The Tigers acquired Gonzalez in late March in exchange for utility player Steve Lombardozzi, who was shipped to the Orioles less than four months after arriving in Detroit as part of the Doug Fister deal. With Lombardozzi in Baltimore, the Fister deal amounted to Detroit receiving left-handers Ian Krol and Robbie Ray plus a few weeks of Gonzalez. The Tigers had hoped the 37-year-old would serve as a capable replacement for shortstop Jose Iglesias, but his spotty defense and lack of range left much to be desired.
"We thought we'd take a little chance on it," Tigers President/CEO/General Manager Dave Dombrowski told reporters, including MLB.com's Jason Beck. "We thought it was something worth taking the gamble. As we had a chance to watch him, had a chance to get a feel, we just didn't see it getting better, so we thought, with the emphasis on defense for us at shortstop, we thought it was important to get someone who had a little bit more range."
Jon Morosi of FOX Sports notes (via Twitter) the Tigers will pay Gonzalez $1.1MM for only nine games. In that small sample size of 32 at-bats, Gonzalez slashed .167/.219/.233. For his career, Gonzalez owns a .245/.290/.395 line across 16 big league seasons.
Zach Links contributed to this post.