Results tagged ‘ Zach Miner ’

Miner growing frustrated

Zach Miner hasn’t been putting up solid numbers in his starts, and as Spring Training heads into its final few weeks, he very much appears to be on the outside of the fifth starter competition. For someone who believes he can be a starter on this staff and would very much prefer that over relief, it’s building some frustration from him. Monday’s outing, which he gave up a four-run opening inning, percolated it some more.

“Oh yeah, I’m clearly frustrated,” Miner said. “I’ve been working hard. I got here two weeks early to Spring Training to start working. It’s just the last few outings, things haven’t been going my way. That’s frustrating, because you’re putting the work in and you feel good physically. Whether it’s the delivery out of sync or you just don’t make the pitches when you need to or balls fall in, it gets frustrating.

“You can handle it once or twice if you don’t get the results that you want, but after a few of them, it’s kind of like, ‘All right. Uncle.'”

In Miner’s case, it’s three out of his last four outings in which the numbers haven’t been strong. And this was the first one of the bunch in which he struggled with walks, three in as many innings. In terms of his pitches, though, he says he feels strong.

“”If I wasn’t fighting for a job, despite the numbers, I would feel great about myself getting ready for the season,” Miner said. “I’m throwing strikes. I’m feeling good physically. My pitches are coming around. It’s one of those things where if your spot’s guaranteed, nobody seems to worry about Spring Training if you don’t get the results or your numbers don’t look good.”

Offensive woes continue as Tigers lose again

JUPITER, Fla. — The Tigers failed to get anything going offensively again, mustering just six hits in a 6-2 loss to the Cardinals at Roger Dean Stadium on Tuesday. Yes, the potential Nos. 1, 3, 4 and 5 hitters in the order are playing in the World Baseball Classic, but manager Jim Leyland said he wishes some of the young guys that are here now would take more advantage of the opportunity. 

And the problem lies with them falling behind on counts early.
“It’s fastball, strike one. Curveball, strike two. Then they’re on the defense. You can’t let
that happen,” said Leyland, whose team struck out eight times Tuesday, after posting 11 Ks on Monday. 
“You can’t take a fastball down the middle and a breaking ball down the middle and expect to hit big-league pitching. It’s just not going to happen. I don’t care who you are.”
* In case you’re not scoring at home, the Tigers (3-8) have mustered two runs per game in their last five — all losses.
* Zach Miner wasn’t as sharp as Rick Porcello was yesterday — another candidate for the No. 5 spot in the starting rotation. Miner gave up three runs and seven hits in three innings to move his record to 1-2 with a 9.00 ERA this spring. 

“I felt like I was throwing the ball well,” Miner said. “I just didn’t get
it down when I needed to to get results. The old saying is you can’t control
results. But I wish you could.”

* Miner said he didn’t feel pressured by the 20-year-old Porcello having a good outing on Monday: “You just want to do well no matter what. Whether everybody is doing great, or they’re doing terrible.”

* Ryan Perry pitched another scoreless inning on Tuesday. That makes 4 2/3 straight for the 22-year-old right-hander. 

Alden Gonzalez

Tuesday happenings

JUPITER, Fla. — Here are some quick pregame notes that came out before the Tigers-Cardinals game at Roger Dean Stadium:

* Joel Zumaya (shoulder) played catch in Lakeland, Fla., today. Manager Jim Leyland said he’s more than likely going to go ahead and pitch him an inning during an intrasquad game on Saturday — which will also see Jeremy Bonderman pitch. 
* Backup catcher Matt Treanor was originally scheduled to make the trip to Jupiter, Fla., but Leyland scratched him because of lingering issues with his offseason sports hernia surgery. The Tigers’ manager said he isn’t sure how long he’ll be out, but for now, it’s just for precautionary reasons, and it doesn’t seem to be that serious at the moment. Besides, he has no idea what’s on those medical reports anyway. “I’m not a doctor,” Leyland began to joke. “I know I’ve got a heart, it has a beat,
and that’s about it. But other than that, I don’t know anything about that. … We’re going to take it slow [with Treanor].”
* Leyland stressed he isn’t tipping his hat, and that Zach Miner — Tuesday’s starter — still has as good of a chance as anybody to land that No. 5 spot in the starting rotation. But the skipper did have something interesting to say about the 26-year-old right-hander before his outing: “I think he needs to maybe prepare himself for relief. I’m not talking necessarily about right now. … We know he can start — we think he can start and do a decent job. He hasn’t shown for sure that he can relieve as effective as he should. So he needs to do that. … In his case, I think there will always be a situation where somebody may be looking for a little bit more of an edge from the starter, so he needs to learn how to make the adjustments to pitch out of the bullpen.”
* Tigers left-hander Fu-Te Ni is back from pitching with Chinese Taipei — which lost its only two games — and is scheduled to pitch on Tuesday. Ni gave up a run in 1 1/3 innings in the Classic.
* Leyland and Tony La Russa have always enjoyed a great friendship — ever since La Russa brought him to the big leagues as his third-base coach with the White Sox, in fact. Before the game, the Cardinals’ manager had a little fun with Leyland, sending him a lineup with Cardinals greats likes Ozzie Smith, Mark McGwire, Jim Edmonds and Stan Musial, with Bob Gibson pitching. “It was pretty good,” Leyland joked. “If those guys don’t hit today, I know the world’s coming to an end.”
* Score update: It’s the bottom of the third right now, with the Cardinals leading, 2-1. Chris Duncan hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the first, and Marcus Thames hit a solo shot in the top of the second for Detroit.

— Alden Gonzalez

Beautiful morning in Jupiter

JUPITER, Fla. — It sure feels like baseball weather here at Roger Dean Stadium, as the Cardinals and Tigers are about three hours away from getting going. I’ll be with you guys for one more day, then Jason Beck will jump back in when the Tigers play in Lakeland, Fla., on Wednesday.

Should be interesting to see how Zach Miner pitches today after seeing how well Rick Porcello threw the ball on Monday. That fifth-starter race is definitely heating up.
Here are the lineups:
Will Rhymes, 2B
Gerald Laird, C
Clete Thomas, DH
Marcus Thames, LF
Jeff Larish, RF
Brandon Inge, 3B
Don Kelly, 1B
Brent Clevlen, CF
Ramon Santiago, SS
Starter: Miner

Skip Schumaker, 2B
Chris Duncan, LF
Albert Pujols, 1B
Rick Ankiel, CF
Ryan Ludwick, RF
Khalil Greene, SS
Joe Mather, 3B
Bryan Anderson, C
Tyler Greene, DH
Starter: Kyle Lohse
— Alden Gonzalez

Postgame roster move

The Tigers made the Zach Miner roster move after the game. Jeff Larish was optioned to Triple-A Toledo to make room for Miner.

I’m not on the series at Kansas City, so probably no game blogs. I’ll try to chime in with an update or two over the next few days before I’m back on for the White Sox series next weekend.

Miner to start on Monday, Guillen away

Bonine will be sent to Toledo to start there on Monday. As recently as this afternoon, Miner was scheduled to start for the Hens on Monday until the Tigers made the change. Leyland didn’t want to go into details.

In other news, Carlos Guillen is not available tonight. He’s back in Detroit, where his wife underwent surgery to take care of complications she was suffering after giving birth to their daughter a week and a half ago. Supposedly the surgery went well, thank goodness.

TIGERS (47-47)

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Thames, LF
  4. Ordonez, RF
  5. Cabrera, 1B
  6. Sheffield, DH
  7. Rodriguez, C
  8. Renteria, SS
  9. Inge, 3B

ORIOLES (45-48)

  1. Brian Roberts, 2B
  2. Adam Jones, CF
  3. Nick Markakis, RF
  4. Aubrey Huff, DH
  5. Kevin Millar, 1B
  6. Melvin Mora, 3B
  7. Ramon Hernandez, C
  8. Jay Payton, LF
  9. Brandon Fahey, SS