Where Do The Tigers Go After News On Rogers?
Rogers, obviously, means a lot to the Tigers. He being out at least three months to start the season is a huge blow. First of all, it points out the value of pitching depth. You can never, ever have enough pitching. It's entirely possible, the Tigers will lose a second starter - or more - for stretches of this season because of ailments. It's just the way it works sometimes. It also points out the importance of getting Andrew Miller ready as quickly as possible. He needs some experience in the minor leagues. That was evident last season, and when I saw him throw during spring training. But it shouldn't be that much. He is a special talent and should move quickly.
The Tigers decision to put Chad Durbin into the starting rotation in place of Rogers, is a curious one.
Durbin had a good season at Toledo in 2006, but his track record in the major leagues is poor. And he has had a fair number of shots. Also, it’s odd this apparently came down to between Durbin and Miller. Huh? What about Wilfredo Ledezma? Isn’t he easily the sixth-best starter on the Tigers staff? Didn’t he do well last season when spotted into the rotation? I know Durbin has been starting and Ledezma has been relieving this spring, but there is plenty of time to prepare a starter before a fifth one is needed. Ledezma was every bit as good as Durbin at Toledo last year, contributed significantly to the Tigers at the major league level on a pennant winner, has a much better track record in both the major leagues and minor leagues than Durbin, is considerably younger and just, frankly, has a much better arm.
What is Ledezma, a situational left-hander? If that’s the case, it’s a waste. Usually this Tigers regime thinks things through better than this. It reminds me a lot of last season when Jim Leyland insisted on playing Neifi Perez and Ramon Santiago ahead of Omar Infante when Infante was clearly the best of three options. What about Zach Miner. Did the way he came through for the Tigers last season not mean anything? I have never been big on 4-A players being used as stop gap measures in these situations unless it is as a last resort. To me - and if he proves me wrong I'll be the first to give him credit for it - Durbin is a 4 A player. I just hope it's not somebody in the organization overvaluing somebody they signed.