Righthander Michael Fulmer had successful knee surgery with Dr. James Andrews on Thursday, according to the team. Fulmer will obviously miss the last two weeks of the season, but is expected to be 100 percent recovered by the start of spring training.
While some reports have indicated that Fulmer’s meniscus was “repaired,” this is not the case. The arthroscopic procedure Fulmer underwent simply removed the damaged portion of his meniscus, and “smoothed some of the roughened bone surfaces.” Head athletic trainer Doug Teter described the procedure as a “clean-up,” and said that Fulmer would begin physical therapy immediately.
It’s never great when a player needs surgery, but the relatively minor procedure is probably the best case scenario for Fulmer and the Tigers. A normal recovery from this type of meniscus surgery — a meniscectomy, for those well-versed in medical terminology — is six to eight weeks, depending on the patient. Barring any post-operative complications, Fulmer should be more than ready for action next spring.
Have a day, Christin Stewart
If you didn’t watch Thursday’s Tigers win over the Kansas City Royals, you might want to find a recording. Christin Stewart, the Tigers’ No. 6 prospect according to MLB Pipeline, hit the first two home runs of his career en route to an 11-8 Tigers victory.
Small sample size alert, but Stewart is hitting .256/.370/.436 in 11 games with the Tigers.
Do you like bad takes?
Then Hall of Famer (and former Tigers prospect, and Michigan native) John Smoltz has plenty of them for you.
Smoltz wants to eliminate the shift (“I think it’s single-handedly killing the game), curtail the relentless use of relievers, stop the exploitation of the disabled list, but most of all, revolutionize the schedule.
Smoltz proposes that MLB adopt a split-season schedule, just as they do in the minor leagues, in a move that he believes will create dramatic division races again, reduce the number of teams tanking for draft picks, and make baseball great again in September.
Yeah, I’m gonna go ahead and disagree with all of this.
The 2003 Tigers are safe
Do you remember those stories about the 1972 Miami Dolphins popping champagne every time NFL teams lose a game? I’m not sure what the opposite of that is, but the 2003 Tigers are still the worst team in American League history after the Baltimore Orioles won their 44th game of the season on Wednesday.
Congrats to the Orioles for not being the worst American League team ever— Bless You Boys (@blessyouboys) September 20, 2018
The O’s still need to go 6-4 over their final 10 games to avoid becoming the first team since the ‘03 Tigers to win fewer than 50 games, but at least they won’t be the worst ever.
Let’s go Mets (and other bad teams)!
The lowly New York Mets beat the slightly-less-lowly Washington Nationals on Thursday, ensuring they could finish no worse than 71-91. This is significant, because it ensures the Tigers will have a top-10 pick in the 2019 MLB draft. Detroit is currently sitting in the No. 6 spot, but could still end up anywhere between No. 3 and No. 10.
Tigers fans should now shift to rooting for the Toronto Blue Jays (and everyone else on that list, really). If the Jays win one more game, the Tigers jump up two spots to No. 8 or better.
Around the horn
Does Dave Dombrowski have a bullpen problem? Eno Sarris investigates. Bullpen issues or not, Dombrowski’s Red Sox clinched the AL East on Thursday. There’s now just one division race remaining. More teams are using the Opener now. Grant Brisbee writes about baseball. The Tigers are hiring, if you want a job in baseball and don’t want to get rich.
Baseball is awesome, but Boston is weird
The Red Sox might want to get in touch with these guys today.