Rosenthal On Tigers, Castillo, Astros

Blue Jays' rookie third baseman Brett Lawrie has been raking this spring but the 21-year-old might not start the year in the majors, writes Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  The club might send him to the minors to work on his defense – and to prevent him from becoming eligible for a fourth year of arbitration.  Here's more from Rosenthal..

  • One scout following the Tigers says the team is deep enough in young outfielders to possibly move one for a starting pitcher.  Right now, Brennan Boesch, Clete Thomas, Casper Wells, and Andy Dirks are all vying for reserve spots.  Wells appears to be a lock to make the big league roster as he is the only right-handed hitter of the bunch and plays all three outfield positions.
  • The Marlins are talking about signing second baseman Luis Castillo once he clears waivers, but they also have in-house options.  The club could decide to go with Emilio Bonifacio at second and Omar Infante at third if they choose to demote rookie third baseman Matt Dominguez.
  • If the Astros go with Carlos Lee over Brett Wallace at first base they would like to add a left-handed hitting outfielder to platoon with Jason Michaels.  However, the club is at the payroll limit and the team's greater need is a replacement for catcher Jason Castro.

29 Responses to Rosenthal On Tigers, Castillo, Astros Leave a Reply

  1. Jays All The Way 4 years ago

    I know spring training isn’t supposed to say too much but Lawrie is looking pretty good offensively and even defensively over at third base

    • His defense has really been stand out this season. He has done almost everything right this spring.

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        While I agree, he has looked pretty decent at third.

        I still agree with starting him in Vegas, there’s just no reason for the Jays to have him skip AAA in a non contend year.

        • But what is to be gained by sending him to AAA? Seems like I would rather have a young player go through their ML growing pains during a non-contend year.

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            Well luckily the jays will have another non contend year in 2012 to allow that to happen..

            Brett’s only had 2 years of professional ball under his belt. He’s been playing 3rd base on grass in ST not turf. If you start him at third and he struggles either offensively or defense, moving him down could ruin his confidence..

            I’d start him at Vegas. Because of Bautista’s versatility, essentially any injury to an OF corner spot or jbau himself would result in a call up.. Or perhaps Rivera can get off to a decent start and can be flipped midseason to allow for Bautista to move back to the outfield and Lawrie to third.

  2. 5_tool_MiLB_fool 4 years ago

    lawrie, like dominguez, simply isn’t ready to get his cup of coffee yet. They both can be good defensively (especially dominguez) but neither has done anything special in the minors with a bat.

    • What are you talking about? Most everyone in the Jays camp all agree that Lawrie’s bat is Big league ready. There were concerns regarding his defense, but I think most of those have been alleviated. There only appear to be two motivations to send Lawrie: 1) let Rivera build trade value, so they can move him, and 2) delay the start of his service time to avoid super two (though I think the 1st is actually the pressing consideration).

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        Jays just announced Rzep will be moved to the bullpen

        So now with another good arm moved in to the mix, I wonder if a trade could be around the corner.

        If the rotation is Romero, Morrow, Cecil, Litsch(or Reyes), Drabek

        Bullpen: for sures. Francisco, Dotel, Camp, Frasor, Rauch

        maybes: Purcey, Rzep, Villanueva, Cordero, Janssen, Carlson

        The 3 cut could easily fill roles on other teams major league rosters. Hopefully a trade is on the way.

        • vilifyingforce 4 years ago

          Franky to visit Dr. Death (James Andrews). He could be done so that opens up another spot. And AA has said he might go with 8 in the pen to start things out.

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            Ya I heard, that blows if Francisco is done for the year.

            but lets wait to hear what the good doctor says before we cross that bridge.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      if by nothing special in the minors you mean that Lawrie had the most total bases in all of AA as a 20 year old, then yes nothing special.

      • 5_tool_MiLB_fool 4 years ago

        i am sorry. i didn’t realize the course of a AA season was as long as the MLB. I also didnt realize that an average of around .280 in the minors will translate just fine into the big leagues due to ‘total bases’ accumulated.

        well thats just fine with me. I can’t wait to see this 21 year old phenom’s name all over AL ROY ballots as he can do just anything right now.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          nice flip on your argument..

          but neither has done anything special in the minors with a bat.

          Thats what you said and I just proved you wrong. Your argument wasn’t that minor league success doesn’t always translate in to ROY honours, it was that success didn’t even come yet.

          and you look even more foolish because you just brought up batting average?? seriously

          try this


          with 36 doubles, 16 triples and 8 home runs in 609 plate appearances.

          609 PA is about what a mlb player would get in a full season, so your comment about AA not being as long is a weak argument as well

          Anything else?

  3. Clete Thomas is the one you would like to trade but the less tradable. No options lefts , recovering from an injury and with less upside

    • ballmich 4 years ago

      Clete’s uncle reports that he does in fact have an option remaining. Option or not, I still think he makes the major league team.

  4. JacksTigers 4 years ago

    I would love to trade Andy Dirks and/or Casper Wells for a starter. I’d throw in Ryan Strieby too if it helped get a deal done. I would want a lefty in return so we can move Coke back to the pen where he belongs and can dominate. Maybe talk to the Rays about James Sheilds. He might be a little more expensive but we could really use another starter. The Rays have some depth in the rotation and could perhaps use an outfielder so that Damon and Rameriez can platoon as the DH.

    • Pawsdeep 4 years ago

      Coke looks like he will make the transition very well. His stuff is all there to be a starter–I think he will be in the rotation for good.

  5. baseballdude 4 years ago

    if the tigers trade for a starter it wont be until the trade deadline in my opinion

    • Pawsdeep 4 years ago

      Agreed. From what I’ve seen this spring it looks like they won’t even need to trade for one; there are plenty of minor league options who can do the job as adequately is any one who would possibly be on the trading block.

  6. Rosenthal must have needed some filler… first as-if there is any hint that Wallace won’t be starting in HOU, and second as-if KC isn’t also looking for catching help.

  7. Motor_City_Bombshell 4 years ago

    The tigers aren’t making a trade for a starter right away. It looks all but obvious that the tigers are sticking with their starting five and going to use their minor leaguers before they consider trading for a starting pitcher. After spring training it appears as if they are deeper in pitching than most thought, and they are going to sink or swim with what they have until they absolutely have to deal for a starter

  8. Backup_Slider 4 years ago

    Rosenthal’s analysis of the Astros’ 1B and LF situation is about 2-3 weeks outdated.

    Wallace is hitting almost .400 with 9 extra-base hits and 14 RBI. Lee is making only his second spring appearance at 1B today and it’s a split-squad game to boot.

  9. stroh 4 years ago

    I think the national media including Ken Rosenthal is just plain stupid regarding the Astros. This team went 59-52 the last 111 games of 2010, and has become better in the offseason with the additions of Bill Hall and Clint Barmes. I’m hearing predictions of 65 win seasons and comparisons to the Pirates which make absolutely no sense. In addition, the idiocy of the national media including Rosenthal is highly apparent when suggesting that Wallace who is tearing the cover off the ball in spring training and has hit throughout his minor league career somehow will be supplanted by Carlos Lee at 1B. That’s not going to happen. Bottom line is that the Astros have 6 players who have 20+HR power in their lineup: Carlos Lee, Hunter Pence, Chris Johnosn, Bill Lee, Brett Wallace and Clint Barmes. And their rotation of Brett Myers, Wandy Rodriguez, J.A. Happ, Bud Norris and Nelson Figueroa is solid. This team will win between 85-90 games this year and give the Cards, Reds and Brewers a run for their money. End of story.

    • Backup_Slider 4 years ago

      Now hold on a minute, stroh. I, too, am an Astro fan but this club has little to no shot at winning 85-90 games. At this stage of his career, Wallace should hit about 15HRs with a ton of doubles. At sea level, Barmes is a 10 to 15 HR hitter. Replacing Keppinger and Manzella/Sanchez with Hall and Barmes adds power, but weakens the team substantially in contact ability and defense. The greatest weakness of the offense is the inability to draw a walk. The lineup walks so infrequently and has so few high-average hitters that a disproportionate percentage of their HRs figure to be solo shots. Thus, I wouldn’t expect their averagish team HR power to translate into many runs. Losing Castro will stall his offensive development and thus have some impact on the team long-term, but replacing him with Quintero figures to have little to no impact on the team in 2011 (another area where Rosenthal’s analysis is flawed). The starting pitching should be solid, though probably not quite as strong as it was down the stretch in 2010 (even though Jordan Lyles may already be the 3rd best pitcher on the staff). They lack a traditional swing-and-miss closer but should be able to field a respectable to above-average bullpen, at least from the right-armed side of it. I forecast them to win 74 +/- 3 games, and especially since they figure to be in deal veterans mode throughout the season.

      The final NL Central standings for 2011 should look like this:
      1. Reds (their deep farm system is the x factor that allows them to win this division easily – they can add or trade quality prospects)
      2. Cardinals
      3. Brewers (this team isn’t in the class of the Reds and Cardinals- they’re more like the Cubs – good starting pitching, a shaky bullpen outside of the closer, lots of offensive strikeouts, and lots of bad defenders)
      4. Cubs
      5. Astros
      6. Pirates (this franchise needs a new owner even more than the Astros do)

  10. darkstorm97 4 years ago

    I agree. Poor Pirates fans. I understand building through the farm system, but they just don’t spend any money at all.

  11. Pawsdeep 4 years ago

    This spring has shown me that the tigers are very deep in outfielders and quality young pitchers. I highly doubt they would move one of those studs in the outfield considerig at years end there may be a spot or two open and they are stacked in prospect pitching, which is what I am sure they would get for one of those outfielders.

    It wouldn’t make sense move any of those guys for something you don’t need and already traded away or refused to resign. Those ponies in the outfield will be in Toledo or Detroit all year.

  12. stroh 4 years ago

    Dear Backup Slider,
    I beg to differ with you. Barmes and Hall upgrade the team both offensively and defensively. Both have much more pop (HR power) than Manzella and Keppinger and both have more range — ask any major league scout, manager or GM. The non-traditional closer they have (Brandon Lyon) saved 25 games in half a season during which he closed. I just don’t see how a team that played 7 games over .500 ball for the majority of last year (after they lost the prima donnas in Oswalt and Berkman) is suddenly going to only win 74 games and play 14 games under .500. Bottom line I think the Reds, Cards and Brewers are more talented than the Astros at this time and all are capable of winning 90+ games, however I just don’t see the Astros as any less talented then they were for the majority of last year – as a matter of fact, the younger players on the team Michael Bourn, Chris Johnson, Brett Wallace, Bud Norris, Mark Melancon etc should be better with the experience they got last year. If you go with the national media, they’ve always downplayed the Astros — when we were having a string of 13 winning seasons in 14 years, I think the majority of those years the Astros were forecasted to win anywhere from 10-15 games less than they did, even though they had Biggio, Bagwell, Berkman, Oswalt, Clemens etc. But that didn’t stop the wacko predictions from year to year, and I see no reason the east coast biased media should think any differently now.

  13. ballmich 4 years ago

    Rosenthal’s comments regarding the Tigers make little sense, other than it’s just some stuff he’s recycling from a conversation with a scout. Albeit, apparently a scout that doesn’t have any idea what the Tigers organization looks like.

    The Tigers have their starting five, they’re not looking to replace any of these guys. And there’s been no injury. If they did need a SP, they’d look internally and almost certainly call up Oliver. He had a great ST and is a legitimate prospect who is major league ready.

    As far as the OF’s: Wells, Boesch & Thomas all have options. Dirks isn’t even on the 40 man roster. They don’t have to trade any of them. With Magglio in RF and Raburn in LF, I’m pretty sure the Tigers will opt to hold onto their OF depth for the time being. Two of these guys will make the roster as reserves, the other two will pay every day at AAA. It’s a nice situation to have.

  14. JacksTigers 4 years ago

    The same can be said for you, buddy.

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