• The Tigers cut their number of unsigned players on their 40-man rosters in half on Friday, announcing one-year agreements with seven players.
The list includes relievers Al Alburquerque, Melvin Mercedes, Jose Ortega and Brayan Villarreal, along with lefty Drew Smyly, catcher Bryan Holaday and outfielder Andy Dirks.
All the players who signed, and all seven left to sign, have too little service time to qualify for arbitration. The Tigers can continue to negotiate with unsigned players for at least the next week. Detroit can unilaterally renew contracts for its unsigned players as early as March 2.
• Fans will also get a glimpse of closing candidate Bruce Rondon on Saturday. He won't finish the game, Leyland cautioned, but he's scheduled to pitch sometime after the third inning so that Leyland can get a look at him against members of the Jays' starting lineup.