Blog Entry

Tigers may play C Avila at third in NL parks

Posted on: June 15, 2011 11:22 am
By Evan Brunell

AvilaManager Jim Leyland isn't pleased about the fact he will have to remove one of his best hitters from the lineup when interleague play begins. Miguel Cabrera is entrenched at first base, and Alex Avila has been the primary catcher behind the dish -- but Detroit can't remove Victor Martinez from the lineup. That's caused Leyland to get a little creative in his thinking.

“I’m contemplating playing Alex a game at third," Leyland told the Detroit Free Press. "I had him quietly take some grounders [at third] yesterday. It’s just a thought I’m having to get his and Victor’s bat in there. I’m trying to be a little creative. It’s not a major story.

“I’m trying to be creative because it’s six in a row. I hate to lose those bats. I’m not saying I’m even going to do it. I’m just thinking. I’m wracking my brain so I can have those bats in there."

Even the Tigers were taken aback at Avila's progression, as he is currently hitting .296/.355/.545 with nine home runs and 12 doubles in 216 plate appearances. That's two more homers and doubles than he had last season in 333 PA. With Avila such an important part of the offense and what looks to be a fight for the division all year, it's understandable why Leyland is trying to find ways to put Avila in the lineup.

“There are a lot of catches to it," Leyland noted. "If you play Alex at third and then you want to take him out for defense in the seventh inning, then you’re naked at catcher.

“There are a whole lot of things that go on. You’ve got to say, ‘I’m willing to live with the consequences,’ and you’ve got enough guts to do it, or you don’t. I’m not sure.”

The Tigers head out to Colorado for a weekend series before heading to Dodger Stadium. After an off-day, they will return home next Friday to host the Diamondbacks.

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 22, 2011 11:05 am
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 6:49 pm

Tigers may play C Avila at third in NL parks

Merely enrolled in a RSS feed, doubtful n' t simply did it truly in fact? Leading-edge site of this road.

Since: Dec 13, 2007
Posted on: June 15, 2011 7:11 pm

Tigers may play C Avila at third in NL parks

This, and many others I'm reading about, is exactly the reason why MLB NEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEDS to realign itself and decide once and for all whether to adopt or abolish the DH!!! One way or the other, make a decision! As a manager, of a lesser team (retail store), I'd hate to have to worry about who I was going to have work for me like this.

Since: May 7, 2011
Posted on: June 15, 2011 5:17 pm

Tigers may play C Avila at third in NL parks

"Coach" has gotta do whatever it takes to keep a hot bat in the lineup. If that means that Avila has to play at 3rd base in order to stay in the lineup,then so be it. Come to think of it,didn't miguel play at third when he when he was with the Marlins? Now I could be wrong but I think that he played at third because I think that Derrek Lee was on the Marlins the same time Miguel was. 

Since: Nov 28, 2007
Posted on: June 15, 2011 3:06 pm

Tigers may play C Avila at third in NL parks

I certainly would like to see this happen. Martinez, Cabrera, and Avila in Colorado, Oh my!

Since: Jan 4, 2009
Posted on: June 15, 2011 2:08 pm

Tigers may play C Avila at third in NL parks

Tiger fans should be worried for a few games. Leyland was the worst manager in Rockies history, and a few games at Coors could ruin his mental state for a couple months.

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