Dombrowski Talks Rotation, Inge

The Tigers don’t have an established fifth starter, so there’s been some speculation about their interest in potentially available pitchers around the league. However, Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski joined MLB Network Radio and said he’s pleased with the ability of the team’s internal candidates.

“You’re always looking to upgrade, but I think for us we’re really looking for one of these youngsters to grab that fifth spot,” he said. 

Right-hander Jacob Turner and left-handers Duane Below, Adam Wilk and Andy Oliver are currently competing to start behind Justin Verlander, Doug Fister, Max Scherzer and Rick Porcello. Tigers assistant GM Al Avila acknowledged last week that the Tigers will watch other teams' pitchers in case a fit emerges.

Dombrowski said Brandon Inge seems like a natural at second base, where he is in the mix for playing time along with Ryan Raburn and Ramon Santiago. The GM said Inge’s athleticism makes it seem like he’s been playing his new position for a decade.


27 Responses to Dombrowski Talks Rotation, Inge Leave a Reply

  1. EdinsonPickle 3 years ago

    I’m not too worried about the Tigers rotation. I think Turner will win the job and be a serviceable starter in his first full season.

    For the Tiger’s sake though, hopefully all that athleticism Inge possesses puts a charge into that bat of his. 

  2. One does not question Inge’s fielding ability, but something else that Raburn and Santiago both can have at certain points in time…

    • williswinning 3 years ago

      I definitely question Inge’s fielding ability.

      • ImperialStout 3 years ago

         At least being a second, he won’t throw there and miss the out, losing the game.

  3. caseyo4 3 years ago

    Turner was a little shaky his first time out, and Oliver has had two strong appearances.  I think one of the lefty’s definately has an advantage…

    • Roarof84 3 years ago

      I was thinking the same thing yesterday while listening to the game against the Braves.

  4. Santiago should have been their starting second basemen for the past 3 years.  Why do they keep trying to find spots for Inge?  I like the guy, but he isn’t a starting major leaguer.

    • $17049574 3 years ago

      I’m not sure he’d start on my beer league softball team.

    • Santiago is overexposed with more playing time.  He’s a fine fit as a utility player and defensive replacement. But he gets a lot of hype from Tigers fans despite his .249/.316/.342 career line.

  5. Two others are definitely in the running for the fifth spot in the Tigers’ rotation.  Casey Crosby, who has as much upside as any of the other four lefties, and Drew Smyly who is not yet on the roster, but may be as polished right now as any of them.  There are six pitchers vying for the last rotation spot.

    Inge’s defense shouldn’t be a problem at second base, but his hitting is a huge problem.  He can’t hit right handed pitching, period, and should not be starting in any major league lineup against a RHP.  Santiago is also weak against righties and would be okay in a platoon if he were partnered with a lefty hitter.  Raburn can hit, but has been the worst defensive second baseman in the league over the past two seasons, using UZR. 

    The second base issue should have been addressed in the off season by signing Kelly Johnson, trading for a Maicer Izturis or Orlando Hudson type of player.  The last spot in the rotation has Turner’s name on it when he is ready, but I think he’s at least a year away at just 20 years of age.  They are likely to find someone to do an adequate job in the rotation from the solid young arms that they have.  If not, they’ll make a move before the deadline.

    This team is going to M*A*S*H

    • ImperialStout 3 years ago

       Who removed my joke about using the M*A*S*H theme song as walk-up music?  Is it because of the song title?  Good grief…..

    • ImperialStout 3 years ago

       Who removed my joke about using the M*A*S*H theme song as walk-up music?  Is it because of the song title?  Good grief…..

    • Hoosierdaddy92 3 years ago

      I am hoping that they resolve the second base issue by acquiring Emilio Bonifacio from the Marlins. After his performance leading off last season, he would be the perfect fit for them at 2b and he could also be a good defensive sub at 3b and LF

      • RationalSportsFan 3 years ago

         Doubtful.  Marlins likely aren’t going to trade their starting CF.

        • Hoosierdaddy92 3 years ago

          Even if the deal involves the Marlins acquiring a better one? Austin Jackson comes to mind. If a trade like that were to go down, I could see the Tigers signing one of the good free agent CF after this season like Victorino, Bourn, or Upton to replace AJax.

          • It sure would be nice having an actual lead off hitter hitting lead off.  AJax is not a lead off hitter.  Granderson wasn’t either, but at least they got some power along with all the strikeouts.  AJax just has the strikeouts. 

          • Hoosierdaddy92 3 years ago

            I absolutely agree. AJax strikes out far too much to even be considered for the job. I love the guy’s defense in CF as much as the next guy, but he belongs at the bottom of the order, where he can continue to swing freely. On the Marlins, he would be able to do that with Reyes the obvious leadoff hitter.  I am satisfied with the sample size Bonifacio provided last year in the leadoff spot to say he is for real and should be leading off on just about any team besides the Marlins. Having a lead-off hitter at 2b would be filling two desperate needs for the Tigers. I wish the Tigers would try to make it happen. How many teams can get 40 Sbs out of 2b? I know he hasn’t played much there, but it is his natural position and at 5’ll 200, it’s not like he’s outgrown the position.

        • Hoosierdaddy92 3 years ago

          Even if the deal involves the Marlins acquiring a better one? Austin Jackson comes to mind. If a trade like that were to go down, I could see the Tigers signing one of the good free agent CF after this season like Victorino, Bourn, or Upton to replace AJax.

  6. weaselpuppy 3 years ago

    That 5th spot will be by committee with Crosby/Smyly for half a year….Turner needs at least half a year on the farm…Smyly is more advanced, Crosby  has the highest ceiling and Oliver has the highest ERA…if they can spin him for a  C+ prospect SS or 2b by showcasing him in ST that’s awesome….Inge isn’t the issue….it’s whether Raburn hits in April…if no, they may have to put that fat geisha stepping clown DY2 in Lf instead of DH where he belongs….love his bat, but he’s the worst LF since Manny…

    93-94 wins and a real shot at the WS…..

     

  7. Giraffe Monsoon 3 years ago

    Good athletes who are catchers commonly make the switch to 2nd base with ease.
    Look at Craig Biggio and Neil Walker.

  8. unbiasedhomer 3 years ago

    Inge “seems like a natural” at a position he played as a kid all the way up through high school and college.  Knock me over with a feather…

  9. ImperialStout 3 years ago

    That’s a lot of white, American pitchers. 

  10. $1742854 3 years ago

    Say what you want about Inge, but the guy is the consummate team player. Lot of respect from this Twins fan.

  11. ImperialStout 3 years ago

    1.  He’s gotten good reviews so far, and a good defensive 3B doesn’t mean you’ll win a pennant. He won’t be great, I’ll admit that.  But it wont determine their fate.  You’re saying they’re better off with Inge playing 3rd?  PUH-LEASE!
    2. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!
    3. Yeah, because the Yankees having Phil Hughes as #5 is ruining their chances entirely. You only really need a 4-man rotation in the playoffs. And why is it always Matt Garza who is brought in to fill this hole?  You’re just reciting trade rumor lines.

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