TigsTown Transaction Blog: Updated 12/21/09

TigsTown.com keeps you informed with the latest moves in Detroit and on the farm. Stay current with all the roster movement and personnel decisions with the TigsTown Transaction Blog.


Traded Dusty Ryan (C) to the San Diego Padres for a player to be named or cash considerations.

Analysis: Most of the Tigers moves of this nature end up being completed with cash, and I don't expect this move to end any differently. This move clears the way for Jordan Newton to be promoted to Erie for a true test of his glove and bat, while one of Alex Avila or Robinzon Diaz and Max St. Pierre will likely hold down the catching duties in Toledo.

Posted by: Mark, 12/21/09


Signed Phil Dumatrait (LHP)

Signed Ryan Ketchner (LHP)

Signed Kory Casto (INF/OF)

Signed Jason Stokes (1B)

Signed Andy Bouchie (C)

Freddy Dolsi (RHP) was claimed off waivers by the Chicago White Sox

Analysis: Ketchner showed well with the organization in a brief stint last year after coming back from injury, and it is no surprised they opted to bring him back. He's still shooting to be one of the only deaf pitchers in MLB history, and if his stuff continues to present like it did last year, he might just do it. Dumatrait is a solid lefty arm and a nice emergency option to keep in Toledo. The signing of Dumatrait, along with Ketchner, Enrique Gonzalez, and Ruddy Lugo, means there's like to be some serious competition in spring training for Triple-A roster spots. Casto is another guy brought in for competition at Toledo, and his versatility could give him an upper hand, as he's experienced at first base, third base, and both outfield corners, though he is a natural third baseman; a glaring hole on the projected Toledo roster right now.

Posted by: Mark, 12/16/09


Signed Ramon Santiago (INF) to a two-year contract

Analysis: Signing Santiago to a two-year deal seems a bit odd on the surface, but for short money and a known commodity, it gives the Tigers the assurance he will be around to help the next two years. He should provide more than adequate insurance for Adam Everett and Scott Sizemore in 2010 and 2011.

Posted by: Mark, 12/16/09


Signed Enrique Gonzalez (RHP)

Analysis: Gonzalez is your pretty mundane mid-20's minor league righty that can fill a swing man role at Triple-A or Double-A. The Tigers have had plenty of these guys over the years, and it is just as likely he'll serve as an extra minor league spring training arm, and then be looking for work once opening day rolls around.

Posted by: Mark, 12/13/09


Traded Curtis Granderson (OF) to the New York Yankees, and Edwin Jackson (RHP) to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Received Max Scherzer (RHP) and Daniel Schlereth (LHP) from Arizona, and Austin Jackson (OF) and Phil Coke (LHP) from the Yankees.

Designated Dusty Ryan (C) for assignment

Designated Freddy Dolsi (RHP) for assignment

Signed Ruddy Lugo (RHP)

Analysis: The deal has been talked about ad nauseum for the last 24 hours, so check out the front page at TigsTown.com for Paul Wezner's complete analysis of the deal.

Posted by: Mark, 12/08/09


Signed Robinzon Diaz (C)

Analysis: Signing Diaz isn't a bad depth move by the Tigers. He's certainly a better depth option than Dane Sardinha. There are still rumblings that Gerald Laird may be on the block, so Diaz may get a larger role in Detroit than we imagine right now; but that is yet to be seen.

Posted by: Mark, 12/08/09


Sign Adam Everett (SS)

Trade Clay Rapada (LHP) to Texas for a PTBNL

Out-righted Zach Simons (RHP)

Signed Brad Thomas (LHP)

Analysis: Rapada had appeared to fall out of favor with Manager Jim Leyland, and a move to new pastures may help him, as he has the ability to be solid MLB LOOGY. Early returns I'm hearing indicate the PTBNL will be cash. The out-righting of Simons is slightly peculiar, but could be an indicator of more moves to come in the very near future. Thomas is a veteran (32-year old) lefty that has spent the last two years closing games in Korea, while also pitching for the Australian National Team. He should provide some innings in spring training, and could be a good Double- or Triple-A bullpen arm.

UPDATE: Everett is back in an unsurprising move; it's only one-year and for a reported $1.55 million. We'll again have strong defense at short.

Posted by: Mark, 12/07/09


Offered arbitration to Brandon Lyon (RHP)

Offered arbitration to Fernando Rodney (RHP)

Analysis: A good move by the Tigers as they will either bring the players back into the fold, or receive a couple of compensation picks instead; neither of which is a bad thing for the club. The decision not to offer arbitration to Placido Polanco is also a good one, considering the presence of Scott Sizemore, and the likelihood that Polanco may be on the verge of a decline. There was no question the Tigers were not going to offer arbitration to Washburn, Huff, and Everett.

Posted by: Mark, 12/01/09


Purchased the contracts of Scott Sizemore (2B), Ryan Strieby (1B), Brennan Boesch (OF), and Audy Ciriaco (SS), and added them to the 40-man roster.

Analysis: Nothing terribly surprising here. The only mild surprise is the addition of Ciriaco, but when you consider his ceiling and what some see as some break throughs in the second half of the season, it makes sense.

Posted by: Mark, 11/20/09


Ronnie Bourquin (3B) suspended 50 games

Analysis: Bourquin has been suspended after testing positive for an amphetamine, in violation of baseball's minor league drug program. Bourquin will serve his suspension across the first 50 games again next year. Bourquin just finished a season that put him back on the map a bit as a prospect, hitting well for the first time since his debut season with Oneonta.

Posted by: Mark, 11/19/09


Signed Angel Carreno (RHP)

Signed Francisco Contreras (RHP)

Signed Luis Hidalgo (RHP)

Signed Benny Paulino (RHP)

Re-signed Macay McBride (LHP)

Re-signed Josh Rainwater (RHP)

Re-signed Max St. Pierre (C)

Re-signed Santo De Leon (3B)

Analysis: We are still tracking down the details on the new Latin American signings, so check back with TigsTown.com for all the details on the Tigers newest prospects.

Posted by: Mark, 11/09/09


Granted free agency to Marcus Thames (OF)

Granted free agency to Matt Treanor (C)

Out-righted Michael Hollimon (INF) to Toledo

Activated Joel Zumaya (RHP) from the 60-day DL

Activated Jeff Larish (1B) from the 60-day DL

Re-signed Jay Sborz (RHP)

Purchased the contract of Jay Sborz (RHP) and added him to the 40-man roster

Analysis: Sborz addition is the only real shocker here, but he has been improving, has a big fastball, and could help in the bullpen in 2010. Hollimon's injury issues leave him at a career crossroads, as 2010 might be his last chance to get back in the organization's good graces.

Posted by: Mark, 11/06/09


Fernando Rodney (RHP), Adam Everett (SS), Placido Polanco (2B), Aubrey Huff (1B), and Jarrod Washburn (LHP) filed for free agency

Analysis: No big shock here, as all of them were expected to file, and Brandon Lyon (RHP) is expected to file as well. The Tigers still have a negotiating window here, but odds are no better than 50-50 that any of these guys will be returning.

Posted by: Mark, 11/05/09


Granted Mike Hessman (3B) free agency

Analysis: Hessman has been a mainstay at third and DH for the 'Hens over the last few years, but there is little room for him in the big leagues, and at his age, he is wise to start searching for one more opportunity at the MLB level.

Posted by: Mark, 10/26/09


Released Luis Grullon (1B)

Released Marcos Nunez (RHP)

Granted Dane Sardinha (C) free agency

Analysis: Both Grullon and Nunez have stagnated some since coming stateside, and neither has displayed the promise some originally thought they may have.

Posted by: Mark, 10/10/09


Signed Hua-Wei Lo (LHP)

Analysis: Lo is an 18-year old lefty that stand 5-10 with a thin frame. He is very new to pitching, but works in the 87-90 range, touching 91 on occasion. He also features a curveball and a change-up, with the curveball flashing as an above-average pitch at times. Lo is very raw, and may take time to develop, but his six-figure signing bonus signals the Tigers confidence in his potential.

Posted by: Mark, 09/29/09


Recalled Clay Rapada (LHP) to Detroit

Re-signed Wilfredo Ramirez (LHP)

Analysis: The status of Bobby Seay is still uncertain, and Rapada will give Jim Leyland another lefty in the bullpen until everything is cleared up. I wouldn't expect him to get high leverage innings, but he'll be handy. The Wilfredo Ramirez move is about ten days old, but the Tigers had to re-sign him to get him stateside for Instructs.

Posted by: Mark, 09/25/09


Activated Alfredo Figaro (RHP) from the 15-day DL (right wrist sprain)

Analysis: There have been rumblings of Figaro's return for a few days, and I think it is safe to say this was cemented by Washburn's implosion last night. Between Washburn's balky knee, Robertson's own problems, and Galarraga's tender elbow, the Tigers are in dire need of a starter. Now healthy again, Figaro was pitching very well for Erie in the season's final weeks, and he has enough stuff to be the guy to truly help the Tigers down the stretch.

Posted by: Mark, 09/16/09


Activated Casey Crosby (LHP) from 7-day DL (finger)

Re-assigned Melvin Mercedes (RHP) from West Michigan to GCL

Analysis: This is a very predictable move for the Tigers. Crosby is slated to kick off the 'Caps series against the Great Lakes Loons tonight, and Mercedes, while very talented, is not ready to compete at this level or in this atmosphere. It was a wonderful test for a young man with a great work ethic, and I expect him to learn a lot from the brief experience in West Michigan. Don't be shocked if he's back there to start next year.

Posted by: Mark, 09/09/09


Released Franklin Felida (C)

Released Domingo Gonzalez (3B)

Released Santo Heredia (OF)

Released Ivan Espinoza (OF)

Released Wondy De Los Santos (UT)

Released Ramon Franco (RHP)

Released Carlos Alvarez (RHP)

Released Juan Lozano (LHP)

Released Eduardo Gonzalez (RHP)

Released Jose Encarnacion (RHP)

Released Billis Andujar (RHP)

Sergio Collado (RHP) Retired

Winter Kery (RHP) Retired

Signed Johan Belisario (RHP)

Signed David Lizardo (INF)

Analysis: Nothing really shocking on this front, as many of the players released have either had injury problems or have yet to perform as professionals. We'll have more on Belisario and Lizardo very soon.

Posted by: Mark, 09/08/09


Activated Bryan Pounds (3B) from the 7-day DL (heel)

Re-assigned Michael Rockett (OF) from Oneonta to Toledo

Purchased the contract of Donnie Kelly (UT) from Toledo

Moved Jeff Larish (1B) from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL (wrist)

Placed Casey Crosby (LHP) on the 7-day DL (finger)

Analysis: With Kelly headed to Detroit, Rockett gives Toledo an extra reserve outfielder for the final games of the season. Pounds return from the DL could be a big boost to the 'Caps playoff drive.

Posted by: Mark, 09/05/09


Re-assigned Lester Oliveros (RHP) from Lakeland to Toledo

Placed Brendan Wise (RHP) on the temporarily inactive list

Acitaved Luis Marte (RHP) from the 7-day DL (shoulder)

Analysis: Nothing of major note here. Oliveros going to Toledo for one game means little, but it is a nice token move for a pitcher that has turned in a solid season at Lakeland. It also likely has off-season roster implications in terms of protection rights for the minor league Rule 5 draft. Marte's shoulder has been feeling better, but he desparately needs the off-season to rest. Don't be shocked if he's forced to the bullpen next season.

Posted by: Mark, 09/04/09


Placed Billy Alvino (C) on the 7-day DL (wrist)

Re-assigned Julio Rodriguez (C) from GCL to Lakeland

Analysis: Not a big news move but a nice opportunity for Rodriguez if he can get a few at-bats against some more advanced pitching. Still tracking down word on Alvino's injury, and we'll let you know as soon as we know.

Posted by: Mark, 09/03/09


Re-assigned Michael Gosse (INF) from West Michigan to Toledo

Re-assigned Melvin Mercedes (RHP) from GCL to West Michigan

Re-assigned Keith Hernandez (C) from Oneonta to Toledo

Activated Andy Dirks (OF) from the 7-day DL (wrist)

Re-assigned Audy Ciriaco (SS) from Lakeland to Toledo

Francisco Martinez (3B) from GCL to Lakeland

Activated Jeremy Bonderman (RHP) from the 15-day DL (shoulder)

Placed Michael Hollimon (INF) on the 60-day DL

Re-called Wilkin Ramirez (OF) from Toledo to Detroit

Re-called Casey Fien (RHP) from Toledo to Detroit

Re-called Eddie Bonine (RHP) from Toledo to Detroit

Re-called Dusty Ryan (C) from Toledo to Detroit

Purchased the contract of Brent Dlugach (SS) from Toledo

Analysis: These moves will be formally executed in time for Tuesday's game, as rosters expand September 1st. There is really nothing shocking here, as Bonderman has been expected back, and the re-called players were all near givens. The addition of Dlugach provides him an excellent opportunity to showcase himself for a possible job in 2010. He has had a breakthrough campaign in 2009, and if he shows well down the stretch, there is an opening up for grabs on next year's roster.

Posted by: Mark, 08/31/09


Re-assigned Ryan Ketchner (LHP) from Lakeland to Toledo

Re-assigned LJ Gagnier (RHP) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Nolan Moody (RHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Re-assigned Rayni Guichardo (LHP) from GCL to Lakland

Analysis: The key move here is LJ Gagnier to Erie, as he will likely help slot in the place vacated by Thad Weber. Gagnier was a strong candidate for Erie during spring training, and some in the organization were disappointed he didn't get there earlier in the year.

Posted by: Mark, 08/30/09


Placed Pat Stanley (RHP) on the 7-day DL (shoulder)

Re-assigned Nolan Cain (RHP) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Miguel Majia (RHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Placed Ryan Strieby (1B/LF) on 7-day DL

Placed Cody Satterwhite (RHP) on 7-day DL

Analysis: Douglas didn't even make the first pitch in his start a while ago, and missed another as his shoulder did not progress. Jared Gayhart has taken his slot in the rotation and done very well so far. Cain has moved quickly, and he should. He is an experienced, collegiate arm that has shown he can compete at the highest level; on a national stage with LSU. I love the aggressiveness with him.

Posted by: Mark, 08/28/09


Activated Brandon Douglas (2B) from the 7-day DL (groin)

Re-assigned Luis Palacios (INF) from West Michigan to Oneonta

Analysis: Douglas' return is timely for a 'Caps squad that is poised for the playoffs. Hopefully a fully healed groin will allow him to actually slug the ball again, something he hasn't done in months.

Posted by: Mark, 08/27/09


Optioned Armando Galarraga (RHP) from Detroit to Toledo

Activated Nate Robertson (LHP) from th 15-day DL

Analysis: The formal activation of Robertson may not happen for a day or two, but he will likely start Saturday for the Tigers. The team is in a situation where they have to get something from that fifth starter spot down the stretch, and Robertson is the next in line to give it a go. I have a hunch that the inflammation experienced by Galarraga is a bit of a stretch, otherwise they likely would have just DL'd him.

Posted by: Mark, 08/26/09


Re-assigned Adrian Casanova (C) from Lakeland to Erie

Placed Max St. Pierre (C) on the 7-day DL (hand)

Re-assigned Billy Alvino (C) from GCL to Lakeland

Activated LJ Gagnier (RHP) from temporarily inactive list

Re-assigned Austin Wood (LHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Re-assigned Richard Zumaya (RHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Analysis: The LFT roster has been pretty sparse lately, and this series of moves finally gets them back to a full 25-man roster. While Alvino and Zumaya are just good candidates to come across the parking lot, Wood is an '09 draftee with substantial collegiate experience at a big program, and this should be a strong test for him.

Posted by: Mark, 08/25/09


Re-assigned Jade Todd (LHP) from GCL to West Michigan

Re-assigned Richard Zumaya (RHP) from Lakeland to GCL

Re-assigned Max Leon (UT) from Lakeland to Toledo

Re-assigned Miguel Mejia (RHP) from Lakeland to GCL

Analysis: Todd and Leon can help both teams down the stretch as they push for the playoffs; though Toledo's chances are slim.

Posted by: Mark, 08/23/09


Re-assigned Miguel Majia (RHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Activated Matt Hoffman (LHP) from 7-day DL

Posted by: Mark, 08/22/09


Re-assigned Jordan Cruz (OF) from GCL to Lakeland

Placed LJ Gagnier on the temporarily inactive list

Re-assigned Richard Zumaya (RHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Posted by: Mark, 08/21/09


Lost Chris Lambert (RHP) on waivers to Baltimore

Signed Miguel Mejia (RHP)

Assigned Miguel Majia (RHP) to GCL

Placed Andy Dirks (OF) on 7-day DL (wrist)

Re-assigned Chris White (OF) from Lakeland to Erie

Posted by: Mark, 08/20/09


Optioned Eddie Bonine (RHP) from Detroit to Toledo

Posted by: Mark, 08/19/09


Traded Brett Jacobson (RHP) to Baltimore for Aubrey Huff (1B)

Signed Jacob Turner (RHP)

Signed Andrew Oliver (LHP)

Signed Daniel Fields (SS)

Signed James Robbins (1B)

Placed Nick Cassavechia (RHP) on 7-day DL

Designated Chris Lambert (RHP) for assignment

Posted by: Mark, 08/17/09


Activated Jade Todd (LHP) from 7-day DL

Re-assigned Jade Todd (LHP) from West Michigan to GCL

Posted by: Mark, 08/16/09


Re-assigned Zach Simons (RHP) from Erie to Toledo

Activated Cody Satterwhite (RHP) from 7-day disabled list

Placed Ryan Roberson (1B) on the 7-day DL (left wrist)

Activated Jade Todd (LHP) from the 7-day DL

Re-assigned Jade Todd (LHP) from West Michigan to GCL

Analysis: The return of Satterwhite is encouraging after he's missed the past couple weeks, meanwhile Simons gets to go back to Toledo where he should benefit from higher level in competition. Roberson's spot is taken by Simons after Roberson fractured his wrist earlier in the week.

Posted by: Wez, 08/15/09


Re-assigned Ronnie Bourquin (1B) from Erie to West Michigan

Placed Brandon Douglas (2B) on disabled list

Signed Jason Waddell (LHP) and assigned him to Erie

Optioned Freddy Dolsi (RHP) from Toledo

Recalled Eddie Bonine (RHP) from Toledo

Analysis: Ronnie Bourquin was hit by the numbers crunch - with the presence of Michael Bertram and the return of Ryan Strieby, Bourquin became the odd man out. The swap of Dolsi for Bonine is manager Jim Leyland's latest attempt to find anyone that can pitch out of the Tigers' bullpen and give them effective relief - Casey Fien, Chris Lambert and Dolsi all failed the test.

Posted by: Wez, 08/13/09


Activated Ryan Strieby (1B/OF) from the 7-day DL (wrist)

Re-assigned Hernan Perez (SS) from GCL to Lakeland

Optioned Chris Lambert (RHP) from Detroit to Toledo

Recalled Freddy Dolsi (RHP) from Toledo

Analysis: Strieby's been undergoing a different treatment from the cortizone shots he had been receiving, and the wrist supposedly feels well enough for him to return to action. There still may be more treatment (surgery?) requrid this off-season, but those details are still being finalized. For now, I'm sure Tom Brookens and his team are happy to have Strieby back in the lineup for the playoff push.

Posted by: Mark, 08/11/09


Placed Chris Carlson (1B) on the 7-day DL (wrist)

Re-assigned Drew Graham from GCL to Lakeland

Placed Matt Hoffman (LHP) on 7-day DL

Analysis: Carlson will be out for the rest of the year after breaking his wrist in Wednesday's game. The injury happened during a collision on a bunt play, and he underwent surgery this afternoon. Another injury in Lakeland is far less serious, as Matt Hoffman should be back in 7-10 days after leaving his last outing with a minor arm injury

Posted by: Mark, 08/06/09


Activated Max Leon (IF) from the Erie disabled list and transferred to Lakeland

Josh Kite (LHP) Retired

Placed Cody Satterwhite (RHP) on Erie disabled list - Retroactive to August 3

Transferred Zach Simons (RHP) from Toledo to Erie

Transferred Max St-Pierre (C) from Toledo to Erie

Placed Bryan Pounds (3B) on West Michigan disabled list - Rectroactive to August 4 Placed Scott Green (RHP) on 7-day DL

Re-assigned Luis Palacios (INF) from Oneonta to West Michigan

Analysis: Lots more moves needed as the Tigers try and work out all the necessary shuffling with the Avila and Lambert promotions. St-Pierre had been hot lately for Toledo but with Ryan returning, he'd likely be limited in at-bats, and Erie needs an everyday catcher. The organization is still being mum on Satterwhite's injury, but as of now, it only appears to be a minor issue.

Posted by: Wez, 08/05/09


Optioned Dusty Ryan (C) to Toledo

Optioned Wilkin Ramirez (OF) to Toledo

Recalled Chris Lambert (RHP) from Toledo to Detroit

Purchased the contract of Alex Avila (C) from Erie

Analysis: The Avila move is a bold one by the Tigers, but he gives them a consistent and pure offensive talent behind the dish. It will be interesting to see how much he plays with Laird being the defensive stallwart he's been, and Avila being a work in progress behind the plate. If Guillen begins to get time in left field, don't be shocked if Avila gets some ABs at DH as well. Lambert's recall is a bit curious, but he gives them another pitcher capable of going multiple innings, which could be valuable backing up Galarraga and Porcello.

Posted by: Mark, 08/04/09


Activated Chao-Ting Tang (OF) from 7-day DL (facial fracture)

Re-assigned Chao-Ting Tang (OF) from West Michigan to GCL

Optioned Casey Fien (RHP) to Toledo

Recalled Wilkin Ramirez (OF) from Toledo to Detroit

Analysis: Tang is finally back in action after taking a double-play throw to the face in a game earlier this year. His assignment to the GCL may be short-lived if he hits well, but at this point its just about getting him back on the field and used to playing again.

UPDATE: Ramirez has been red hot again, and he could be a spark in the outfield if the can keep that going in Detroit. Fien pitched well in his time up with the Tigers, and he'll be back soon enough.

Posted by: Mark, 08/04/09


Signed Edgar Corcino (3B/C)

Analysis: Corcino, thought to be a pretty easy sign, is finally under contract and should start playing soon. TigsTown's Jason Avery reports that the Tigers plan to move him behind the plate, which could be a good move for his prospect status..

Posted by: Mark, 08/03/09


Activated Josh Kite (LHP) from the 7-day DL (shoulder)

Analysis: With Cody Satterwhite hurting in Erie, Kite's return is timely, giving Manager Tom Brookens another reliable arm in the bullpen. He should be monitored closely to make sure he is beyond the shoulder woes.

Posted by: Mark, 08/02/09


Placed Jeff Gerbe on the 7-day DL (shoulder)

Re-assigned Jose Diaz (RHP) from GCL to Oneonta

Re-assigned Mark Sorensen (RHP) from West Michigan to Lakeland

Re-assigned Adam Wilk (LHP) from Oneonta to West Michigan

Re-assigned Gary Perinar (RHP) from Oneonta to GCL

Re-assigned Jose Siso (LHP) from GCL to Oneonta

Analysis: Coach Howard Bushong has discussed with me on numerous occasions the struggles Gerbe has had in gaining consistency so far this season. Other rumors indicate the shoulder feels pretty good, but they've just got to figure some things out, not to mention some issues with his lower back. Gerbe will head to Lakeland to rehab there. Challenging Diaz is a good idea; he's got an idea how to pitch, and he just needs a chance to refine himself against better competition.

Posted by: Mark, 08/01/09


Acquired Jarrod Washburn (LHP) from Seattle in exchange for Maricio Robles (LHP) and Luke French (LHP)

Analysis: Adding Washburn is a move to bolster a rotation that had many question marks beyond Verlander and Jackson. Though Robles and French are solid arms from the left side, fans shouldn't be too shaken by the loss.

Posted by: Mark, 07/31/09


Sent Josh Anderson (OF) to Kansas City Royals in exchange for Cash considerations

Analysis: It looked to be pretty clear once the Tigers had designated Anderson for assignment that the Tigers didn't view him in their long term plans, and considering the number of outfielders in the upper levels of the minor leagues that need at-bats, sending him down wasn't really an option. Sending him to KC for a nominal amount of money likely does little more than get him off the books and allow the Tigers to focus on other matters.

Posted by: Wez, 07/30/09


Suspended Frank Penalver (RHP)

Suspended Carlos Alvarez (RHP)

Analysis: Both players will hit the shelf for 50 games, becoming the third and fourth Tigers suspended this year. Despite the Tigers focus on character in player acquisition in recent seasons, this shows they are not immune to the problems of the league. Penalver has just returned from an injury, and it is possible he felt the need to use PEDs to help in his recovery.

Posted by: Mark, 07/29/09


Re-assigned Gustavo Nunez (SS) from GCL to West Michigan

Re-assigned Hernan Perez (SS) from West Michigan to GCL

Re-assigned Kris Regas (LHP) from Toledo to Erie

Placed Luis Marte (RHP) on the 7-day DL

Activated Wilsen Palacios from the suspension list

Activated Eduardo Gonzalez from the suspension list

Re-assigned Wilsen Palacios from the VSL to the DSL

Re-assigned Eduardo Gonzalez from VSL to the DSL

Re-assigned Billy Alvino from Lakeland to GCL

Placed Jay Sborz (RHP) on the 7-day DL (oblique)

Analysis: Nunez return to the 'Caps is relatively quick, and I imagine there was some counseling (internal) that took place to educate him on his behavior. While Perez has the defensive chops to stick with West Michigan, there is little doubt Nunez's offensive game this season has been a huge boost and will be needed down the stretch.

Posted by: Mark, 07/28/09


Activated Jay Sborz (RHP) from 7-day DL (oblique)

Analysis: Watch Sborz carefully as he comes back from the oblique injury. These can be touchy injuries, and there can be lingering effects, including altered mechanics that can cause problems.

There should also be an additional move coming, as the Toledo roster is one over the 24-man limit, while Erie is one under their limit.

Posted by: Mark, 07/25/09


Activated Carlos Guillen (OF) from 15-day DL

Designated Josh Anderson (OF) for assignment

Re-assigned Michael Bertram (1B/3B) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Luis Grullon (1B/OF) from GCL to Lakeland

Optioned Freddy Dolsi (RHP) to Toledo

Recalled Eddie Bonine (RHP) from Toledo to Detroit

Optioned Eddie Bonine (RHP) to Toledo

Purchased the contract of Casey Fien (RHP)

Analysis: Guillen returns after rehabbing his injured shoulder, but those that are expecting him to be an impact bat for this team, may be disappointed. I'm still not convinced there's enough in the tank to really make a difference. His ability to work counts still holds true, so that may be some benefit to the lineup. The decision to designate Anderson had to happen. He's a complete and utter black hole on offense, and there really was no other decision for this club. He's a nice guy to have around if you are the Yankees or Red Sox and can score runs like its going out of style. On most teams, he should be getting at-bats in Triple-A at the most.

Posted by: Mark, 07/24/09


Placed Ryan Strieby on the 7-day DL (wrist)

Signed Erick Soto (SS)

Signed Drew Graham (RHP)

Analysis: Strieby continues to battle arthritis and soreness in his surgically repaired wrist. There are some rumblings that the organization may opt to shut him down for the year, allowing him to get additional repairs done early, and be 100% for spring training. He's still a productive player in the Erie lineup while hurt, but his long term future is of far more concern. Until he plays an extended stretch -- whether that be this year or next -- without any concerns surrounding the wrist, this has to be a serious concern for his prospect status.

Posted by: Mark, 07/22/09


Placed Josh Kite (LHP) on the 7-day DL

Re-assigned Jared Gayhart (RHP) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Zach Simons (RHP) from Erie to Toledo

Re-assigned Nolan Cain (RHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Re-assigned Gustavo Nunez (SS) from West Michigan to GCL

Suspended Billis Andujar (RHP)

Suspended Jose Encarnacion (RHP)

Signed Austin Wood (LHP)

Analysis: Gayhart has been flying through the system since signing last summer. Starting the year at West Michigan, he was nearly unhittable, and has continued to pitch well after a promotion to Lakeland. Be cautious though, while he has been very good, there has been some smoke and mirrors involved with quite a bit of luck going his way thus far.

UPDATE: The move of Simons to Toledo is at least in part an indication that he could be closing in on a chance in the big leagues. With Joel Zumaya out, and questions surrounding several relievers in the bullpen, Simons could be a guy they give a shot as we head to August.

Posted by: Mark, 07/20/09


Placed Joel Zumaya (RHP) on the 15-day DL (shoulder)

Recalled Ryan Perry (RHP) from Toledo to Detroit

Analysis: Though it was likely already time, it is now definitely time to stop considering Joel Zumaya a critical piece of this organization's future. He has proven throughout his minor league and Major League career, that he simply cannot stay healthy, and even when healthy this year, he wasn't the most effective bullpen arm. Perry's command has been better in Toledo, so there is some hope that he might be able to assume a big role down the stretch.

Posted by: Mark, 07/18/09


Gustavo Nunez (SS) suspended

Re-assigned Hernan Perez (SS) from GCL to West Michigan

Signed Ryan Ketchner (LHP)

Assigned Ryan Ketchner (LHP) to Lakeland

Re-assigned Nolan Cain (RHP) from Lakeland to GCL

Re-assigned Bruce Rondon (RHP) from GCL to VSL

Signed Jesus Ustariz (INF)

Signed Jose Mendoza (RHP)

Analysis: We're still working on the cause of the suspension for Nunez, but be assured we will update here as soon as we have something. This is a big hit for the 'Caps as he has been a catalyst atop the lineup all season long. Perez has had a surprising start in the GCL, and while the glove will play in the Midwest League, the bat could be very overmatched.

Update: The Ketchner signing is a bit curious, but it gives the Flying Tigers another lefty and an experienced arm to help out. If he pitches well, don't be shocked if he moves up. Moving Rondon back to the VSL is another curious move, and I'll be looking to find out more in the coming days, but I would guess it has to do with getting him more quality innings to iron things out and grow as a pitcher.

Ustariz and Mendoza are two more July 2nd signings for the Tigers, and I'll update more on the Premium Board as I get additional information.

Posted by: Mark, 07/13/09


Designated Don Kelly (UT) for assignment

Recalled Clete Thomas (OF) from Toledo

Brendan Wise (RHP) from Lakeland to Erie

Nolan Cain (RHP) from GCL to Lakeland

Analysis: While neither player is a difference maker for the Tigers right now, Thomas is the better player, and one capable of providing more in Detroit. He is a better defender, has a stronger arm, more speed, and actually more pop in his bat, than Kelly. Thomas was tearing the cover off the ball in Toledo, and he deserves a chance to stick as a reserve outfielder.

Posted by: Mark, 07/08/09


Placed Jay Sborz (RHP) on 7-day DL

Assigned Kris Regas (LHP) to Toledo

Signed Michael Morrison (RHP)

Assigned Michael Morrison (RHP) to Oneonta

Analysis: It's an oblique injury for Sborz, something that will need to be monitored closely once he returns to action, as these things can linger for a while. Regas was recently re-signed after being cut during spring training. He's not a big time arm, or a serious prospect, but he should be able to get outs out of the Toledo bullpen.

Morrison was the Tigers 29th round pick out of Cal State Fullerton. He had just finished his junior season with the Titans, and there was some skepticism about the Tigers ability to sign him to a contract. He's a good get, and a guy that could turn into a solid prospect.

Posted by: Mark, 07/07/09


Re-assigned Josh Rainwater (RHP) from Erie to Toledo

Placed Alfredo Figaro (RHP) on the 7-day DL

Placed Jeramy Laster (OF) on the Temporarily Inactive list

Re-assigned Luis Castillo (OF) from GCL to Lakeland

Signed Eddie Rush (OF)

Assigned Eddie Rush (OF) to GCL

Signed Nolan Moody (RHP)

Assigned Nolan Moody (RHP) to GCL

Placed Michael Hollimon (INF) on the 7-day DL (shoulder)

Re-assigned Santo De Leon from Lakeland to Erie

Released Ron Chiavacci (RHP)

Signed Nate Bump (RHP)

Assigned Nate Bump (RHP) to Toledo

Re-assigned Billy Alvino from GCL to Lakeland

Re-assigned Alden Carrithers (2B) from Oneonta to West Michigan

Signed Kris Regas (LHP)

Signed Alwin Delgado (SS)

Signed Daniel Carranza (SS)

Activated Jeramy Laster from the Temporarily Inactive list

Re-assigned Luis Castillo from Lakeland to GCL

Analysis: The big news in this huge run down is the signings of Delgado and Carranza as the Tigers first two July 2nd signings of the year. Both players are very, very toolsy and athletic with a significant raw tool set.

The DL moves for Hollimon and Figaro are unfortnate, though for different reasons. Figaro was in a position to get more time in Detroit before the injury, while Hollimon might be seeing his prospect status dwindle further with the balky shoulder.

Posted by: Mark, 07/06/09


Activated Ryan Strieby (1B) from the 7-day DL

Placed Max Leon (UT) on the 7-day DL

Re-assigned Keith Hernandez from GCL to Oneonta

Released Wade Lamont (1B)

Signed Nolan Cain (RHP)

Assigned Nolan Cain (RHP) to GCL

Placed Ernesto Martes on the 7-day DL

Analysis: The return of Ryan Strieby is a good thin for the 'Wolves, as even at partial strength, his presence in the lineup is a huge help. He is likely to require some periodic breaks to keep his wrist in good health. Cain is another arm signed to help out in the GCL, along with the likes of Samuels and Manus of previous days. The release of Lamont is not shocking, as he was likely one of the poorer overall players in the system.

Posted by: Mark, 07/01/09


Re-assigned Jay Sborz (RHP) from Erie to Toledo

Re-assigned Robbie Weinhardt (RHP) from Lakeland to Erie

Signed Maiko Loyola (OF)

Assigned Maiko Loyola (OF) to Lakeland

Activated Ben Guez (OF) from the 7-day DL

Analysis: Sborz and Weinhardt are both worth of promotion, and both need to be challenged. Weinhardt has dominated the Florida State League for the past 12 months, and he needed to be pushed to face more advanced hitters. Loyola's signing signals some bad news for Kody Kaiser's shoulder, and while results are not known yet, the initial injury diagnosis was not good.

Posted by: Mark, 06/29/09


Placed Nate Robertson (LHP) on the disabled list

Purchased the contract of Fu-Te Ni (LHP) from Toledo

Optioned Alfredo Figaro (RHP) to Toledo

Recalled Luke French (LHP) from Toledo

Analysis: Questions surrounding Robertson's injury will persist given his struggles throughout the first half of the season, but regardless, the Tigers needed a more effective option in the bullpen than Robertson was providing, and Ni gives them a second left-handed option. Ni had a 2.60 ERA in 24 appearances for the Mud Hens, and posted a strikeout-to-walk ratio of better than three-to-one, so given the need for a left-hander, Ni was the natural choice to get his first crack at big league hitters.

UPDATE: Though not official yet, the Tigers announced that Luke French will take Figaro's spot in the rotation on Friday against Minnesota. Many thought French was the logical candidate to call up when the rotation spot first opened up. While some have alluded to the move having to do with a better matchup with a left-hander, it's unlikely Figaro would have lost his spot had he pitched better over the weekend.

Posted by: Wez, 06/28/09


Signed Zach Samuels (RHP)

Signed Edwin Gomez (SS)

Re-assigned Jared Gayhart (RHP) from West Michigan to Lakeland

Re-assigned Nick Cassavechia (RHP) from Oneonta to West Michigan

Released Zuriel Stephenson (RHP)

Released Crucito Moreno (RHP)

Placed Trevor Feeney (RHP) on the 7-day DL

Placed Ryan Strieby (1B) on the 7-day DL (wrist)

Re-assigned Ronnie Bourquin from West Michigan to Erie

Analysis: Samuels should help fill out a GCL pitching staff that lacks depth and experience. Gayhart has been dominating Midwest League hitters, but some of it may not be for real as he is sporting an insanely low BABIP, which could portend some luck on his part. Cassavechia has temporarily scrapped plans to alter his delivery to gain more velocity, as he couldn't get comfortable with it in EST before heading off to pitch in games, but he should still be a quality bullpen arm for the 'Caps.

UPDATE: Signing Gomez is a good get for the Tigers. He was their fourth round pick this month, and he is an ultra-toolsy kid that could end up in the outfield down the line. He's got power potential from both sides of the plate, and plenty of speed.

Posted by: Mark, 06/24/09


Activated Eddie Bonine (RHP)

Re-assigned Keith Hernandez (C) from Toledo to Oneonta

Assigned Dane Sardinha (C) to Toledo

Analysis: Bonine has returned from tending to some family business, and its good to have him back, though the circumstances are very unfortunate. Sardinha clearing waivers is no shock, and neither is the re-assignment from Toledo to Oneonta for Hernandez.

Posted by: Mark, 06/23/09


Re-assigned Mauricio Robles (LHP) from West Michigan to Lakeland

Signed Giovanni Soto (LHP)

Recalled Freddy Dolsi (RHP) from Toledo

Analysis: The Robles move is not shocking. What was more shocking is that he did not receive this assignment out of the gate this season. He's been largely toying with MWL hitters this season, and its a good move for him. Soto is a tall, projectable lefty that is a huge project for the Tigers as their 21st round pick this year. He'll join the GCL club.

UPDATE: Dolsi is the guy to replace Perry on the big league roster, and its really not surprsing. They liked his stuff last year, and if Perry doesn't make the team out of spring training, Dolsi is probably the last reliever on the roster. It's amazing to say that with Dolsi replacing Perry in the bullpen, the average fastball velocity of our bullpen just went down!

Posted by: Mark, 06/22/09


Re-assigned Thad Weber (RHP) from Lakeland to Erie

Optioned Ryan Perry to Toledo

Analysis: Not a shocking move here, though there was some discussion of sending LJ Gagnier to Erie to fill Figaro's spot. Weber will join the team tomorrow during their off-day back in Erie, and he will make the start on Tuesday. He's had a spectacular season so far in Lakeland, and he's got the stuff to succeed in the Eastern League.

Posted by: Mark, 06/21/09


Recalled Alfredo Figaro (RHP) from Erie

Designated Dane Sardinha (C) for assignment

Analysis: This move was actually expected for days since the Tigers announced Figaro was joining the Tigers' rotation, but only became official today as there was no need to send Sardinha down or add Figaro until today. It's highly unlikely anyone claims Sardinha, and he'll most likely end up in Toledo splitting time behind the plate with Max St. Pierre.

Posted by: Wez, 06/20/09


Recalled Dusty Ryan (C) from Toledo to Detroit

Re-assigned Keith Hernandez (C) from Oneonta to Toledo

Signed Jordan Cruz (OF)

Placed Kody Kaiser (OF) on the 7-day DL

Analysis: Ryan officially fills the roster spot vacated by Willis' DL stint, and Figaro will officially be called up either tonight or tomorrow for his start. There is still speculation that either Dane Sardinha will be DFA'd to make room, or Gerald Laird will hit the 15-day DL. More to come.

UPDATE: Cruz was signed to help fill out the Oneonta roster. He will work in the outfield with Castillo and Taylor, while some of the infielders could also see sporadic time in the outfield.

Posted by: Mark, 06/19/09


Placed Dontrelle Willis (LHP) on the 15-day DL (anxiety disorder)

Recalled Alfredo Figaro (RHP) from Erie to Detroit

Analysis: It's been known for most of the week that Willis would not be making his weekend start, but the question remained what they would do with him. Heading back to the DL is a logical move, but I'm not sure we can expect better results down the line. Figaro's stock has steadily risen as he's finally pitched well against advanced competition. After fitting in the back of the TigsTown Top 50 over the winter, Figaro has made a name for himself and has looked like a guy capable of staying in the rotation long term. It may be a rocky road in his first few starts, but the potential is there to be an excellent starter.

Posted by: Mark, 06/18/09


Signed Jamie Johnson (OF)

Activated Mauricio Robles (LHP) from the 7-day DL (blister)

Analysis: Johnson signed for a $125,000 bonus, and he should be headed to Oneonta to start his season on Friday and help round out a roster with only three full-time outfielders on it. Robles' return helps bring the West Michigan rotation back to whole, and it gives them one of their most experienced pitchers back in the fold. The blister wasn't considered a big deal, but it should be watched closely for recurrence.

Posted by: Mark, 06/17/09


Signed Eric Roof (C)

Signed John Murrian (C)

Signed Wade Gaynor (3B)

Signed Chris Sedon (2B)

Signed Rawley Bishop (3B)

Signed Jimmy Gulliver (SS)

Signed Michael Rockett (OF)

Signed Matt Mansilla (OF)

Signed Nathan Newman (RHP)

Signed Adam Wilk (LHP)

Signed Kenny Faulk (LHP)

Signed Cory Hamilton (RHP)

Signed Kevan Hess (RHP)

Signed Wade Kapteyn (RHP)

Signed Pat McKenna (SS)

Signed Nelson Pierre (3B)

Signed Franklin Felida (C)

Eric Broberg (RHP) retired

Roger Tomas (INF) retired

Re-assigned Keith Hernandez (C) from West Michigan to Oneonta

Re-assigned Luis Palacios (INF) from West Michigan to Oneonta

Analysis: No big surprise here. Hernadez was slated their from the start until injuries forced him to West Michigan for a stretch. Palacios has appeared over-matched since day-one in Grand Rapids, and hopefully he can get back on track in the NYPL. The moves leave the 'Caps one player short on the active roster, but Ben Guez is eligible to return from the DL on Wednesday, and Mauricio Robles was eligible to return from the DL yesterday.

UPDATE: No shocking signings here, other than I may have expected the likes of Gaynor and Kapteyn to take a touch longer. The Oneonta roster will be filled with experienced players, and may have a chance to do well. More on that and the GCL roster in the season preview articles out before their respective opening days.

Posted by: Mark, 06/15/09


Re-assigned Scott Sizemore (2B) from Erie to Toledo

Re-assigned Danny Worth (INF) from Toledo to Erie

Placed Kyle Peter (OF) on the 7-day DL

Re-assigned Josh Workman (OF) from EST to Lakeland

Activated Devin Thomas (1B) from the Reserve List

Re-assigned Mike Gosse (2B) from Lakeland to West Michigan

Analysis: Hopefully Peter's trip to the DL will get him right and he'll start hitting the ball again. After a strong winter season, Peter has fallen flat this season in Lakeland, and they could really use his on-base ability and speed at the top of the order. Josh Workman has been toiling in EST, and he's probably not going to work as more than a reserve guy for Lakeland. Bringing Thomas back makes sense in an attempt to add some punch to the Lakeland lineup, and Gosse really was out of place in High-A at this juncture. There should be a corresponding move at West Michigan, and we'll update as we find out what it is.

UPDATE: This is a much needed move for Sizemore and the organization. He has been killing Double-A pitching all season, and if they think he might get time in Detroit soon, the Triple-A test can't hurt. Worth has nearly fallen off the prospect landscape and he'll need some monster numbers to re-emerge.

Posted by: Mark, 06/14/09


Agreed to contract terms with Eric Roof (C)

Agreed to contract terms with Pat McKenna (SS)

Agreed to contract terms with Kenny Faulk (LHP)

Analysis: The first of the players to agree to contract terms, you'll likely see a slew of players agreeing to terms in the next few days as many of them prepare to join Oneonta's club, which starts play this Friday.

Posted by: Wez, 06/13/09


Placed Jeremy Bonderman (RHP) on the 15-day DL (shoulder)

Recalled Ryan Perry (RHP) from Toledo

Analysis: Bonderman was clearly not ready for a return to the Major Leagues, and the additional time on the DL and rehab will hopefully afford him more opportunity to build arm strength and stamina; something that may not completely return until 2010. Perry is able to be recalled so promptly because he is taking the place of a player going on the DL.

Posted by: Mark, 06/12/09


Optioned Clete Thomas (OF) to Toledo

Tigers purchase contract of Don Kelly (UT) from Toledo

Activated Billy Nowlin (1B) from the 7-day DL (back)

Placed Ben Guez (OF) on the 7-day DL

Analysis: Guez has been starting to come to life at the plate, but Nowlin brings a power bat back to the lineup for the 'Caps. Hopefully he picks up where he left off swinging a hot stick.

UPDATE: In a somewhat surprising move, the Tigers optioned Thomas down to Toledo, while bringing Don Kelly up from Toledo. Kelly is very versatile, strong defensively, and has been hitting very well in Toledo. Manager Jim Leyland was quoted as saying that Thomas was becoming susceptible to high fastballs and needed to shorten his swing to compete against big league pitching. That being said, given Leyland's affinity for Thomas, expect him back up again this season.

Posted by: Mark, 06/11/09


Activated Brayan Villareal (RHP) from the 7-day DL (oblique)

Re-assigned Luis Sanz (RHP) from West Michigan to EST

Analysis: Sanz had a rocky time in West Michigan, not knowing which pitcher would show up on a given night. He wasn't completely overmatched, but he's not completely ready for full-season ball either. Villareal's return is significant, and he should get right back to dominating the Midwest League.

Posted by: Mark, 06/10/09


Activated Casper Wells (OF) from Disabled List and assigned to Erie

Re-assigned Joe Tucker (OF) from Erie to Lakeland

Re-assigned Roger Tomas (INF) from Lakeland to EST

Signed Jose Valdez (RHP)

Analysis: Tomas was officially placed on the Oneonta roster but will spend a couple of weeks in EST before heading there to continue his season. Activating Wells after his broken hand should be a big boost to the SeaWolves.

Posted by: Wez, 06/09/09


Activated Jeremy Bonderman (RHP) from the 15-day DL

Optioned Ryan Perry (RHP) to Toledo

Eddie Bonine (RHP) placed on temporary inactive list

Released Jason Tyner (OF)

Analysis: The Tigers had to option someone down to open up a roster spot for Bonderman for Monday evening's start, and Perry ended up pulling the short straw, as he's one of a few that has an option remaining. No word yet on if Perry will be returning to Detroit soon or if the Tigers will go with a six man rotation for the next week or so, but given how well Perry has pitched, it's unlikely he'll be gone from Detroit for long. To clear room for Perry, Eddie Bonine was placed on the temporary inactive list. And to make room for Jeff Larish, the Tigers have released outfielder Jason Tyner.

Posted by: Wez, 06/08/09


Activated Marcus Thames (OF) from the 15-day DL

Optioned Jeff Larish (1B) to Toledo

Placed Mauricio Robles (LHP) on the 7-day DL (blister)

Re-assigned Rob Waite (RHP) from EST to West Michigan

Analysis: While I think Jeff Larish is one of the Tigers best 25 players and should be on the roster as a result, he needs consistent at-bats right now to get things rolling again. He's capable of being an offensive force if he gets going. The return of Thames will be interesting to watch. The team has lacked punch lately, and Thames certainly provides that, but he also epitomizes exactly what the Tigers do poorly, swing and miss a lot and fail to work pitchers. Robles DL stint is nothing serious, as he has a blister on his finger. As long as it doesn't become problematic or recurring long term, things should be fine.

Posted by: Mark, 06/06/09


Re-assigned Ivan Espinoza (OF) from the DSL to the VSL

Analysis: This move rescinds the decision to send Wondy De Los Santos to the DSL for the 2009 season. "We are hoping that Espinoza will be able to give us a little more solid outfield play and offense to our club there." said Tom Moore, Director of International Operations for the Tigers. Espinoza is a quality depth player that should be able to fill in at all three outfield positions if necessary. Keeping Wondy in the VSL will make for his third season in the league, and he will look to improve on his 2008 season where he finished ninth in the league in average with a .301 mark.

Posted by: Mark, 06/06/09


Placed Billy Nowlin (OF/1B) on the 7-day DL (back)

Re-assigned Keith Hernandez (C) from EST to West Michigan

Analysis: Nowlin's bat has been a huge boon for the 'Caps this season, and hopefully a little rest for his balking back will get him swinging a hot stick yet again. Hernandez is a guy that mashed at the Division II college level, and there are some that believe he could hit as a pro, but this type of jump may be a bit much for him right now.

Posted by: Mark, 06/03/09


Signed Jose Encarnacion (RHP)

Signed Yadier Polanco (LHP)

Signed Villis Andujar (RHP)

Analysis: All three pitchers will make their pro debuts with the DSL Tigers as they start their season Saturday. Check the DSL Tigers Season Preview article that comes out later today for more details on each of these hurlers.

Posted by: Mark, 05/29/09


Re-assigned Jay Sborz from Lakeland to Erie

Placed Duane Below (LHP) on the 7-day DL (elbow)

Activated Michael Hollimon (IF) from the 7-day DL

Re-assigned Santo De Leon from Erie to Lakeland

Analysis: De Leon to Lakeland isn't terribly shocking, he's looked pretty bad at the plate for Erie this season; proving just how much of a mirage his performance at Erie was last summer. Hollimon's return is huge for him, as he needs to perform well to stay in the mix for a utility role or middle infield role in Detroit in 2010 and beyond. Test results are still pending for Below, but right now its just been dubbed an elbow strain.

Posted by: Mark, 05/26/09


Assigned Marcus Thames to Toledo for rehab

Analysis: Thames has been nearing his return to the Tiger lineup and this rehab assignment will be his final tune up before hitting the field in Detroit again. It will be interesting to see how the team fits him back into the outfield/DH mix, considering how well they have been playing in his absence. Expect a few games in Toledo before we start hearing rumblings of his return.

Posted by: Mark, 05/26/09


Activated Magglio Ordonez (OF) from the bereavement list

Optioned Wilkin Ramirez (OF) from Detroit to Toledo

Re-assigned Pat Stanley (RHP) from Toledo to Erie

Re-assigned Brendan Wise (RHP) from Erie to Lakeland

Re-assigned Robert Waite (RHP) from Lakeland to EST

Analysis: Ramirez might just have given Tiger fans a glimpse of an exciting future. With his mammoth blast on Wednesday night, Ramirez put on display not only his tremendous raw power, but also his fun-loving attitude and love of the game. Wilkin has long been a supremely talented player, and he may have just announced that he plans to be a supremely talented big leaguer. Wilkin Ramirez will be back in Detroit folks.

Posted by: Mark, 05/22/09


Activated Nate Robertson (LHP) from the 15-day DL (back)

Optioned Luke French (LHP) from Detroit to Toledo

Analysis: Luke French may have just earned himself another trip to the big leagues by showing well in a couple of relief appearances while Nate Robertson got his back in order. French is a durably lefty with enough stuff to get outs at the MLB level, and I don't think his time in Detroit is over.

Posted by: Mark, 05/21/09


Activated Jeramy Laster (OF) from the 7-day DL (knee)

Activated Chris Carlson (1B) from the 7-day DL (quad)

Placed Devin Thomas (1B) on reserve list

Analysis: Thomas filled in capably, but there simply isn't room for another first baseman/designated hitter type in Lakeland right now. His reserve list status is likely temporary, as there may be additional moves that open up room in Lakeland, or he could be re-assigned to EST. The return of Carlson and Laster provides some much needed power to the Lakeland lineup, and both players could be a big help to the club. Watch Laster closely, as it will be critical to monitor how he does coming back from and MCL sprain.

Posted by: Mark, 05/20/09


Recalled Wilkin Ramirez (OF) from Toledo

Analysis: An excellent reward for a player that has been on fire of late in Triple-A. Ramirez -- TigsTown's #2 prospect -- has showed well in trials during big league spring training the last two years, and his recent tear at Toledo could translate into a spark in Detroit. Ordonez isn't expected to be gone long, so for Ramirez to stick around he will need to hit and hit early in his big league trial.

Posted by: Mark, 05/19/09


Placed Magglio Ordonez (OF) on the bereavement list

Analysis: Ordonez's wife will be having surgery and this move allows the Tigers an opportunity to bring in another player while he is away. While it is secondary to health of his wife, maybe a few days away are exactly what Maggs needs to get his stick rolling again.

Posted by: Mark, 05/18/09


Signed Wilfredo Ramirez (LHP)

Analysis: Ramirez is a former Indian prospect that should help lock down games out of the VSL Tigers bullpen. Having pitched stateside, he offers extensive experience, and the Tigers are optimistic that he can get back to the states with their organization.

Posted by: Mark, 05/17/09


Placed Chao-Ting Tang (OF) on the 7-day DL (face)

Re-assigned Avisail Garcia (OF) from Lakeland to West Michigan

Re-assigned Matt Hoffman (LHP) from West Michigan to Lakeland

Placed Brayan Villareal (RHP) on the 7-day DL (oblique)

Re-assigned Mark Sorensen (RHP) from EST to West Michigan

Re-assigned Luis Sanz (RHP) from EST to West Michigan

Re-assigned Duane Below (LHP) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Brooks Brown (RHP) from Erie to Toledo

Placed Nate Robertson (LHP) on 15-day DL (back)

Purchased the contract of Luke French (LHP) from Toledo

Analysis: Tons of moves on the docket, at all levels within the organization. The DL trip for Robertson leads to a slew of promotions including French to Detroit, Brown to Toledo, Below to Erie, and Hoffman to West Michigan. All of the promotions are deserved, as each of the three lower pitchers are having success at levels they have previously visited. I love the aggressiveness from the organization. Sanz and Sorensen were both in the mix for the West Michigan roster this spring and were squeezed out as a function of the numbers game. Villareal's DL trip isn't expected to be serious, so expect him back relatively soon. Moving Garcia to West Michigan as Tang hits the DL after facial surgery is a smart move. While he wasn't completely over-matched at Lakeland, the Midwest League is far more appropriate and give him a better chance for success in a winning environment.

Posted by: Mark, 05/15/09


Activated Dontrelle Willis (LHP) from 15-day DL (anxiety disorder)

Designated Juan Rincon (RHP) for assignment

Signed Carlos Alvarado (RHP)

Signed Angel Nesbitt (RHP)

Analysis: It's not completely the end of the road for Rincon, but I'll be mildly surprised if he accepts the assignment to the minor leagues. There's probably a team out there that thinks he can pitch in the big leagues, and if I were him, I'd head down that path. Willis' return is a huge deal for the Tigers, not necessarily because they desparately need more starting pitching, but because it would be nice to get some sort of return on that huge investment.

Update: Alvarado and Nesbitt were both signed recently and will participate in the Venezuelan Summer League this season. More signings are on the way, so look for details in the VSL and DSL season previews coming soon.

Posted by: Mark, 05/13/09


Re-assigned Jay Sborz(RHP) from Erie to Lakeland

Activated Brendan Wise (RHP) from 7-day DL (shoulder)

Analysis: As stated earlier, Wise's shoudler issues were thought to be pretty minor; just some general soreness and fatigue. That doesn't preclude us from watching him closely to see both how he performs and how he feels after pitching. Shoulders are tenuous joints for pitchers and he should be monitored closely for the next couple of months. Sborz wasn't completely over-matched at Double-A, but with the mechanical inconsistencies he was facing this spring, it may be a good thing for him have some time back in Lakeland in a more instructional environment to finish sorting things out.

Posted by: Mark, 05/12/09


Released Nick Regilio (RHP)

Re-assigned Pat Stanley (RHP) from Lakeland to Toledo

Analysis: Don't be completely shocked by the move of Pat Stanly from Lakeland to Toledo this quickly. He's older than most realize, and as we noted during spring training, Lakeland Manager Andy Barkett said he had the potential to move very quickly; which he certainly has. He was far too much for the Florida State League and it will be interesting to see how he handles Triple-A so quickly. If he continues to pitch well there, don't count him out of the Detroit mix should a need arise later this season.

Posted by: Mark, 05/11/09


Re-assigned Chad Linder (LHP) from EST to Lakeland

Analysis: Linder made his affiliated debut with the LFT on Friday night and he finally gives Manager Andy Barkett a lefty to work with in his bullpen. He's a solid guy with a good approach on the mound, and he should mix in pretty well.

Posted by: Mark, 05/09/09


Placed Chris Carlson (1B) on the 7-day DL (leg)

Re-assigned Devin Thomas (1B) from EST to Lakeland

Re-assigned Avisail Garcia (OF) from EST to Lakeland

Re-assigned Andy Dirks (OF) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Jeff Frazier (OF) from Erie to Toledo

Analysis: Details are still surfacing on Carlson's injury, but it isn't expected to be a long term concern and he could be back relatively quickly. Thomas was showing signs of picking up the defensive responsibilities at first base in spring training, and he should be a solid player for the LFT. His bat is the key here and if he can get in an early groove at the dish, he can be a nice power hitting switch hitter for Manager Andy Barkett. Avisail Garcia's move to Lakeland is a little surprising on the surface, but he's been playing well all spring, including in EST and has been showing better than the other outfield options on the back fields at Tiger Town. I don't expect this to be a long term move, but stranger things have happened. Dirks has been killing the ball and running all over the place in Lakeland, and he'll get a chance to play everyday in Erie. This is a kid that's going to be a big leaguer, mark it down. The opening in Erie came about as Jeff Frazier moves up to Toledo to backfill the loss of Clete Thomas.

Posted by: Mark, 05/08/09


Placed Carlos Guillen (OF) on the 15-day DL (shoulder)

Optioned Clay Rapada (LHP) to Toledo

Recalled Jeff Larish (1B) from Toledo to Detroit

Recalled Clete Thomas (OF) from Toledo to Detroit

Transferred Matt Treanor (C) from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL (sports hernia/hip)

Analysis: This move really doesn't change much. Sixty days on the DL still leaves the window open for Treanor to return to Detroit this season if things go well, but it also opens up a 40-man roster spot. This gives them some flexibility in who they call up should they decide to send Raburn back down to Toledo due to his struggles at the plate and in the field.

Update: Its good that Guillen hits the DL as he's clearly hurting the team and its not going to get better until he's healthy. Carrying 13 pitchers is rarely a good idea, and while it may have served a purpose during a couple of series, there's no use in continuing it. Thomas and Larish give the team two left-handed bats, and Thomas provides very good outfield defense. Since going down, Larish has been killing the ball for Toledo, so hopefully the regular at-bats were enough to get him rolling.

Posted by: Mark, 05/05/09


Optioned Jeff Larish (1B) to Toledo

Recalled Clay Rapada (LHP) from Toledo to Detroit

Released Jose Martinez (RHP)

Released Victor Dionicio (OF)

Re-assigned Wondy De Los Santos (INF/OF) from VSL to DSL

Re-assigned Raul Leiva (C) from VSL to DSL

Ronald Torreabla (RHP) retired

Eduardo Gonzalez (RHP) suspended 50 games

Wilsen Palacios (RHP) suspended 50 games

Analysis: None of these moves are ground-shaking, but there is some intrigue here. Both Martinez and Dionicio had shown some tools in the past. Martinez was a solid bullpen type with a good fastball and a mix of off-speed pitches that were still being sorted out, and Dionicio had a tool shed of stuff to work with, but he just couldn't put things together on the field. Moving De los Santos and Leiva to the DSL relieves a bit of a log jam that had the potential to occur in the VSL, and could help them make a jump stateside for the 2010 season. The suspensions for Gonzalez and Palacios are MLB sanctioned suspensions dating back to last year's violation of the league's performance enhancing drugs policy, and both will be out for a large part of the 2009 season as a result. The organiation had them on an inactive list early last year, but that did not qualify as even a portion of their suspension for the rules violation.

Update: Larish going down makes sense in some respects, as he needs to get some consistent at-bats at some point, but the move to bring up Rapada seems perplexing on the surface. Its possible Leyland simply wants the extra left-hander in the bullpen against what can be a very lefty-heavy lineup for the Yankees. The assumption now is that this is a short term move, otherwise the bench is severely handicapped.

Posted by: Mark, 04/28/09


Re-assigned Angel Flores (C) from Toledo to West Michigan

Re-assigned Max St. Pierre (C) from Erie to Toledo

Re-assigned Jeff Kunkel (C) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Jordan Newton (C) from West Michigan to Lakeland

Placed Jade Todd (LHP) on the 7-day disabled list

Re-assigned Tyler Conn (LHP) from EST to West Michigan

Analysis: It may seem a bit complicated, but this actually makes grand sense for the catchers in the organization. St. Pierre has Triple-A experience and can be a good two-time a week caddy for Dusty Ryan in Toledo. Jeff Kunkel's defense is Major League ready, even is his bat has issues, and he can handle a good staff in Erie, easily. Flores is organizational filler and can easily be slotted in anywhere in the bottom of the organization. The big winner here is Jordan Newton. A guy that made a strong play for Lakeland in spring training, his bat is really showing well right now and his strides defensively have some believing he might just stick back there permanently; which would a huge boon for his prospect status. If he keeps hitting in Lakeland, not only will it help the LFT offense, but you should start hearing his name in prospect circles more frequently.

Update: Conn heads to West Michigan to fill in Todd's roster spot after he hits the DL. We're still awaiting word on the injury, but we'll keep you updated as more information becomes available.

Posted by: Mark, 04/27/09


Released Scott Williamson (RHP)

Purchased contract of Dane Sardinha (C) from Toledo

Placed Matt Treanor (C) on 15-day disabled list (sports hernia)

Re-assigned Angel Flores (C) from EST to Toledo

Analysis: The Treanor injury is a bit of a surprise, but its not the end of the world. Sardinha is adequate defensively, can spell Laird once a week as needed, and will fill a role. Calling up Dusty Ryan may have been an option here, but he needs everyday at-bats if he has any hope of continuing his development. Williamson was let go to make room for Bonine in Toledo.

Posted by: Mark, 04/26/09


Activated Joel Zumaya (RHP) from 15-day disabled list

Optioned Eddie Bonine (RHP) to AAA Toledo

Analysis: After Zumaya's impressive appearances in Toledo (3 games, 4 IP, 0 ER, 5 K, 0 BB), it was inevitable that the flame-thrower would be back in Detroit in a matter of days. Eddie Bonine became the odd man out likely for two reasons; he struggled as of late, including his last outing in which he allowed four earned runs, and he was one of two Tigers relievers to be able to be optioned down, and as Ryan Perry has pitched well, it was unlikely Perry would be sent down.

Posted by: Wez, 04/25/09


Acquired Jason Tyner (OF) from the Milwaukee Brewers

Analysis: This is a bit of an odd transaction, one harkening back to the old days of baseball. The Tigers gave up nothing to receive Tyner, as the Brewers simply assigned his contract to the Detroit organization. That doesn't say much for Tyner, but he's just filling at-bats in Toledo while Raburn is in Detroit indefinitely.

Posted by: Mark, 04/23/09


Placed Marcus Thames (OF) on the 15-day Disalbed List (pulled muscle)

Recalled Ryan Raburn (UT) from Toledo

Analysis: Raburn was in a tight battle for one of the final roster spots in Detroit at the end of Spring Training, and he'll get another chance to impress Jim Leyland and company. For a free swinger like Thames, and injury to the muscles in the rib cage area can linger, and it will be interesting to see how cautious the Tigers are with his return.

Posted by: Mark, 04/22/09


Placed Mike Hollimon (INF) on 7-day Disabled List (knee)

Re-assigned Shawn Roof (INF) from Lakeland to Erie

Re-assigned Mike Gosse (2B) from EST to Lakeland

Analysis: Hollimon's banged up knee finally pushed him to the DL with Roof replacing him on the roster in Erie. Roof has handled himself well in Erie in the past, and he should be fine again this year; at least defensively. Gosse was in a serious battle for a spot in West Michigan to start the year, and his first full-season assignment will be a huge test for his bat.

Posted by: Mark, 04/21/09


Placed Casper Wells (OF) on 7-day DL (hand)

Re-assigned Joe Tucker (UT) from Lakeland to Erie

Analysis: Wells had a severe pain go through his wrist and arm the other night on a check swing, and he was forced to leave the game as a result. X-rays were reportedly negative, but the pain still persists. The organization is likely to monitor this closely, seeing as Wells exploded in 2008 and became one of the organization's more promising outfield prospects. Check back for udpates on what additional moves are made to fill his roster spot in Erie.

Update: Wells confirmed on Wednesday that the bone is broken. Joe Tucker will replace him on the roster.

Posted by: Mark, 04/15/09


Placed Brendan Wise (RHP) on 7-day DL (shoulder)

Re-assigned Jay Sborz (RHP) from EST to Erie

Analysis: Sborz was a surprise on the EST list at the end of spring training, but it isn't shocking that he is one of the first getting a call when a roster spot cleared. No word on how Wise's MRI went, but anytime there are shoulder issues, it's not a good sign. Sborz should step right into the mix for chances at the back end of games in Erie.

Posted by: Mark, 04/14/09


Placed Jeramy Laster (OF) on 7-day DL (knee)

Re-assigned Chris White (OF) from EST to Lakeland

Analysis: Hopefully nothing serious for Laster, though he could miss a few weeks depending how the knee responds to rest and rehab. White looked good this spring and showed well at Weste Michigan last year. With Kaiser, Peter, and Dirks all in the outfield for the LFT, White may not get many chances.

Posted by: Mark, 04/13/09


Released Kris Regas (LHP)

Released Jon Huber (RHP)

Released Manny Miguelez (LHP)

Released Travis Phelps (RHP)

Released Timo Perez (OF)

Released Bronson Sardinha (OF)

Released Louis Ott (UT)

Released Danny Christensen (LHP)

Released Wilton Garcia (RHP)

Steve Gilman (RHP) retired

Signed Endrys Briceno (RHP)

Signed Leonel Vasquez (RHP)

Analysis: Another big slug of releases was expected this weekend, and there are really only a couple of names that are surprising. With Brent Clevlen clearing waivers and Josh Anderson arriving in Detroit, Timo Perez's place as a reserve outfielder in Toledo had disappeared. Gilman had been pitching fairly well this spring, so his retirement is a bit surprising, but I can't blame a guy with a Yale education for pursuing an alternate career.

Posted by: Mark, 04/05/09


Released Mark Brackman (RHP)

Released D'Andrea Vaughn (OF)

Released Dan DeLucia (RHP)

Released Adam Frost (INF)

Released Alexis Gomez (OF)

Outrighted Mike Hessman (3B) to Toledo

Outrighted Brent Clevlen (OF) to Toledo

Analysis: Generally another group of bubble guys on this round of cuts. Brackman, Vaughn, and Frost were all talented in some facets, but they weren't showing multiple skills which may have doomed them in what was a crowded spring training. DeLucia may have garnered more of an opportunity in other years, but with 90 pitchers in camp, there just wasn't room for someone with back-end starter ceiling at best. Gomez gets squeezed out because of the pure numbers in Double-A and Triple-A, and its likely he'll catch on elsewhere as a 4-A outfielder and suitable replacement if injuries strike the Major League squad. Update: Both Clevlen and Hessman were guys that could have been claimed by other teams, and I'm mildly surprised Clevlen wasn't given his raw talent. He'll fit in nicely at Toledo as insurance. Hessman may yet opt to go to Japan to play there, and the Tigers will not stand in his way if he chooses to do so.

Posted by: Mark, 04/03/09


Traded James Skelton (C) to Arizona for Brooks Brown (RHP)

Analysis: The D-Backs couldn't find room on the 25-man roster for Skelton, so they opted to work out a trade with the Tigers to retain his rights. Brown is a former first round draft pick with good velocity and control problems. He has had moderate success at Double-A and could slot into the Erie rotation pretty easily. The Diamondbacks now control the rights to Skelton, and he will not be subject to Rule 5 restrictions during the 2009 season.

Posted by: Mark, 04/02/09


Released Jordan Tata (RHP)

Released Jason Miller (LHP)

Released Beau Torbert (OF)

Released Charlie Lisk (C)

Released Yurendell De Caster (3B)

Released Paul Nardozzi (RHP)

Released Gabriel Herrera (RHP)

Released Tyler Weber (C)

Released Aaron Fuhrman (LHP)

Released Darwin De Leon (LHP)

Analysis: The only real shocker here is the release of De Leon. He showed excellent progress in the fall and looked strong in a couple outings this spring. This tells me there was something behind the scenes that led to this, but I have no knowledge of the situation. Tata had previously been a highly thought of prospect, but that had faded quickly with injuries and ineffectiveness. Nardozzi and Fuhrman had both shown some level of promise, but there are far too many pitchers around for everyone to have a spot. More cuts are sure to come in the next three to five days, so check back often.

Posted by: Mark, 04/01/09


Optioned Clay Rapada (LHP) to Toledo

Optioned Ryan Raburn (INF/OF) to Toledo

Placed Mike Hessman (3B/1B) on outright waivers

Assigned Scott Williamson (RHP) to minor league camp

Assigned Dane Sardinha (C) to minor league camp

Analysis: This really brings the final MLB roster into perspective. Porcello has made the Detroit rotation, and Perry has made the bullpen along with Juan Rincon and Eddie Bonine. Hessman could be heading to Japan if he can't get a better gig or a shot in MLB in the states. I won't be shocked to see Williamson opt to go somewhere he can get an MLB chance after pitching solidly this spring. Raburn is still on the block and could be going to any number of teams in the next day or two.

Posted by: Mark, 04/01/09


Optioned Clete Thomas (OF) to Toledo

Re-assigned Will Rhymes (2B) and Timo Perez (OF) to minor league camp

Released Gary Sheffield (OF)

Placed Jeremy Bonderman (RHP) on the 15-day disabled list (shoulder)

Analysis: Both moves have been expected for some time, so it is no surprise that they come now. Thomas and Rhymes should both be expected to see time in Detroit in 2009, after both have made strong impressions on Manager Jim Leyland this spring and last year as well. Both players should be integral parts of this year's Toledo squad.

Update: The Sheffield release is shocking but probably a wise move for an organization that has better options available at the DH slot. Sheff wasn't going to produce for the money he was owed, and its better to let more capable players take over as the team tries to win and get younger at the same time.

Update #2: Bonderman absolutely had to hit the DL at this point, without any velocity or stamina in his shoulder. The time will likely give him additional rehab and a couple of starts in the minor leagues before the Tigers try to bring him back to Detroit.

Posted by: Mark, 03/31/09


Traded Rudy Darrow (RHP) to Atlanta in exchange for Josh Anderson (OF)

Analysis: Though odd on the surface as the Tigers have a glut of Triple-A and Major League outfielders already, Anderson provides speed and good defense at all three outfield slots; something the Tigers are in need of. Darrow had become expendable with an influx in power arms at the minor league level, and he was show-cased a bit in a game against the Braves High-A club on Saturday afternoon. Anderson is out of options and will have to stick in Detroit, so expect a string of moves in the coming days; possibly to include Brent Clevlen, Ryan Raburn, and Marcus Thames.

Posted by: Mark, 03/30/09


Placed Joel Zumaya (RHP) on the Disabled List (shoulder)

Placed Dontrelle Willis (LHP) on the Disabled List (anxiety disorder)

Returned Kyle Bloom (LHP) to the Pittsburgh Pirates

Released Derek Lehrman (C)

Released Joaquin Guzman (SS)

Released Vinny Biancamano (INF)

Analysis: It is no shock that Zumaya hits the DL, but with a strong outing in minor league camp on Saturday, his stint may be quite brief. Willis' anxiety disorder sounds a bit mysterious, but there weren't many options left for the organization in this instance. Bloom had been adequate this spring, but there was just no room for him in the bullpen, and with the Pirates in need of pitching, he was almost assured to head back to the NL.

Despite his power, Lehrman just didn't really have much in terms of pro tools. He was a nice guy to have around in the GCL, but there are simply just too many catchers ahead of him. Guzman's days have been numbered the last two years as injuries and ineffectiveness have left him on the bubble many times. Biancamano's time in the organization was short-lived, but there's enough ability there to potentially get another chance in the low minors as a utility player.

Posted by: Mark, 03/29/09


Optioned Wilkin Ramriez (OF) to Toledo

Sent Alexis Gomez (OF), Max St. Pierre (C), and Don Kelly (INF) to minor league camp

Analysis: Yet again, these moves are not shocking out of Tiger Town. Ramirez was destined for the minor leagues, though he did make a strong impression this spring. Gomez was signed as minor league insurance, and the same can be said of Kelly and St. Pierre. Look for all three of the NRIs to be assigned to either Toledo or Erie before minor league camp is done.

Posted by: Mark, 03/26/09


Optioned Freddy Dolsi (RHP) to Toledo

Sent Casey Fien (RHP) and Fu-Te Ni (LHP) to moinor league camp

Analysis: Fien appeared to have an excellent shot at making the Detroit roster, but apparently he will have to wait a little longer to make his Major League debut. Both he and Dolsi should see extensive time in Detroit this year. Ni had little chance to make the roster, but he's not too far away.

Posted by: Mark, 03/22/09


Optioned Dusty Ryan (C) to Toledo

Optioned Alfredo Figaro (RHP) to Erie

Assigned Scott Sizemore (2B) to minor league camp

Analysis: The lack of surprises continues with these three moves. Sizemore didn't have to be optioned to a specific club since he wasn't on the 40-man roster, but its likely he ends up in Erie. Ryan's trip to Toledo was inevitible and Figaro was an extreme long shot for the pitching staff this spring. There's a chance Figaro could still be moved to Lakeland, but the organization would like to squeeze him into Erie.

Posted by: Mark, 03/20/09


Outrighted Macay McBride (LHP) to Toledo

Analysis: McBride is struggling to make it back from Tommy John surgery and he was going to have to be sent down at some point this spring because he wasn't going to be ready for Detroit. There may still be dreams of him becoming an effective pitcher, but the odds are getting longer. The Tigers now have one vacancy on the 40-man roster, which will likely be used by a reliever that makes the team at the end of camp.

Posted by: Mark, 03/19/09


Optioned Chris Lambert (RHP), Casper Wells (OF), and Michael Hollimon (INF) to Triple-A Toledo

Optioned Zach Simons (RHP) to Double-A Erie

Sent Cale Iorg (SS) and Alex Avila (C) to minor league camp

Analysis: No real shockers here. Lambert was the only one of the six with an actual shot to break camp with the club, and with a litany of other pitchers in camp its probably best he heads back to Toledo to try and build on a breakout 2008 season. Wells' assignment to Toledo (at least initially) is a bit surprising, as there are several outfielders in the mix here, but his ultimate assignment could change before Opening Day. Expect more cuts in the coming days; particularly as teams are eliminated from the WBC.

Posted by: Mark, 03/16/09


Signed Vinny Biancamano (INF)

Signed Edgar de la Rosa (RHP)

Signed Julio Guilarte (RHP)

Signed Yonny Mosquera (RHP)

Signed Jose Tablante (LHP)

Eric Harryman (INF/RHP) retired

Analysis: Biancamano comes to the Tigers after playing at Arizona State, Oklahoma, and Wayland Baptist. He's got a nice glove in the middle of the infield, but there are serious questions about his bat with wood and against better competition. De lal Rosa has been on the Tigers radar for a while, and his signing comes as little surprise. Guilarte, Mosquera, and Tablante are all recent signings in Venezuela after having pitched for the Tigers in Liga Parallela this winter. There are a few other moves that are awaiting verification, so check back with TigsTown for updates.

UPDATE: Despite coming to camp in a new role -- as a knuckle baller -- after struggling to hit the last two years, Eric Harryman is opting to retire from the game.

Posted by: Mark, 03/09/09


Signed Jon Huber (RHP)

Analysis: Huber is another in the long line of prospects the Tigers have signed to provide depth and competition at the Triple-A level. He should be able to work out of the Toledo bullpen, and if AJ Sager can get him back to his mid-2000s form, he might be a viable option should the bullpen implode again this year.

Posted by: Mark, 02/23/09


Brandon Timm (OF/RHP) retired

Analysis: Timm was set to come to camp as a pitcher this spring, after struggling to get his bat going as an outfielder. Working with a low-90s fastball and some feel for off-speed stuff, there was some though Timm could make it as a reliever. Instead, he opted to walk away from his baseball career at this time.

Posted by: Mark, 02/18/09


Signed Byron Aird (C)

Signed Antonio Cruz (LHP)

Signed Yurendell De Caster (3B)

Signed Nick Regilio (RHP)

Analysis: Aird signed as a 17-year old Australian amateur, and though he's raw behind the plate he has some promise and should head to the GCL this year. Cruz is destined for the Dominican Republic and will debut as a 17-year old this summer. De Caster split his time between Double-A and Triple-A in 2008, popping ten home runs and posting a .252 average at Triple-A for Columbus. He should be in the mix for a corner infield slot at Erie or Toledo. Regilio pitched in 18 games for the Astros Double-A affiliate in Round Rock last year, his first year back after missing 2006 and 2007 with elbow problems.

Posted by: Mark, 02/12/09


David Stokes (RHP) retired

Analysis: Stokes' retirement is a bit of a surprise after an unspectacular debut for Oneonta in 2008, posting a 5.74 ERA in 14 starts for the O-Tigers. Word from the organization is that Stokes decided to head in another direction. I'll be trying to touch base with Stokes later today, so check back for updates.

Posted by: Mark, 02/10/09


Outrighted Eddie Bonine (RhP) to Toledo

Analysis: Bonine cleared waivers after being removed from the 40-man roster to make room for Brandon Lyon. He will almost certainly be a cog in the Toledo rotation this summer.

Posted by: Mark, 02/04/09


Signed Justin Verlander (RHP) to one-year deal for $3.675 million

Analysis: The Tigers keep their impressive streak of avoiding arbitration with their players, coming to terms with Verlander, which wraps up all of their arbitration-eligible players for 2009.

Posted by: Wez, 02/03/09


Signed Ron Chiavacchi (RHP)

Signed Ruddy Lugo (RHP)

Analysis: Nothing major going on here, just a couple of additional arms to throw in the mix for the rotation and bullpen at Toledo. Both guys are durable arms that can eat innings at the minor league level; albeit not with tons of success. I'm not sure both will make it out of camp to be honest.

Posted by: Mark, 01/27/09


Signed Timo Perez (OF)

Agreed to 2009 contracts with Michael Hollimon (INF), Casper Wells, (OF), Dusty Ryan (C), Alfredo Figaro (RHP), Zach Simons (RHP), Kyle Bloom (LHP), and Chris Lambert (RHP)

Analysis: Perez has become well-known among Tiger fans, and he continues to succeed at Triple-A. He's not much more than depth in case of injury, but that's not a bad thing to have floating around in Toledo. This signing gives the Tigers the option of holding Wilkin Ramirez or Casper Wells back in Double-A to start the year if they are unsure of their readiness for a promotion.

Posted by: Mark, 01/26/09


Signed Scott Williamson (RHP)

Analysis: Nothing wrong with a move like this; something similar to the past signings of Matt Mantei, and the recent acquisition of Juan Rincon. Williamson has had tremendous raw stuff in the past, though his arm has never held up over his career. If he has somehow found the fountain of youth (or health), then this could be an intriguing pickup that could pay dividends as the season moves along.

Posted by: Mark, 01/26/09


Signed Brandon Lyon (RHP)

Designated Eddie Bonine (RHP) for assignment

Analysis: The much rumored deal between the Tigers and Lyon has finally come to fruition. Lyon immediately steps in as the favorite to be the Tigers' closer on Opening Day. At one-year and $4.25 million plus incentives, the Tigers have managed to bridge the gap between 2009 and 2010, when the youngsters should be ready. Bonine's day to be DFA'd was coming with the signing of additional relievers, and it wouldn't be completely shocking if a bottom tier team claimed him. He's not a star, but he's a quality starter with the ability to eat innings and keep his team in the game. If he clears waivers, Bonine will head back to Toledo for the 2009 season.

Posted by: Mark, 01/24/09


Signed Juan Rincon (RHP)

Signed Edwin Jackson (RHP)

Signed Bobby Seay (LHP)

Signed Joel Zumaya (RHP)

Signed Gerald Laird (C)

Signed Bronson Sardinha (OF)

Analysis: It's not a flashy move, but a sound move by the organization. With budget constraints and a bullpen that is clearly in flux heading into Spring Training, the Tigers haven't committed to Rincon, but instead have found a pitcher that can come in and compete for a roster slot. He's been a below average pitcher the last couple of years as he battled the injury bug, but he has some potential to be a nice member of the bullpen when healthy. Good move by the organization that simply needs options for the bullpen.

UPDATE: The Tigers avoided arbitration with Jackson ($2.2 million), Laird ($2.8 million), Seay ($1.3 million), and Zumaya ($735,000), a common theme for an organization that hasn't gone to arbitration with a player since Dombrowski's arrival. Jackson and Laird are both signed at good rates for the level of contribution they are expected to provide in 2009. Seay's contract is very reasonably considering he has been one of the team's better relievers for the last two years; and Joel Zumaya sticking in the six-figure range is a nice surprise seeing as there is no guarantee he remains healthy. Justin Verlander is the only arbitration-eligible Tiger still out there, and there are rumors circulating that there could be more than a one-year deal in the works for him.

UPDATE #2: Bronson Sardinha (Dane's brother) is a depth signing to fill an outfield role at the Double-A or Triple-A level. He's got an adequate bat and some defensive ability with a strong arm that is best suited for right field. He'll head to camp and be in the mix with Casper Wells, Wilkin Ramirez, Brent Clevlen, and Alexis Gomez as potential outfielders at Toledo. If he loses out, he probably goes down to Erie to help fill a role there.

Posted by: Mark, 01/20/09


Signed Fernando Rodney (RHP)

Signed Marcus Thames (OF)

Analysis: Two good moves by the Tigers. A one-year, $2.7 million deal for Rodney is likely less than he would have received by going through the full arbitration process; particularly as he is projected to play a significant role on this year's squad. While Thames' one-year, $2.275 million deal is also good for the Tigers, it works well for him too. The corner outfield market has yet to materialize, and Thames may not have received much of a raise; particularly with Guillen, Granderson, and Ordonez all squarely in front of him in the outfield. The Tigers still have Justin Verlander, Bobby Seay, Joel Zumaya, Gerald Laird, and Edwin Jackson that must come to terms or enter the arbitration process.

Posted by: Mark, 01/14/09


Signed Fu-Te Ni (LHP)

Analysis: Early word from sources indicate the 26-year old lefty will head into spring training with a chance to land in either Toledo or Erie, with a very good shot of seeing Detroit this year if he pitches well. Scouts indicate Ni has a high-80s fastball with some movement and some deception in his delivery, backed up by an above-average breaking ball with good bite. He controls the zone well and keeps hitters off balance. This is the second signing out of Taiwan in the last year for the Tigers, and it is good to see an increased presence in the Pacific Rim.

Posted by: Mark, 01/10/09


Signed Don Kelly (IF)

Signed Travis Phelps (RHP)

Signed Jason Miller (LHP)

Analysis: A couple of interesting moves here. The Kelly signing marks his return to the Tiger organization, but as a Double-A or Triple-A middle infielder, I'm not sure where he fits in with the likes of Dlugach, Worth, Iorg, Sizemore, Rhymes, etc. Phelps has big league experience, but was pitching in the Atlantic League last year. He's flashed good stuff in the past and could be a spring surprise anywhere from Detroit to Erie. Rounding out the signings, we may be seeing the first of Rick Knapp's influence, as Miller was a Twins organizational veteran. He pitched last year at Double-A New Britain, and he's likely to be in the competition for a slot in either Erie or Toledo in 2009.

Posted by: Mark, 01/09/09


Signed Alexis Gomez (OF)

Analysis: Gomez returns to the Tigers and is a veritable lock for the Toledo outfield. He'll likely have Wilkin Ramirez flanking with him out there, along with two to three from a crew of Clete Thomas (when healthy), Jeff Frazier, Ryan Raburn, and Casper Wells. It's a depth signing, and not one that should significantly impact the Major League roster.

Posted by: Mark, 01/07/09

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