Tigers Minor League Wrap 6/5/07

Syracuse 0 Toledo 6
Ron Chiavacci pitched 6 shutout innings and allowed only 3 hits and 3 walks while fanning 2. Roman Colon pitched 2 scoreless innings, but allowed 2 hits and 3 walks. Ryan Raburn had 2 hits and walk while Jack Hannahan had 2 walks and a hit.

Portland 5 Erie 8
Jon Connolly was lit up for 5 runs on 9 hits in just 3 2/3 innings. Kody Kirkland homered, singled, and walked twice. Jeff Larish added a homer and 3 RBI. Mike Hollimon, Erick Almonte, and Matt Joyce all had mutli-hit games.

St. Lucie 15 Lakeland 8
Lucas French allowed 9 runs, only 4 of which were earned in 3 innings. He was touched for 8 hits, 2 of which were homers. Cameron Maybin was 3 for 5 with no strikeouts. Mike Hernandez doubled and homered. Wilkin Ramirez tripled, singled, and walked twice.

Fort Wayne 2 West Michigan 11
Brennan Boesch, Jeff Kunkel, Brandon Timm, and Audy Ciriaco all had 2 hits. Jonah Nickerson allowed 9 hits, but only 1 run in 6 2/3 innings.

Minors News


  1. Mike R

    June 6, 2007 at 4:10 am

    Since we’ve got Trahern, who can max out as a No. 3 starter or become a solid 4-5 guy and we’ve got Miller on the way and some raw talent like De La Cruz, what are the possibilities of trading Nate Robertson? I’m not saying this because he’s been terrible the last month, but he’s a LHP that can throw low to mid 90’s, plus breaking stuff and dominates LH’s, especially big time LH bats like Ortiz, Thome, and Hafner.

    Hypothetically, if Miller continues to dominate Double-A, moves to Triple-A for a couple weeks in early July and does well, wouldn’t it make it easier to make a deal? I know we wouldn’t be trading Nate Rob (that’s my guess) in the middle of the year but the braves most likely are going to deal Saltalamacchia, which would solve our lack of C depth. He could go to Toledo for the rest of the season, next year if he shows a capability of being decent at 1B (which is possible) he could be the answer at 1B for 08. He’s hitting .293 in just 41 AB’s in Atlanta and not getting much regular playing time. Rumors i’ve seen were Robertson and a prospect for Salty. It’s worth some thought, but is hingent on Miller/other guys progressions the rest of this year through the system.

  2. Mike R

    June 6, 2007 at 4:15 am

    Also, John Paul Morosi of the Free Press suggested looking at the Rangers for bullpen help is possible (Gagne, Otsuka):

    “Trade with Texas on horizon?

    The relationship between Rodney’s effectiveness and Jones’ ultimate success calls to mind one of Leyland’s statements from earlier in the season.

    “If we don’t get Rodney straightened out, our bullpen’s in a little bit of trouble,” Leyland said in April, when asked about Rodney’s early struggles. “It’s that simple, unless somebody else steps up.”

    So, if Rodney falters, do the Tigers have “somebody else” in mind?

    Initially, the “somebody else” was supposed to be veteran Jose Mesa, signed in December to a one-year, $2.5-million contract.

    Yet Mesa had a 12.34 ERA after two months and was released Sunday.

    Help would not be easy to find on the trade market, especially this early in the year — one reason Detroit has considered signing free agent and erstwhile retiree Troy Percival.

    One intriguing trade partner could be the Texas Rangers. The Tigers pursued Texas left-hander C.J. Wilson during the off-season, but right-handers Akinori Otsuka and Eric Gagne could be even more appealing now. However, the teams have yet to engage in any substantive talks.

    Maroth could be bait

    Apart from the trade market, the Tigers will likely make key decisions within the next month, on their own rehabilitating pitchers. Among them, Kenny Rogers appears closest to making an impact.

    Rogers has been out all season after undergoing surgery to repair a blood clot, but he is expected to throw a simulated game today. Leyland said Rogers could pitch in a game by late June.

    Rogers’ replacement, Chad Durbin, has quietly become one of the most consistent starters on the team, and is now tied with Jeremy Bonderman and Justin Verlander for the team lead with five victories. Durbin ended the team’s three-game losing streak Saturday and is 5-0 with a 3.06 ERA in his last eight starts.

    If Detroit officials decide that Durbin must remain in the rotation after Rogers’ return, then they could consider trading left-hander Mike Maroth. The Tigers have made Maroth available in recent trade discussions, one NL executive said Sunday.

    The team will also face a decision on the future of reliever Roman Colon before the end of the month. Colon’s rehabilitation assignment at Triple-A Toledo, which began May 27, can last a maximum of 30 days. Once that period concludes, the Tigers must either add Colon to their 25-man roster, or send him back to the minor leagues.

    Colon, though, would need to clear waivers to remain in Toledo, because he is out of minor league options.

    Many of Detroit’s other relief pitchers — including Tim Byrdak, Jason Grilli, Wil Ledezma and Bobby Seay — are also out of options, which could factor into the club’s decisions during the weeks ahead.

    After a three-game series in Texas, the Tigers will play 15 of their next 18 games against National League opponents, a stretch that should have a significant impact on their record at the All-Star break. Detroit excelled in interleague play last season (15-3) but may have a tougher draw this year.

    The Tigers’ next two NL opponents, the New York Mets and Milwaukee Brewers, lead their respective divisions, and their last interleague series is against Atlanta, another of the NL’s best clubs.

    Little about this season has been easy — the schedule, least of all. Yet, Detroit is, in one sense, where it was one year ago, high in the standings and preparing for what should be a long, intriguing summer.

    “The only thing I try to strive for is to go into September playing for something,” Leyland said. “If we do that, I’ll be happy. If we don’t, I’ll be disappointed.””

  3. Chris Y.

    June 6, 2007 at 12:23 pm

    Mike R, I like your thinking. I think Maroth or Nate are expendable at this point. I really like Nate and wouldn’t want him to leave, but Miller looks almost ready and Trahern just might be right behind him.

    Salty would be a great pick-up at the trade deadline if we could make it work. We need a C for the future, plus his bat is MLB ready and he can play 1B.

    We are in a situation similar to Minny the past couple years, with a lot of high-level pitching talent in the Minors, a couple young aces, and some aged and/or serviceable back-enders. I look at it like this: Over the next couple years, we WILL transition to a rotation that consists of some combination of Bonderman, Verlander, Miller, and two of the following De La Cruz, Trahern, Durbin, Jurrjens, (or some dark horse, Colon?, Vasquez?). How quickly that happens will be determined mostly by value and team need. Rogers is likely here until he retires, but Maroth and Nate are probably on the outside looking in with the talent we have available, their age, and their value as solid back-end starters. And this transition won’t all be roses, some guys will flame out, others may not reach the heights set for them. But it doesn’t mean management should wait and have these key transition decisions made for them. KEY: We need to deal these guys while they are still of value to other teams.