After splitting today’s doubleheader with the Astros, the Tigers announced that they are keeping 27th man Zack Short on the active roster and optioning Isaac Paredes to Triple-A. Paredes, 22, was given an opportunity to fill in for Niko Goodrum when the latter was placed on the injured list.
With a 17.1 percent walk rate and 14.3 percent strikeout rate in a small sample of 35 plate appearances, Paredes has shown a solid, contact-first approach. The bottom line results haven’t been there yet, however, as he slashed .143/.286/.321 in that time. His .130 BABIP suggests some poor luck, and his batted ball numbers (such as exit velocity, hard-hit percentage, and barrel rate) are a touch below average. Paredes will head back to the minors with hopes of producing more solid contact in regular playing time at Toledo.
Short, 26, is having a stellar season at the plate, both in Triple-A (.132 wRC+ in 124 plate appearances) and with the parent club (143 wRC+ in 16 plate appearances). The former Cubs’ farmhand can play all over the infield while filling Paredes’ role as a right-handed complement to switch-hitting infielders Jeimer Candelario and Willi Castro. Short may not have the long-term promise that Paredes does, but he has impressed in short-run samples this season, earning himself an opportunity.
Moving to the outfield, the Tigers have another roster decision coming soon, writes Evan Woodbery of Mlive.com. With Derek Hill and Victor Reyes close to returning from the injured list, the Tigers will have a surplus of outfielders. The most obvious move would be to activate Hill and option Reyes back to Triple-A, but Woodbery wonders whether Detroit might find this the right time to cut ties with Nomar Mazara.
Though still just 26, Mazara is seemingly running out of chances to prove himself a Major League hitter. After struggling through the shortened season with the White Sox, Mazara has put up similar production this year. Slashing .201/.273/.317 through 154 plate appearances, Mazara doesn’t have any trade value, and on a one-year, $1.75MM contract, he can be cut loose without significant financial consequence.
If the Tigers don’t see Mazara as a part of their future, there’s certainly some logic to allocating his playing time elsewhere. The Tigers can pull from a pool of outfielders that includes Robbie Grossman, Akil Baddoo, Daz Cameron, Hill, Reyes, JaCoby Jones, Christin Stewart, Jacob Robson. Infielders Castro and Goodrum (when he returns from the injured list) are also capable of playing the outfield.