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News » Detroit Tigers Roster Report 2009-04-09


Detroit Tigers Roster Report 2009-04-09


Detroit Tigers Roster Report 2009-04-09
The Tigers neared the end of spring training the same as they entered -- with unanswered questions about the state of the pitching staff. After RHPs Justin Verlander, Edwin Jackson and Armando Galarraga, the club had no rotation candidate without significant question marks. RHP Jeremy Bonderman (injured), LHP Dontrelle Willis (control problems, anxiety disorder), LHP Nate Robertson (no fastball, inconsistent slider) and rookie RHP Rick Porcello (great stuff, no experience) all had issues. The bullpen was also unsettled from top to bottom. The defense will be improved with the addition of SS Adam Everett and the return to third of Brandon Inge, and the club should score enough runs. Robertson showed late signs of adapting to a Kenny Rogers style of pitching, which would help a great deal. Porcello and fellow rookie RHP Ryan Perry made the club.

PLAYER NEWS:

--1B Miguel Cabrera hit a three-run home run, a solo shot and a single Wednesday night to continue his torrid start with seven hits in his first 10 at-bats this season. Cabrera lined his first home run to left with two teammates on base in the first, drilled his second to deep center field in the fifth to give Detroit a 4-1 lead. His single was a liner over shortstop.

--RF Josh Anderson showed some defensive skills Wednesday night in his second start of the season. Anderson got a start in right field so Magglio Ordonez could DH. Toronto loaded the bases in the first, and Anderson came in for a medium-depth flyball, gathering himself and threw a good one-hopper to the plate for an inning-ending double play. He was advertised as a good defensive outfielder at all three spots, and so far he has lived up to that.

--3B Brandon Inge seems to have found a comfort zone with his return to third base and in the adjustments he's made in his batting style. Inge made a real sharp play in the first inning Wednesday night, turning a slow roller to third into a forceout at home with the bases loaded and nobody out. Then he choked up on the bat with two strikes in the sixth and slammed his third home run in Detroit's first three games. Research to 1954 showed Inge to be the first Tiger to hit a home run in each of Detroit's first three games. "It feels great right now," Inge said. "I'm happy to say the work we put in is working. I'm just taking an approach right now, not worried about mechanics." Inge also turned a sharp grounder down the third base line into a forceout at second in the third inning. Both of Inge's strong defensive plays were followed by Detroit double plays that choked off Toronto rallies.

--RHP Ryan Perry, Detroit's top draft pick last June, made his major league debut Wednesday night, pitching a scoreless eighth inning. Perry was not able to throw his slider for strikes, but his mid-90s fastball made up for it. He recorded his first strikeout on a 3-and-2, 96 mph fastball that was outside the strike zone, but RF Alex Rios was unable to hold up. Manager Jim Leyland had Perry ticketed to pitch in his pregame plans, knowing starting RHP Zach Miner would not go the distance.

--LHP Bobby Seay retired four consecutive batters, striking out two left-handers, to preserve a 5-1 lead for RHP Zach Miner. Seay came in with two on and two outs in the sixth and fanned LF Travis Snider before working a 1-2-3 seventh. Seay was working his second straight game, so he probably will be held out Thursday afternoon.

--RHP Fernando Rodney worked a 1-2-3 ninth in a non-save situation and looked much sharper than last season when he struggled as the Tigers' closer the last two months of the season. Rodney was told in the spring to junk his slider, which he tried to resurrect when he was struggling last year, and he has gone back to using his fastball as his primary pitch. Rodney had trouble commanding his fastball last year, so hitters started sitting on his excellent changeup -- and hitting it. Wednesday he relied on his fastball, which was in the mid-90s.

--INF Ramon Santiago will replace 2B Placido Polanco in the starting lineup Thursday after playing for SS Adam Everett on Wednesday night. Santiago sliced a sharp single to deep short his first time up Wednesday, the sort of thing he needs to do to be an effective offensive player.

--C Matt Treanor was scheduled to start in place of C Gerald Laird on Thursday afternoon under manager Jim Leyland's plan to give his regulars rest and play his bench as much as possible. Leyland will typically rest at least one regular when day games follow night contests. The fact a left-hander was pitching Thursday also figured into the catching equation because Laird hits left-handed and Treanor bats right-hander.

--UT Jeff Larish was not scheduled to start any of the four games at Toronto, but manager Jim Leyland said he probably would start Friday as the designated hitter in Detroit's home opener against Texas.

MEDICAL WATCH:

LHP Dontrelle Willis (anxiety disorder) went on the 15-day disabled list March 29. The disorder was diagnosed through blood tests, and there was no timetable for his return. Willis, for his part, didn't understand the diagnosis and said he felt fine.

RHP Joel Zumaya (right shoulder soreness) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 27. He will remain in camp to work minor league games until he shows he can pitch back-to-back games successfully.

RHP Jeremy Bonderman (right rib removal, blood clot surgery in June 2008) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 30. He won't return until he nudges his fastball back up 90 mph on a consistent basis.

ROTATION:

1. RHP Justin Verlander

2. RHP Edwin Jackson

3. RHP Armando Galarraga

4. RHP Rick Porcello

5. RHP Zach Miner

BULLPEN:

RHP Brandon Lyon (closer)

RHP Fernando Rodney

LHP Bobby Seay

RHP Eddie Bonine

RHP Juan Rincon

LHP Nate Robertson

RHP Ryan Perry

LINEUP:

1. CF Curtis Granderson

2. 2B Placido Polanco

3. RF Magglio Ordonez

4. 1B Miguel Cabrera

5. LF Carlos Guillen

6. DH Marcus Thames

7. C Gerald Laird

8. 3B Brandon Inge

9. SS Adam Everett

RESERVES:

C Matt Treanor

INF Jeff Larish

INF Ramon Santiago

OF Josh Anderson


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 9, 2009

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