Tigers expected to swap reliever for bench bat soon
DETROIT -- While the Tigers shuffled their shortstops, that was the only move they made Sunday. Their expected move to bring back a fourth bench player and pare back their bullpen to seven relievers didn't happen Sunday.
That said, it shouldn't be long. While Ausmus indicated a move could be near, he said Sunday morning that they wanted to see how Sunday's game played out before doing anything. Rick Porcello's seven quality innings Sunday likely alleviated any hesitation.
By rule, the Tigers can't recall outfielder Tyler Collins -- the man optioned to Triple-A Toledo to make room for an extra reliever -- for another week. He must stay in the Minors for at least 10 days unless the Tigers have to place someone on the disabled list. Given Collins' limited playing time in Detroit, though, another bench guy might have been likely anyway.
Two veteran candidates at Triple-A Toledo made their case Saturday. Speedy outfielder Ezequiel Carrera, who made an impression on the Tigers in Spring Training, went 5-for-8 with a home run in a Mud Hens' doubleheader at Columbus. J.D. Martinez, meanwhile, homered four times in the twin bill, three times in the opener, to raise his total to 10 home runs in 17 games this year. He's 20-for-71 (.282), with half of his hits leaving the yard.