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Detroit Tigers Links: Justin Verlander Is OK for His Next Start & Jim Leyland Being Careful with Andy Dirks

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May 10, 2012; Oakland, CA, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) smiles before the game against the Oakland Athletics at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE
May 10, 2012; Oakland, CA, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) smiles before the game against the Oakland Athletics at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE


AL Central Standings

W L PCT GB STRK
Cleveland 19 16 .542 0 Won 1
Detroit 17 18 .485 2 Lost 1
Chicago 17 19 .472 2.5 Won 1
Kansas City 14 20 .411 4.5 Won 3
Minnesota 10 25 .285 9 Lost 1

(updated 5.14.2012 at 11:48 PM EDT)


Justin Verlander should be fine for his next start, Jim Leyland is being cautious with Andy Dirks' hamstring, and Bryce Harper hit his first Major League home run. These stories and another look at Gerald Laird's fall last night in today's Morning Prowl.

Verlander: Callous shouldn’t affect next start - Beck's Blog
Apparently this is something that has "plagued" Verlander (for lack of a better word) in the past. Nobody seems to be worried, so I won't be either.

Detroit Tigers' Jim Leyland doesn't plan to remove Andy Dirks late in game when hamstring is healthy - MLive, James Schmehl
While I understood the reason to have Ramon Santiago hit for Dirks last night -- Matt Thornton is much better against lefthanded hitters -- I wonder whether Leyland will remove Dirks in a tight game where his bat can make a difference.

Old Dogs Fear New Tricks - DesigNate Robertson
Yesterday, Melissa linked Green's article in the Detroit News. Today, we watch Rogo tear it apart. It's a beautiful thing.

Verlander and Smyly Among Early Pitching Leaders - Tiger Tales, Lee Panas
Never mind what Verlander and Smyly are doing; we know they have been pitching well. Check out how many of the names among the AL leaders look familiar. The Tigers have been facing some quality pitching this season, even if the names aren't as well known to some people.

Forget Brandon Inge; letting Placido Polanco go was Tigers' worst mistake - The Detroit News, Terry Foster
It's Kurt's banner day at the News (he will FanShot his article later), and let's just say that the Inge references in this piece make me even happier that we'll see Kurt on a bigger stage from now on.

Around the AL Central:

Rangers Fall to Mighty Royals, Master Chen - Royals Review
"Shockingly--at least as shocking as a single win in a 162-game season can be--the Royals held on to win in Arlington."

Twins Drop Series Opener to the Tribe 5-4 - Twinkie Town
The Twins are now 10-25 on the season.

Game 35: Indians 5, Twins 4 - Let's Go Tribe
"The Indians seemed poised to cruise to a quick 4-1 victory over the Twins, but wildness and a dropped throw made the game a lot more interesting than it should be."

Elsewhere in Baseball:

VIDEO: Bryce Harper launches his first career home run - MLB.com: Multimedia
You knew this was coming.

Pirates Finally Hoping To Catch A Break With Brad Lincoln - Baseball Nation, Grant Brisbee
Lincoln is scheduled to start against the Tigers on Saturday. Currently, he is 3-0 with a 1.33 ERA.

College pitcher Chris Gilmore wins $1 million in MLB 2K12 ‘Perfect Club’ challenge - Big League Stew, David Brown
Arguably more valuable than the giant check Gilmore received is the fact that he got to meet Kate Upton.

Matt Kemp day-to-day after MRI confirms hamstring strain - HardballTalk, D.J. Short
Kemp says that he isn't DL-bound, and we can only hope that this is true.

Roger Clemens' lead accuser Brian McNamee takes stand - ESPN
Honestly, I didn't even read this article. If you're interested in the Roger Clemens trial, feel free to take a look. I couldn't care less, to be perfectly honest.