Things did not go well in the Windy City for the Detroit Tigers over the weekend. The bullpen blew the healthiest of leads in the opener, the weather gave us a thankful reprieve on Saturday, and on Sunday, Reynaldo Lopez and the bullpen struck out about 350 people to lead the White Sox to a series sweep.
Philadelphia, the land of the cheesesteak, the Schmitter, and the soft pretzel can’t get here soon enough. The Tigers kick off a series on Tuesday. If you pay close attention you may see me at the game. Look for the bearded guy in the glasses (i.e. roughly half of Philadelphia’s male population) along the third base line well into his booze and giving Ron Gardenhire the business.
Daniel Norris talks about his friends
Here’s an article that is so splendidly Daniel Norris — the pitcher refers to his pitches like friends. Norris says that if you don’t work on your relationship with them, they eventually get lost over time. He was referring to his secondary stuff, but David Laurila of FanGraphs wonders if the friend Norris might be missing most is his fastball.
In addition to the Norris section at the beginning of Lauila’s article, there’s also some feedback from Ron Gardenhire regarding his thoughts on the retaliatory hit-by-pitch. It will probably not surprise you at all to learn that he has an old school attitude about the practice, saying that baseball corrects itself when guys get too “flamboyant” on home runs.
A case of the elbows
It’s a right UCL strain for Jordan Zimmermann, and he of the double consonants is noticeably frustrated, says Anthony Fenech and his weird little mustache. After feeling discomfort similar to that which had him undergo elbow ligament reconstruction surgery a decade ago, Zimmermann knew something wasn’t right. Head athletic trainer Doug Teter says the Tigers are looking at three to four weeks for him to recover and that they are “going to do it right,” which would be nice. I guess we’ll see how it goes.
After Sunday’s matchup, the Tigers announced that Dustin Peterson has been optioned to Triple-A Toledo. While the corresponding move won’t be made until Tuesday, Anthony Fenech of the Free Press has thoughts.
Peterson will get plenty of time at first base with the Mud Hens, Gardenhire said. Shortstop Jordy Mercer will likely re-join the Tigers in Philadelphia on Tuesday.— Anthony Fenech (@anthonyfenech) April 28, 2019
Dustin Peterson: first baseman of the future.
Calling on Jones
Defensively, JaCoby Jones is exactly what you would ask for in center field, with speed and instincts that allow him to track down a lot of balls. At the plate, he’s a different story. When he makes contact, it’s loud, but it’s the making contact part that is the problem. Since his return to the team in 2019, he is hitting just .146/.212/.229. JaCoby doesn’t need to be an offensive juggernaut in center, but he needs to hit a little bit. The team seems committed to seeing if he can get it together, and in a rebuilding year like this there isn’t much to lose there.
That said, if he doesn’t get his legs under him at the plate, it’s going to be a long season for Jones.
Bring the heat
When it comes to the West Michigan Whitecaps’ most pressing concerns lately, it seems to be the weather. Manager Lance Parrish has said it’s hard to get a read on his guys because the weather has been so cold. When the temperature has started to heat up a little bit, so have the bats. His two top prospects, Wenceel Perez and Parker Meadows, seem to be good indicators of that. As both young players are off to slow starts, Parrish hopes that the increase in temperature as the season moves forward means increased production across the board.
I don’t know what to say about this. Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press says there are a logjam of outfield prospects at Triple-A Toledo. He goes on to cite Daz Cameron and a whole bunch of pretty good but not-so-great guys. If this is a logjam of prospects, I would prefer a clear river with maybe one really super great log in it. More loggin’ and less jammin’.
Around the horn
Baseball should continue being awesome for quite some time
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is here. This is going to be fun.