After more than a month of missed time due to an ankle injury, the Detroit Tigers will again have their starting second baseman back. The team announced today that Omar Infante has been activated from the disabled list. Hernan Perez has been optioned to the minor leagues to make room on the active roster.
#Tigers have recalled Omar Infante. Hernan Perez to Toledo.
— Mario Impemba (@mario_impemba) August 12, 2013
Perez showed some positive signs in his second big legue cup of coffee, but he clearly needs more playing time in the upper minor leagues before he can be considered to be ready to face major league pitching on a more regular basis. Ramon Santiago also was non-terrible as a fill-in – he’s posted a .333 OBP since Infante went down with the injury – but Detroit missed the plus bat that that Infante provides. I wouldn’t be surprised, however, if Infante got more than the occasional off-day down the stretch to make sure that his ankle is all the way healed before we get to crunch time.
Perhaps the most interesting portion of this roster move is that Perez is being sent to Toledo, not Erie where he played the entire season before receiving the call to Detroit. AAA is quite obviously the natural step below the major leagues – so he didn’t need to be sent down to AA – but I was thinking that he might rejoint he SeaWolves as they make their run into the Eastern League playoffs. Minor league championships are not a big part of the big picture, but such runs can be beneficial to young players. Toledo is in no sort of position to participate in the postseason, so this could be a sign that Perez will definitely be a September call up. I think there was always a good chance of that happening, but I wasn’t sure the organization would want to snatch him away from Erie right before they began their playoffs.
Another reason for his assignment to Toledo could simply be the proximity to Detroit. If the team isn’t convinced that Infante is 100%, they might want their #1 option close at hand should a re-injury occur. At any rate, the time in Toledo should be valueable for Perez as he continues to develop as a future option for the club in the middle of the infield.
Infante will start right away tonight.
Omar Infante returns to the #Tigers from the DL and will bat seventh while playing 2nd base tonight.
— Bobby Nightengale (@nightengalejr) August 12, 2013