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News » Detroit Tigers Notes, Quotes 2009-05-11

Detroit Tigers Notes, Quotes 2009-05-11

Detroit Tigers Notes, Quotes 2009-05-11
--RHP Rick Porcello pitched five innings of one-run ball Sunday to earn his third major league victory and second in two starts. Porcello spotted his sinker well again and also had an effective curve plus a good changeup. "It was nice to be able to throw it for strikes," Porcello said. "I felt more comfortable with that than I did with my fastball. I threw it in some key spots and it was a good pitch for me." Porcello allowed five hits but only walked two with five strikeouts. He struck out the side in the fourth after a single and stolen base put a runner on second with nobody out. The second-year pro is having his innings monitored and left with Detroit holding a 5-1 lead. Porcello changes speeds, moves the ball around and looks like a solid addition to Detroit's rotation.

--C Gerald Laird is one of several Detroit players fighting through a hitting slump. The veteran catcher was hitless last week and now has just one hit in his last 32 at-bats after Sunday's 0-for-3. But he contributed to the Tigers' 4-0 victory at Cleveland on Saturday night with a simple groundout. It came with one out and runners at second and third, however, and drove in the first run of the game. "I know I've been struggling," Laird said, "but you have to continue to grind it out and bear down. I was able to muscle it to short to score a run." A prolonged at-bat that included several barely foul liners to right his last time up might be a prelude to the slump's end later this week.

--1B/3B Jeff Larish is seeing the benefits of making a short return to Class AAA Toledo. The reserve corner infielder was Detroit's DH Sunday and hit his second home run of the season after collecting his first major league triple the night before. Larish got a rare start at first base Saturday night with 1B Miguel Cabrera serving as Detroit's designated hitter. "I really think with Larish, you're seeing the benefit of him going to Toledo and getting to bat for two weeks," manager Jim Leyland said. "I know that was part of the reason they sent me down, to get comfortable at the plate and help whenever I can," Larish said.

--LHP Bobby Seay had a tune-up performance Sunday in Cleveland. Seay, who if he's used will be facing the left-handed hitting sluggers in the heart of Minnesota's lineup Tuesday and Wednesday, worked a 1-2-3 seventh against the Indians and then retired the two batters he faced in the eighth before being relieved.

BY THE NUMBERS: 25 -- RBIs by Detroit's two shortstops through Sunday, most of any team in the majors. Backup SS Ramon Santiago had 13 and regular SS Adam Everett 12.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "This is not experimental and it's not developmental. This is the big leagues. He's going to the rotation and we expect everybody there to help us win games. The expectations are no higher on him than anyone else." -- Manager Jim Leyland, on the scheduled return Wednesday to the Detroit rotation of LHP Dontrelle Willis, who has been out all year with an anxiety disorder.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: May 11, 2009

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