Jim Leyland Rolls out B-Squad for Finale Against Orioles
By John Parent
It’s an annual rite of being a Tigers fan to second-guess the lineups that Jim Leyland runs out there. Leyland is famous (or infamous, rather) for his “Sunday Lineups” in which he gives regular guys a day off for seemingly no good reason. Tonight, he’s gotten into the swing of things on a Thursday instead.
There will be no Brandon Inge, no Magglio Ordonez, and no Jhonny Peralta to back starter Brad Penny this evening. In their stead, the Tigers will employ Don Kelly, Brennan Boesch, and Ramon Santiago. Or maybe it’s that Ryan Raburn is replacing Ordonez since Boesch has seen much more action this year than Raburn has. Either way, both are in the lineup tonight.
Leyland did make one wise move in keeping Alex Avila in the lineup after previously saying that Victor Martinez would likely catch tonight’s game. Avila all but assured his playing time today with his great game last night.
Typically, Leyland likes to get all of his players at least one start within the season’s first week. Casper Wells, who made his debut last night as a pinch-runner for Ordonez, still hasn’t gotten into the starting lineup and it doesn’t look like he will anytime soon, as the Tigers home opener tomorrow will feature their regular lineup for certain. I am a bit surprised that Wells didn’t get the call tonight, as Austin Jackson has been struggling a bit early on. Leyland may just be trying to get him going by leaving him out there, however.
The batting order is after the jump.
- CF Austin Jackson
- 2B Will Rhymes
- RF Brennan Boesch
- 1B Miguel Cabrera
- DH Victor Martinez
- 3B Don Kelly
- LF Ryan Raburn
- C Alex Avila
- SS Ramon Santiago
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