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News » Detroit Tigers Inside Pitch 2008-08-29

Detroit Tigers Inside Pitch 2008-08-29

Detroit Tigers Inside Pitch 2008-08-29
Shortstop Edgar Renteria isn't giving the Tigers much help in deciding whether to pick up his $11 million option for the 2009 season.

Renteria, who can be bought out of the option for $3 million, has been erratic both on offense and defense.

A bad hamstring didn't help matters, but he played his way through that and, only 31, he appears adequate defensively, although his range has diminished.

The Tigers could live with that if his hitting were up to previous standards. It hasn't been, though. He's batting .265 with nine home runs and 47 RBIs entering this weekend's series against Kansas City.

Renteria started out hitting the ball well but went into a deep three-month slump, which ended shortly after the All-Star break.

He's been up and down recently. Two weeks ago he had an 11-for-27 week, followed disappointingly by a two-hit week.

Complicating matters is the fact the Tigers have no ready-made replacement in the system. Ramon Santiago offers superb defensive abilities and has done an excellent job as a short-term fill-in, but he's a singles hitter whom the organization feels won't hold up for 140 games.

The most highly regarded minor league shortstop, Cale Iorg, is playing at the high Class A level after two years away from baseball on a Mormon mission trip. His chief objective for this year was simply getting the rust off.

There are always shortstops to be had between seasons, but generally speaking they are all one-way players -- hitters or fielders.

Most speculation has the Tigers giving Renteria the buyout, but that could create more problems than it solves. It might be wiser to keep Renteria for a year and postpone the problem until 2010.

The organization is not revealing its thinking.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: August 29, 2008

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