as many innings.

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