DETROIT -- Tyler Collins is no longer with the major league roster. The Detroit Tigers announced on Wednesday that they had optioned him to Triple-A Toledo with closer Francisco Rodriguez returning from the family medical emergency leave list. K-Rod had been away from the team for an undisclosed "personal" matter since April 24.
The Tigers' roster was already full, so they were going to have to send someone down to the minors regardless. However, the decision to send Collins to Toledo comes two days after he lost a flyout in the nighttime lights and misplayed it.
As a result, a run scored, the fans booed, and Collins flipped the crowd off. Detroit went on to win that game, but the first win in five games was overshadowed by the obscene gesture by Collins. It didn't help that he mouthed a horrible phrase to the crowd while flipping them off.
After the game manager Brad Ausmus addressed Collins' behavior, and stated that he'd also discussed it with Collins mid-game. For his part, Collins apologized afterwards and was visibly shaken up when addressing the media -- a contrast to his typical behavior.
When Monday rolled around, Collins was not in the lineup and the Major League Baseball Players Association said they were looking into the incident. It was later decided that no suspension would be served. On Wednesday, the announcement was made that Collins was optioned to the Mud Hens.
Ausmus said the decision was made based on Collins' lack of offense combined with the need to send someone down regardless. He added it was not because of Collins' actions the other night.
While with the Tigers this year, Collins played in 10 total games and 20 plate appearances. He bat a mere .100/.100/.150 with only two hits and a double. After drawing the ire of Tigers fans everywhere, there's sure to be no love lost between Collins and the fans.