Tag Archive: Jhonny Peralta


ALL THE RIGHT MOVES

The signing of Victor Martinez in the offseason has proven to be a key reason behind the Tigers winning the AL Central this season. (B. Calloway photo)

Dave Dombrowski entered the season with his job on the line.

The  Detroit Tigers general manager was on the final year of his contract and needed to help the team get back to the postseason.

He made several key decisions that helped the Tigers win the AL Central division title – their first division crown since 1987 and first playoff berth since reaching the World Series in 2006. Here is a look at some of the decisions he made that helped get the Tigers back into the postseason.

Signing Victor Martinez in the offseason

This might be one of the single most important decisions Dombrowski made.  The Tigers had several players they could pursue to bolster their lineup with Jayson Werth, Adam Dunn and Carl Crawford also being available. The decision to bring Martinez aboard for four years looks to be the be the best move of the bunch. Dunn, who is in his 1st season in the AL, is hitting .160 with 11 home runs and 42 RBIs for the White Sox. Crawford (.254, 11 HR, 18 SBs) is having a down year with the Red Sox and the same has been the case for Werth  (.232, 20 HR, 58 RBIS) with the Nationals.  Meanwhile Martinez has been a leader on and off the field for the Tigers

The switch-hitting Martinez is batting .324 with 12 home runs and 102 RBIs. He has come up with a number of big hits for the Tigers and made teams pay when they pitched around Miguel Cabrera. With runners on base he is hitting .399 and .390 when they are in scoring position.

Trading for Doug Fister at the trade deadline

Since being acquired from the Mariners in July, Doug Fister is 8-1 in 10 starts for the Tigers. (AP)

The Tigers needed pitching at the deadline to bolster their chances at winning the division. Fister has been the answer. Ubaldo Jimenez was considered to be one of the highly coveted players on the market but the Tiger and Dombrowski were smart to work out a trade with Seattle for Fister instead. Jimenez has struggled with the rival Indians, while Fister has become a top of the line starter for Detroit. In 10 starts since being acquired by the Tigers on July 30, Fister is 8-1 with a 1.79 ERA. He has struck out 54 and walked five over 70 1/3 innings. He and likely AL Cy Young winner Justin Verlander have formed a formidable 1-2 combination with a combined 14-0 record and 1.61 ERA since Aug. 16. Fister ranks fourth in the AL with a 2.83 ERA. Jimenez is 4-4 with a 5.10 ERA in 11 starts since the Indians acquired him from the Rockies.

Landing Wilson Betemit, Delmon Young from division rivals

Dombrowski made trades with division rivals during the season to land players that have been important pieces for the Tigers. In July, he acquired Betemit from the Royals. Betemit stepped in for the struggling Brandon Inge at third base. Betemit has hit .281 with four homers and 18 RBIs since joining the Tigers. Young was acquired in August from the Twins and has anchored left field and the No. 3 spot in the Detroit lineup. He has hit .264 with seven homers with 29 RBIs and four doubles in 38 games with the Tigers. Acquiring Young has proved as extra important with the Tigers having lost Brennan Boesch for the season with a thumb injury in August.

Acquiring Jhonny Peralta from Cleveland and re-signing him

Dombrowski acquired Peralta before the trade deadline in 2010, but the decision has made a big impact on this year’s team. Signed to a two-year contract in the offseason to play shortstop, Peralta has been a valuable contributor to the Tigers offense and has played steady defense. Peralta, who has mostly hit in the No. 6 or 7 spots in the lineup, entered Tuesday’s game hitting a career-best .301 with 20 home runs and 84 RBIs. He also has 25 doubles.

Great birthday: Miguel Cabrera played a key role in Detroit's 8-3 win over the Mariners on Monday at Safeco Field.


The Tigers used another big inning, which was aided by Seattle fielding errors, to open their three-game set with the Mariners with a win. Max Scherzer turned in another quality start for the Tigers and upped his pitching record to 3-0.

Hero: Miguel Cabrera / Brennan Boesch

Cabrera, who was celebrating his 28th birthday, had a key RBI hit on a 3-0 pitch that helped key Detroit’s big inning.

Boesch was also a key component for the Tigers

Key sequence: With the bases loaded, Jhonny Peralta broke the game open with his bases clearing triple

Up next: At Seattle, 10 p.m. Tuesday

Thoughts on Game 9 of 162

Brandon Inge looks down after his throwing error on Sunday. Inge's error is one of four the Tigers had in Sunday's 9-5 loss to the Royals at Comerica Park. (AP)

The Tigers dropped their third straight series as they dropped the rubber match of a three-game set with the Royals to fall to 3-6. The road doesn’t get any easier either as they welcome in the defending AL champion Texas Rangers for a three-game series. The Rangers are off to 8-1 start this season.

Hero: The Kansas City offense

Every Royal had a hit and seven different players drove in runs to lead the balanced Kansas City attack. The Royals scored run in six of the nine innings and never trailed in the contest. Wilson Betemit led the 15-hit attack by going 4 f0r 4 with two runs scored and an RBI. Michigan native Chris Getz had two RBIs for the Royals.

Not defensive minded: For a good portion of the game, the Tigers had more errors then hits. Their sloppy play in the field provided the Royal offense with a boost that they didn’t need with as many hits as they got off of Detroit pitching. Ryan Raburn had a throwing error in the third inning that allowed Melky Cabrera to move from second to third. He then scored on a groundout. With one out and runners on the corners in the fifth, Brandon Inge had a throwing error to second base on what could’ve been an inning-ending double play ball. That error allow K.C. to push its lead to 5-1. Daniel Schlereth and Rick Porcello also had throwing errors while trying to pick runners off at first.

Key to success?: Many pundits believe that Rick Porcello would be the key to the Tigers fortunes. As a No. 3 starter behind Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer, his success would likely determine how well the Tigers do. So far, not so good on that front. While his defense didn’t do him any justice on Sunday, Porcello allowed nine hits, five earned runs and walked three in five innings.

Jhonny on the spot: While Miguel Cabrera has been a big component in the Tigers offense, Jhonny Peralta has quietly gotten off to a great start for the Tigers. His struggles in spring training have been documented. Since the team has traveled north and the games have counted, Peralta has done nothing but hit. He went 3 for 4 on Sunday with a home run and double. He is batting .379 with three doubles and four RBIs out of the seven spot in the lineup.

Up next: Texas, 1 p.m. Monday

Thoughts on game 7 of 162

Welcome sight: Newcomer Victor Martinez had a key three-RBI double in the opening inning of Detroit's 5-2 win over Kansas City in Friday's home opener at Comerica Park (AP)

Victor Martinez and Max Scherzer proved to be a winning combination for the Tigers in their home opening victory over the Royals on Friday. Scherzer provided the team with a quality start and Martinez provided early offense that made the difference in the 5-2 victory for Detroit in its first game of the season against an AL Central team.

Hero / key sequence: Victor Martinez endeared himself to the Detroit fans by changing the game in his first home at-bat at Comerica Park. Martinez stepped to the plate with the bases loaded in the first inning and drilled a three-RBI triple to the right center field gap. That hit sparked the four-run first inning and provided all the offense the Tigers needed.

Unsung hero: Jhonny Peralta.

Peralta has quietly gotten off to a decent start offensively and added to it by driving in Detroit’s other two runs in Friday’s win. Peralta had a two-out double that plated Martinez in the opening inning and added a sacrifice fly that gave the Tigers their fifth and final run. Peralta finished 2 for 3 and is batting .333 so far this season.

Max power: Scherzer went six strong innings, giving up just one run and striking out three to improve to 2-0 on the mound this season. He only had a little trouble in the third and fourth innings. He allowed the lone run in the third on a two-out triple by Melky Cabrera. In the fourth he worked out of a bases loaded jam by getting an infield ground out to end the inning.

Today: Vs. Kansas City, 4 p.m. Reliever turned starter Phil Coke will be making his first start of 2011.

Wilkin Ramirez looks up after being caught stealing during a recent game against Buffalo. Ramirez's contract was designated for assignment by the Tigers on Wednesday (Brian Calloway photo)

He had all the tools and was highly regarded by many in the Tigers organization.

Wilkin Ramirez was one of those five-tool prospects who could do it all. He could hit for power, he had the speed. The tremendous amount of talent the 24-year old outfielder had resulted in two appearances in the Futures game – signifying that Ramirez is a star in the making.

Yet somehow, Ramirez still hasn’t been able to put up the numbers to match his raw potential.

This seemed to  be a make-or-break season for Ramirez, who spent some time in the bigs last season and made some positive things happen.

With Ramirez not producing numbers the Tigers would have liked, he was designated for assignment on Wednesday to make room for Jhonny Peralta, who was acquired in a trade with the Cleveland Indians.

With that, the Tigers have 10 days to decide what to do with Ramirez. He could get traded, released or placed on waivers. He likely will become one of the first players ever to play in a Futures game and then get designated for assignment that same month.

The appearance in the Futures Game likely has been the high in what has been a disappointing season for Ramirez. The season started with him getting demoted in a sense to Double-A Erie. Ramirez spent the 2009 season in Triple-A Toledo only to take a step backwards. The Tigers organization likely did that so Ramirez would get daily playing time and not have to rotate in a crowded Toledo outfield that featured Clete Thomas, Ryan Strieby, Jeff Frazier and Casper Wells.

Between stops at Erie and Toledo this season, Wilkin Ramirez was hitting .230 with 19 HRs, 56 RBIs and 144 strikeouts in 97 games. (B. Calloway photo)

Ramirez was hitting .241 with 15 homers and 42 RBIs when he was promoted back to Triple-A Toledo in June. Prior to getting DFA’d on Wednesday, Ramirez was batting .216 with four homers and 14 RBIs in 41 games with the Mud Hens. Not numbers you would expect from one of your elite prospects.

Between Erie and Toledo, Ramirez was hitting a combined .230 with 19 homers and 56 RBIs this season. Some alarming numbers include 144 strikeouts in 97 games and 12 stolen bases in 20 attempts (At Erie he stole five bases and was caught six times).

Cutting down on Ks was something Ramirez needed to do. With the down numbers across the board this season (Ramirez hit .258 with 17 HRs 51 RBIs and 33 steals while striking out 143 times in113 games last year at Toledo), it appears Ramirez has fallen out of favor with the Tigers. It’s unfortunate because Ramirez is still young. He could get it together in another couple of years and be the player the Tigers thought he was at one point of time. It appears he has run out of time with the organization.

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Looking at the 40-man roster, the Tigers other options of players to DFA were the following:

Casper Wells – OF (Batting .207 with 15 HRs and 33 RBIs in 82 games; also has 86 strikeouts at Toledo)

Clete Thomas – OF (Hit .183 in 21 games with Toledo, out for the year with injury)

Ryan Strieby – OF (Hitting .243 with 15 doubles and 10 HRs and 48 RBIs in 73 games at Toledo)

Audy Ciriaco – SS/3B (hitting .241 with 9 HRs in 61 games at Double-A before promotion to Toledo)

Brent Dlugach -SS (hitting .267 with 38 RBIs and 20 doubles; has 21 errors)

Alfredo Figaro – P (9-6 with 3.91 ERA at Toledo, just named IL Pitcher of the Week)

Fu-Te Ni – P (lefty reliever has 9.72 ERA in nine games since being sent down to Toledo)

Daniel Schlerth – P  (Lefty was acquired in offseason trade from D’Backs; has 47 Ks in 40 innings and a 2.38 ERA out of the bullpen)

Bobby Seay / Zach Miner – P (Injured relief pitchers)

Jacob Turner / Andrew Oliver – P (Prized pitching prospects. Not a chance they would have been DFA’d)

Note that this was probably made more difficult because of the injuries to Magglio Ordonez and Carlos Guillen. That forced the Tigers to put Will Rhymes and Jeff Larish on the 40-man roster and eliminate Casey Fien and Billy Buckner.

I think Ni and Thomas also could have been a viable options to DFA.