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We may never know why the Tigers rushed Victor back from a fairly significant knee injury in February. Ultimately it may be a decision that proves costly in the 2015 pennant race.
The early season Victor Martinez wasn’t even a shadow of the hitter we have seen in Detroit. It was painful to watch his at bats and more painful to watch when he was on base.
After spending a month on the disable list and a short three game rehab stint at Toledo, he was reactivated Friday, June 19 against the New York Yankees. Not surprisingly manager Brad Ausmus placed VMart immediately back in the clean up spot putting the pressure instantaneously on his veteran slugger.
Ausmus stated in a recent article on The Freep.com, “We need a healthy Victor Martinez’s bat, not an ailing one.” Indeed we do. Why the Tigers didn’t start the season with giving VMart a chance to get healthy is w mystery.
Martinez told the Detroit News on the mystery subject, “For sure, I wish we would have taken more time,” Martinez said. “But it is what it is. It’s all over now. We are here. Let’s just worry about today and take it game by game.”
Also a mystery is what the very private Victor did in his month off to rehab. Rest? Strengthen? How fixed is he?
“I want to say I feel like last year, but I don’t really know yet. All I can tell you is that it feels better than when I went on the DL.” Martinez also told the Detroit News.
My gut tells me we haven’t seen the end of Victor’s struggles this year. My heart wants to believe he’s fixed and going to be a key contributor to the Tigers second half surge to the playoffs.