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Sunday Short Hops - 09/02

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Despite his less-than-stellar effort on Friday, Virgil Vasquez might get one more shot in the Tigers' starting rotation. Why? Because no one else appears to be available. Right now, the Tigers aren't sure who will start on either Wednesday and Thursday for them, as Justin Verlander has been pushed back to Friday to give him an extra day of rest (and to pitch against Wild Card rival Seattle). If Kenny Rogers is ready to go, he'll likely be Wednesday's starter, with Vasquez or Yorman Bazardo going on Thursday.

UPDATE: The Tigers just announced their plans for Wednesday and Thursday. According to Jason Beck, Kenny Rogers will get the start on Wednesday, and Chad Durbin will be Thursday's starter.

So how long will Marcus Thames and Brandon Inge be sitting down? Neither one started yesterday. And their replacements - Ryan Raburn at third base, and Timo Perez in right field - went 4-for-8 against one of the best (though perhaps currently struggling) starting pitchers in the American League.

As much as I'd like to see Thames play (and have made fun of Jim Leyland's preference for Timo Time), Perez has definitely been producing with the bat since being called up from Toledo. And as we discussed briefly in the comments a couple of days ago, it was never clear why Raburn seemed to lose favor with Leyland. When he's in the lineup, he produces.

The manager of Detroit's Double-A club in Erie, Matt Walbeck, has been named Eastern League Manager of the Year. This is probably better for a future blog post or poll question, but I'm curious if Tigers fans think he'll be the manager in Detroit someday. If so, would he succeed Jim Leyland or would a more veteran manager be hired first?

Placido Polanco gets some love from Murray Chass in today's New York Times.

Former Tiger Juan Encarnacion might be facing a career-threatening injury, after taking a foul ball to his left eye on Friday night. Encarnacion was in the on-deck circle, getting ready to pinch-hit, when he was struck by Aaron Miles' foul ball.

An official with the Cardinals said Encarnacion's orbital "exploded," and the sight in that left eye could be in danger. Remember, Encarnacion also took a pitch to that part of his face when he played for the Tigers back in 1999.