Although Sunday afternoon’s game may have felt like it started sometime in the late 1990’s, they did manage to squeak it all in to one day. It is Monday, a new week is upon us, and it will be the first one this season where the Tigers are coming off of a series win on the road, and their first winning road trip. Taking two games out of three from the Minnesota Twins over the weekend and six out of their last 10 may feel good, but does it do anything for the team’s stance on selling? They are still more than six games back in the division so it’s doubtful, but maybe today’s links can offer us some insight.
Pull the van over
Just one inning into a rehab start for the Toledo Mud Hens, Daniel Norris suffered a setback. It appears as though he re-aggravated his groin injury, and at the moment it’s not certain how this will effect the timetable for his return. For now Norris is gonna have to just keep livin’ on the disabled list.
Shortly after conclusion of Sunday’s marathon game the Tigers announced the following:
Prior to tomorrow's game, the #Tigers will recall RHP Drew VerHagen from Triple-A Toledo.— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) July 23, 2017
It appears as though the team prefers to make a move to add some depth to the bullpen. Considering VerHagen’s stats at Toledo this year it might be best for everyone if they don’t ever have to use him. That 3.98 walks per nine looks almost as bad as the the 4.64 ERA. Meanwhile Jim “The Deuce” Adduci will make the short trip back to Toledo. File this one under moves I don’t understand.
Speaking of the bullpen, George Sipple of the Free Press wrote a little something about pitcher Bruce Rondon and how effectively and how often he is using his slider this season to (mostly) great success.
Brad thinks what?
Manager Brad Ausmus said he wouldn’t be surprised if the Tigers are done dealing this season. After a questionable return on J.D. Martinez, half the league is in on Justin Wilson. Trade speculation is swirling around the likes of Ian Kinsler, Justin Verlander, and Alex Avila, and some dude in Philly has a bad take on a possible Fulmer trade. But Ausmus is all ready to be done. I’ll hazard a guess that he’s the only person who is thinking this way.
Bringing the wood
It’s no secret that third baseman Nicholas Castellanos has been, is, and will continue to be nothing short of a trash fire on defense. That’s a given. Earlier this season, although he was hitting everything wicked hard, he wasn’t showing the type of offensive production required to buoy such terrible defensive play. There were some premature rumblings about considering if he was worth keeping around. Fast forward to now, and the offense has come to life for Castellanos to the tune of a .304 average and a .946 OPS since the beginning of June. One of the more interesting aspects of his offensive surge is the triple — Castellanos leads the American League with seven. Ryan Ford of The Detroit Free Press takes a closer look at Castellanos and the triple.
Another guy with a bat that has proven unexpectedly proficient is everybody’s new favorite Tiger, center fielder Mikie Mahtook. There may be some changes to his swing to thank for his .288 average and .184 ISO.
I don’t want to speak too early on this one, but another guy to look at is outfielder Alex Presley. In the limited time he’s seen this year he’s managed to hit his way to a .329 average.
Bat flip corner
If you’re gonna bat flip a ground-rule double, I guess you should make it look good.
Odubel could teach a class on the art of the #BatFlip. pic.twitter.com/SGKslvsKm2— MLB (@MLB) July 23, 2017
For your free time
The San Francisco Giants have officially stopped believing. Baltimore Orioles closer — and Justin Wilson trade market diminisher — Zach Britton records his record setting 55th consecutive save. The White Sox and their obsession with the bunt gives you more reason to hate them, as if you needed any further motivation. Noah Syndergaard is asking a variation of a popular question: Should I even lift, bro? Check out Zack Cozart and his trusty donkey.
Baseball is awesome
Aaron Judge continues his all-out assault on baseballs. Poor little fellas.
.@TheJudge44 nearly leaves Safeco Field. Seriously.— MLB (@MLB) July 22, 2017
He is now alone atop the @MLB HR leaderboard with 31. https://t.co/OK5MEwZSZh pic.twitter.com/eGKxMjhfDJ