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Applicants must be:
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Hometown? Farmington Hills
Marital Status? Single
What High School did you attend? University of Detroit Jesuit
College? Michigan State
What is your Favorite sport to watch on TV and your favorite sport to attend in person? TV - hockey; Person - baseball
Who is your favorite actor or actress? Denzel Washington
Bases loaded, two outs in the bottom of the ninth of the Game Seven of the World Series and your team is down one run...Which active baseball player do you want at the plate? Albert Pujols
Who is your favorite cartoon character? Homer Simpson
What is your favorite national sports moment? Wasn’t alive for most of the great ones, so it has to be Landon Donovan’s goal vs Algeria in 2010 World Cup … gave USA their first group win since 1930
What is your favorite Detroit sports moment? Magglio Ordonez walk-off home run in 2006 ALCS
If you could change a rule in sports, what would it be? Clearly define the blocking/charging call in college basketball
What Detroiter do you admire most? Mike Ilitch
College or Pro Sports? Definitely college
If you could invite three people to dinner, living or dead, who would they be? Babe Ruth, Nick Lidstrom and Peyton Manning … that should be interesting
Favorite broadcaster of all time? Doc Emrick, Bob Costas, Jim Nantz … I can go on and on
Most embarrassing moment on the air? None … yet
"For lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land."
Photo: Getty Images
Believe it or not, it's almost time for baseball season. But before we gorge ourselves with hot dogs, peanuts and those yard-long slushie drinks, Dave Dombrowski, Jim Leyland and the Detroit Tigers' staff have decisions to make. Who will be the team's fifth starter? What about the second left-hander in the bullpen? And who's going to be the infielder off the bench?
Here are the locks to make the team:
|1. Jackson||Pena (C)||Benoit|
|2. Hunter||Kelly (OF/1B/3B)||Coke|
|3. Cabrera||Tuiasosopo (OF/1B/3B)||Dotel|
|5. Martinez||1. Verlander|
|6. Dirks||2. Scherzer|
|7. Peralta||3. Fister|
|8. Avila||4. Sanchez|
|9. Infante||5. Porcello|
Yes, Matt Tuiasosopo is going to make the opening day roster. The organization signed him as a minor league free agent in December, and extended him an invitation to spring training. All he's done is hit .327, with a .411 OBP and .694 slugging percentage through March 25. He has hit four home runs and 10 RBI in 25 spring appearances. After the Tigers sent back Jeff Kobernus to the Washington Nationals (because he was a Rule 5 draft pick, he must either make the 25-man roster, be sent back to the original team, or the two teams must agree to a trade), they gave that right-handed hitting outfield spot to Tuiasosopo.
That leaves four spots up in the air, probably three pitchers and one hitter.
The final man on the bench is between Danny Worth and Ramon Santiago. Both have been good this spring, with Worth hitting .316 and Santiago at .294. I think that the Tigers simply like Ramon Santiago more, hence his two stints with the team. Santiago is also due to make more money ($2.1 million) than Worth (about $500,000). Santiago is also a more comfortable fit at shortstop, a position where the Tigers do not have a ton of confidence in the starter.
Fighting for those final bullpen spots are Darin Downs, Brayan Villarreal, Al Alburquerque and Drew Smyly. Reports today out of Lakeland say that Drew Smyly will start in the bullpen, where he finished last season. That gives the team two lefties, with Smyly primarily occupying the long relief role.
Darin Downs has been one of the team's best pitchers this spring, posting a 0.71 ERA, 0.95 WHIP and 13 strikeouts in 12.2 innings. Since Smyly will likely be the emergency starter and "pitcher-who-comes-in-the-5th-inning-after-Rick-Porcello-gets-shelled", might they take Downs north to be that second left-hander?
The final spot is then between Villarreal and Alburquerque. Villarreal hasn't allowed a run in his last five games this spring. Meanwhile, Alburquerque gave up six runs in two innings againts Washington and Houston last week, and skipper Jim Leyland said his command isn't where it should be. For a guy who only pitched in eight games last season, is coming off an injury and is having command issues in the spring, it doesn't look like Alburquerque will start the season in Detroit.
Final verdict: Santiago beats out Worth for the infield job. Downs, Smyly and Villarreal join the bullpen.
From The Big Lead:
"Chris Webber is still the best. TNT diminishing Webber’s role in the studio in favor of Shaq might have been the worst idea since Greedo shooting first. Here, C-Webb breaks down some footage from Tuesday’s Pacers – Magic game on NBA TV that shows a young couple sharing ice cream."
From The Big Lead:
"Fernando Rodney pulled out a banana plantain during the Dominican Republic’s introduction before Monday’s World Baseball Classic game against the Netherlands. According to Yahoo!’s Jeff Passan, it is Rodney’s “lucky plantain.” And it speaks to him:
It had a message for him, too, because what good is a piece of produce if it doesn’t talk to you? 'If you keep me close to you,' the plantain said, according to Rodney, who did not indicate whether it spoke Spanish or English or maybe Fruitish, 'you’re going to get the win.'"
Seeing what Bruce Rondon has done this spring, do you secretly wish you had Fernando Rodney back to close games for the Detroit Tigers? Remember he had 48 saves with an ERA of 0.60 last year with the Tampa Bay Rays.
"North Platte Community College’s girls basketball team, the Lady Knights, celebrated winning their district championship by attempting to douse their coach in Gatorade. Unfortunately, the girls could only manage to soak coach Richard Thurin from the waist down."
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