Dontrelle Willis makes Lakeland Debut

Dontrelle Willis, optioned to the minors a couple weeks ago, made his first appearance for the Lakeland Flying Tigers. The results, at least from looking at the game log, were mixed were mixed.

Willis ended up walking 3 in his two innings of work. His first inning was messy with a hit and a run mixed in. But in his second inning he retired the next 3 hitters after a leadoff walk. It wasn’t the dominant outing that you hope for, but I don’t know that it is was a disaster either.

Daytona Top 7th

  • Pitcher Change: Dontrelle Willis replaces Duane Below.
  • Blake Lalli grounds out, shortstop Cale Iorg to first baseman Michael Bertram.
  • Robinson Chirinos walks.
  • Steve Clevenger singles on a ground ball to left fielder Pedro Cotto. Robinson Chirinos to 2nd.
  • Ryan Harvey walks. Robinson Chirinos to 3rd. Steve Clevenger to 2nd.
  • Russ Canzler flies into a force out, right fielder Brennan Boesch to shortstop Cale Iorg. Robinson Chirinos scores. Steve Clevenger to 3rd. Ryan Harvey out at 2nd. Russ Canzler to 1st.
  • Darwin Barney grounds into a force out, shortstop Cale Iorg to second baseman Carmelo Jaime. Russ Canzler out at 2nd.

Daytona Top 8th

  • Jonathan Mota walks.
  • James Adduci pops out to catcher James Skelton in foul territory.
  • Ty Wright flies out to left fielder Pedro Cotto.
  • Blake Lalli flies out to left fielder Pedro Cotto.

11 thoughts on “Dontrelle Willis makes Lakeland Debut”

  1. As far as I’m concerned, Willis can stay down in Lakeland until September, if need be. I feel pretty confident with Bonine in there and we’ve got Lopez down in Toledo getting stretched out to fill in in case of injury or if one of the young guys struggle. There is no need to rush Willis and the worst thing would be if he were to come back and pitch like he did earlier this month. Dontrelle Willis has become a prospect for the Tigers (albeit expensive one) and all we should hope for is that he is ready for 2009.

  2. We can all wait until Willis is ready to positively contribute.
    It’s nice to get a good long look at some of these guys that might make the team next year in some fashion, since Jones, Rogers, and Fossum probably won’t be around next year. So that’s 3 spots we might have to fill.

    Bonine looks dependable. Cruceta and Lopez will be back up sometime this season, probably September.

    Whatever happened to Bazardo is the my question? I thought he was the best prospect we had out of the Jurrjens, Miller, Bazardo bunch from last year. I was glad that we kept Bazardo over the others. Now I’m like wtf happened?

  3. Boy, 3 walks in 2 innings at Class A doesn’t look too encouraging to me. I guess I’d rather see him giving up some hits but not walking anybody – he’s supposed to be (re-)learning how to throw strikes, right? Well, it’s still early.

    Bazardo is doing poorly at Toledo – 6.05 ERA in 61 IP (10 starts).

    Lopez has started twice – so far so good – 11IP 5H 0BB 14K. Maybe they are on to something, but it is early here as well.

  4. I just realized something really ironic. Isn’t it funny that Bonine (who never walks anyone) replaced Walk-Train?

  5. Billfer, any idea what Willis had been doing in Lakeland up to this outing? Is he just working with the coaching staff on his mechanics and throwing on a timeline? Is he also working on his conditioning? Was it ever confirmed that his conditioning was substandard, and that it was a contributing factor to his struggles? I suppose that may not be something the team would want to publicize if so, so the question for anyone there woulld have to be – does he look any thinner?
    I really can’t help but think that Miguel Cabrera also could lose a considerable amount of body fat. Regardless of how it might help his overall effectiveness – which I believe it would – especially in the field, it seems that having a player with a significant salary and getting significant playing time setting such a poor example isn’t the best scenario for team success. Aren’t the best teams the ones where the best players are setting the example of hard work. Am I off base on Cabrera’s conditioning? Is he already working harder than everyone else?Is he also eating 3 times as much as everyone else? It seems like he often loses his balance when stretching for throws at first and winds up on all fours. Maybe I’m just jealous because he reminds me of me, except I’m not making millions of dollars.

  6. Despite all my probing, unless someone knows an insider, there hasn’t been much news regarding Dontrelle until his pitching stint. I’m only speculating here but maybe they’re working with him just like any other rookie to get him back on track which might be this year and/or may be not.

    Miggy just doesn’t look fat to me. Big, yea, but not fat. For that kind of money, they won’t let him get fat for very long.

  7. funny that some people look at Cabrearra as fat…he is a BIG GUY….would you call Prince Fielder or David Ortiz or Jim Thome fat…these are just big guys…we see so much “skinny” on tv we forget what a large person looks like

  8. I am going to go out on a limb and say that it might not have been the smartest idea in the world to give Willis an extra year on his contract before he even threw a pitch in Detroit.

  9. I would call Prince Fielder fat, yes. Fielder also outweighs Miggy by probably 40+ pounds. Prince came up at a robust 260 (and just 6′).

    Miggy is just a big dude. Albert Pujols-like big.

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