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Who’s gonna DH in Detroit?

Mar 2, 2012, 10:30 AM EDT

Delmon Young AP

Lynn Henning has a story up today about how hard it’s going to be for Jim Leyland to find someone to pencil into the DH slot every day this year without ruffling feathers.

One of the options that seems to not be on the table at the moment is just making Delmon Young the DH:

Young appeared to confirm as much Thursday. As he exited the clubhouse door, he was askef full-time DH work could be agreeable. He looked as if he had just been called by a telemarketer.

“I’ve never done it before,” he said. “I’ve heard it’s difficult. I’d prefer to play my position. I don’t know. We haven’t even played one game yet.”

Obviously it’s Leyland’s choice, not Young’s. And there’s some suggestion that there will be a bit of a rotation there, with Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and Young, among others, all taking turns as the DH.

But man: it sometimes sounds like that ridiculous scenario Aaron articulated in January — a team with Fielder, Cabrera and Young on the roster and none of them DHing — is a possibility.

  1. Baseball Beer Burritos In That Order - Mar 2, 2012 at 10:34 AM

    In a perfect world, no one would DH for the Tigers, because the DH wouldn’t exist.

    Pitchers were meant to hit.

    • istillbelieveinblue - Mar 2, 2012 at 10:45 AM

      I really enjoy watching the cat-and-mouse games played by National League Managers late in games. Sure, some of that exists in the American League, but not nearly as much.

      • JBerardi - Mar 2, 2012 at 10:53 AM

        “Sure, some of that exists in the American League, but not nearly as much.”

        That’s got less to do with the existence of the DH and more to do with the expansion of bullpens and the decline of managers who know or care about proper baseball tactics. Put it another way: who would you rather watch manage a team, Earl Weaver in a DH league, or Ron Washington in a non-DH league?

      • Ari Collins - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:58 AM

        Yes. It’s very exciting to watch them make the exact same strategic decisions that managers have been doing by the book for a century. And pitchers hitting? So fun to watch atheletes who have perfected their craft so.

      • firstandonlywarning - Mar 2, 2012 at 3:07 PM

        LOl @ Cat and Mouse

        Don’t give the obvious you seen coming 20 min earlier so much credit.

        Pitcher pitching well removed earlier – Great
        Pitches who can’t hit (99%) hitting – Great

        The idea that there is so much strategy involved that it makes up for me having to watch pitchers swing a bat is foolish and caught up in nostalgia.

    • JBerardi - Mar 2, 2012 at 10:47 AM

      And yet, hitters weren’t made to pitch. Why don’t we stick Prince Fielder on the mound? Wouldn’t be exciting to see him “contribute on both sides of the ball”?

      Well, no, it wouldn’t. It would be an utter embarrassment to the sport of baseball– and guess what? For 95% of pitchers, it’s the same exact thing when they try to hit. They’re overmatched to a degree that’s truly absurd. And it’s not how the game is “supposed to be played”, it’s how you’re used to it being played. But if you really examine it, it’s a relic from an earlier era that makes no sense in today’s game.

      • cur68 - Mar 2, 2012 at 10:57 AM

        Pretty much this, excepting that I like watching a jock come over all awkward. Its a bit of comic relief. Also, I can go get beer, see if there’s any more chips, see a man about a horse, maybe even canoodle if I can locate my female company du jour (usually this just means patting my doggie on the head and giving her a cookie, but every once in a while there’s actual human female company involved). Point is, the quaint ole NL rules inject a bit of a change and variety into the game, so I’m for pitchers batting…except when they foul one off the kisser. That aint cool.

    • missthemexpos - Mar 2, 2012 at 10:49 AM

      Try telling that to A. J. Burnett

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:07 AM

        and Chien-ming Wang

    • JBerardi - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:04 AM

      Oh yeah, one more thing I want to point out,

      “Pitchers were meant to hit.

      Oh, really? 141/.175/.183. That’s the combined line of all pitchers last year. Saying that pitchers are “meant” to hit is like saying that the Sahara is meant to be wet.

      • Baseball Beer Burritos In That Order - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:21 AM

        Dude, don’t you think I know that most big league pitchers can’t hit big league pitching? I’ve watched baseball all my life.

        The entire point is that putting a wimpy pitcher in the lineup guarantees a few at-bats from someone you can’t statistically rely on to get a hit. Which causes the manager in certain situations to have to make actual baseball decisions instead of penciling in a lineup and successively pulling/replacing pitchers.

        I love baseball, all of it, so I’m not trying to be a snobby jerk and say I won’t watch the AL. I’m just saying that I think the NL’s way of playing the game has an equalizer between the every-day players and the specialist, but in the AL you essentially have two specialists in every game. Being a fan of not just the game but the theory behind it (and really, being a nerd for all strategy, be it pinch hitting or chess or being efficient on a long road trip) I prefer the NL’s way of doing things. I guess we’ll agree to disagree?

      • Baseball Beer Burritos In That Order - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:25 AM

        Also, for the record, if I can get Earl Weaver or Ron Washington in either league, I’ll take them, two of my all-time favorite baseball people.

      • nategearhart - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:43 AM

        Burritos, I think it’s the opposite. If the NL manager is forced to pull the pitcher, he’s not making a decision at all. The decision is made for him by circumstance.
        The DH means the AL manager has to actually monitor his pitchers, know how they are doing and decide without having his hand held when/if his pitcher should come out.

      • spindervish - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:44 AM

        Uh huh. And how about the Prince-as-pitcher suggestion?

        It’s definitely a little annoying to hear the same “complete player” argument over and over about this when those making that argument never bother to address the fact that no one besides the pitcher is expected to pitch.

        Specialization, man. It’s generally a good thing.

      • canucklehead21 - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:47 AM


        I thought that was Adam Dunn’s 2011 line?

      • Ari Collins - Mar 2, 2012 at 12:02 PM

        I might agree with you, Burritos, if there were any actual strategy involved. Hitting for pitchers and double switches ain’t exactly rocket science, here. Honestly, do people talk about specific managers who are great at the double switch? Or who hit for pitchers at times no one else would?

      • firstandonlywarning - Mar 2, 2012 at 3:15 PM

        LMAO JB

    • bjbroderick - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:33 AM

      A.J. Burnett would like to disagree with you. Wink Wink.

  2. gendisarray - Mar 2, 2012 at 10:36 AM

    These guys are like baseball’s version of the Phoenix Suns during the Mike D’Antoni era. It’s going to be funny to watch… right up until they beat my team 10-9 every game.

  3. jimbo1949 - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:00 AM

    Craig, I’m getting aggravated with the HBT website. On Firefox, every time I comment or refresh, a dialog box pops up regarding scripts running on the page: stop or continue. Click continue and it hangs, click stop and it works.
    In IE no dialog box but anywhere I click I get a popup ad. This is BULLSHIT. I T had better clean up their act. I know I’m not the first to complain but this is how criminal and ID theft sites operate. Running hidden scripts on your website is an intolerable practice.

    • JBerardi - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:15 AM

      I basically only run Safari on my Mac to look at HBT. Chrome is my workhorse browser but it always chokes on some sort of scrip at HBT. AND I’m running AdBlock and Click to Flash and all that crap; IE I’m looking at the GOOD version of the internet that only geeks have access to, and the site STILL sucks.

      Honestly, I keep hoping that my favorite HBT writers get picked up by publications who’s web presence isn’t quite so embarrassing.

      • kopy - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:59 AM

        I use Chrome on a PC without AdBlock at work, and on a PC with AdBlock at home, and I’ve never had problems with HBT, FWIW.

      • kopy - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:59 AM

        Sorry, meant to say Mac at home.

    • cur68 - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:28 AM

      Jimbo: I had the same trouble with Safari. Fixed it by following the instructions on this website:

      You can also upgrade Safari to a better version if you’re running an older version. Turn your pop-up blocker on, too. Sounds like its not enabled.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:36 AM

      Not having these issues on my PCs at home and work running windows with Firefox. I think these are local issues. Upgrade firefox?

    • jimbo1949 - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:50 AM

      Cur, I don’t run Safari. I use Firefox mostly, IE as necessary for certain websites. I’m not going to accommodate HBT, it should be the other way around.

      CC, I’m running Firefox, FF sez it’s the latest and I’m on auto update for both FF and IE.

      • Graves - Mar 2, 2012 at 12:33 PM

        Hey Jimbo, I’ve got the same problem on FireFox.

        I downloaded an Add-On called “YesScript” and added HBT to the list of blocked sites. It helps, but it also sorta bugs things up so that you can’t comment, using the thumbs up/down, and it pretty much keeps you from using the scrolling story thingity-thing at the top.

        Not ideal in the slightest. I’ve turned it off and put up with the pain in the ass Script prompt instead just so I can still comment.

        The upside of using “YesScript” is that it loads quickly and everything, so I’ll toggle it off and on from time-to-time if I’m just plowing through stories to catch up after a meeting or something sucks up my afternoon.

      • cur68 - Mar 2, 2012 at 1:00 PM

        Reading fail on part Jimbo. Irony time: I use firefox too, but have Safari as well. I prefer Firefox because it hasn’t the same problems as I’ve had with Safari (same issue with the script). I recently fixed Safari using the advice on that website. As to FF, I use version 10.0.2 with automatic update and popup blocking turned on and Java Script enabled. It has no problems whatsoever. If you have a mac try “fixing your permissions” using disk utility first, updating FF and checking the Java Script & popup settings in preferences. Might help. Good luck.

    • firstandonlywarning - Mar 2, 2012 at 3:17 PM

      Wouldnt this be a Worldpress issue rather than HBT?

  4. spindervish - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:01 AM

    So why does everyone think Leyland is such a great manager? Because he’s old and crusty and ornery and looks cool with a cigarette in his mouth? This is a serious question…at least half-serious.

    I just do not understand how this guy has two DHs on his squad, wants to play them at 1st and 3rd, and everyone whose opinion matters seems to be cool with this. Oh, and Inge at 2nd. I mean seriously…

  5. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:09 AM

    They could use someone like Derek Lee to throw into the DH rotation. At least they could then have a serious A offense to roll out, with Fielder, Cabrera and Young in the field, and a legit hitter at DH. If they play Cabrera at 3B and have Inge as the DH they have only gotten worse.

  6. nategearhart - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:49 AM

    The Tigers should field an entire offense of DHs…sign Vlad! Carlos Pena! Damon! Un-retire Garrett Anderson! The games would be high scoring (when Verlander isn’t pitching), and the Tigers on defense would be sweet, sweet comedy.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 2, 2012 at 1:52 PM

      Ron Gardenhire? Is that you?

      • wlschneider09 - Mar 2, 2012 at 2:02 PM

        Since when? Gardy prefers the scrappy guys who can play everywhere but can’t hit.

      • jimmylegz - Mar 2, 2012 at 11:54 PM

        … and he seems to enjoy playing teams with the opposite approach. Get it?

    • Alex K - Mar 2, 2012 at 2:35 PM

      Carlos Pena isn’t a bad defender, from what I understand. I don’t know if he fits with the rest of those guys.

      • nategearhart - Mar 2, 2012 at 3:48 PM

        Then stick him in CF 😛

      • Alex K - Mar 2, 2012 at 4:37 PM

        Best. Idea. Ever.

  7. Graves - Mar 2, 2012 at 12:29 PM

    They’re totally going to use Brandon Inge as the DH aren’t they?!

    They’ll take one of their best gloves and worst bats and put him in the DH slot. I can see it now.

  8. papacrick - Mar 2, 2012 at 2:28 PM

    Ryan Raburn is going to make the most starts at DH this year when it’s all said and done. You heard it here first.

  9. weaselpuppy - Mar 3, 2012 at 4:36 PM

    Raburn is painful at 2b..iron glove…but he has a good arm and range for LF. He gets bad jumps and freezes on balls hit at him…and turns the wrong way a lot…

    and that is still WAYYYY better than Delmon Young’s “play” in LF. He runs like a Japanese geisha with bound feet…except he’s 6’1 with a belly…it’s painful to watch. His arm stinks…he’s the worst fielding LF in baseball…

    I would expect to see the DH breakdown like this:

    DY2 90 games if traded by deadline or 110 if not
    Cabby-30 games (20 if DY2 stays)
    Prince- 10 games (none if DY2 stays)
    Avila- 32 games

    Also, Inge starts the 20-30 at 3b Cabby misses, and another 60 at 2b, with Raburn getting 120 starts across 2b and LF.

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