With velo back, K-Rod searching for command

Closer blows second save of season as Tigers' bullpen struggles continue

With velo back, K-Rod searching for command

DETROIT -- The story of the Tigers' 2-1 loss to the Mariners on Thursday shouldn't be the bullpen, manager Brad Ausmus argued.

"People want to focus on the bullpen. We scored one run," Ausmus said. "You're not going to win many games when you score one run."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers' 'pen falters after Verlander's 7 strong

Tigers' 'pen falters after Verlander's 7 strong

DETROIT -- A Tigers-Mariners series that began with two one-sided affairs ended with Detroit and Seattle putting on a pitching duel. Ben Gamel's ninth-inning RBI single off Francisco Rodriguez scored Kyle Seager to put the Mariners on top for a 2-1 win, taking a series that began with Seattle giving up 19 runs in the opener.

"We got outscored, but we ended up winning the series," said Mariners manager Scott Servais, whose team is now 4-10 on the road after winning the last two. "We'll take it. That's getting back to playing our style of ball. We had a rough night that first night in. They scored some runs, we didn't pitch very well, but our guys washed it off and got back after it. We won the series, and we've got to continue to build some momentum here on the road."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Iglesias activated from concussion DL

Shortstop returns 1 week after collision at 2B; lefty reliever Ryan optioned

Iglesias activated from concussion DL

DETROIT -- The injury-riddled Tigers gained a valuable player back from the disabled list on Thursday. Shortstop Jose Iglesias passed Major League Baseball's concussion protocol and was activated from the seven-day concussion DL.

Lefty reliever Kyle Ryan was optioned to Triple-A Toledo to make room.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Former Tigers pick Mahomes talk of NFL Draft

Texas Tech QB impressed Detroit scout with demeanor, strong arm

Former Tigers pick Mahomes talk of NFL Draft

DETROIT -- Long before Patrick Mahomes became the talk of the NFL Draft as a high-ceiling quarterback, the Tigers had already taken a chance on him. He was already a long shot to play baseball back then, but his strong arm and baseball roots were worth the risk.

As Mahomes awaits a potential first-round selection in Thursday night's NFL Draft, the former Tigers 37th-round pick has clearly improved his stock. But considering the low-risk selection, the Tigers have no regrets.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Boyd eyes rebound against White Sox

Boyd eyes rebound against White Sox

Mike Pelfrey spent one season of his 12-year career in Detroit. So getting a chance to pitch for the White Sox against the Tigers on Friday night at Comerica Park doesn't exactly represent a shot at retribution for the right-hander.

"I'm not trying to make too big of a deal about it," Pelfrey said. "Obviously it's another game. I'm going out there to win the game and pitch.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Shepherd stays hot with two more homers

Shepherd stays hot with two more homers

Tyler Mahle's chances of throwing his second straight perfect game came undone just two batters into his start on Thursday. The Reds' No. 10 prospect still was plenty good, tossing six dominant frames to extend his scoreless innings streak to 19 2/3 for Double-A Pensacola.

Mahle needed just 88 pitches in his previous start to record the first nine-inning perfect game in the Southern League since 1970. He threw 94 (64 strikes) on Thursday, allowing four hits and one walk with seven strikeouts before departing with a 3-0 lead. The Blue Wahoos' bullpen would give back those runs in the subsequent frames, however, ultimately falling to Biloxi, 4-3, and costing Mahle an opportunity at his fifth win in as many starts.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Norris off, bats shut down by Mariners

Norris off, bats shut down by Mariners

DETROIT -- James Paxton shut down a Tigers offense that put up 32 runs over its previous two games, allowing Guillermo Heredia's two-run homer in a three-run second inning to put Seattle in command for an 8-0 win on Wednesday at Comerica Park.

Paxton (3-0) won the battle of stingy lefties over Daniel Norris by punchouts, racking up called third strikes on three of Detroit's first five hitters before fanning four in a row in the fourth and fifth innings. His seven innings marked his fourth scoreless outing in five starts this season, and a rebound from the five runs he yielded to the A's in his last start.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inefficiency continues to plague Norris

Tigers lefty limits walks, but out in 5th after 104 pitches

Inefficiency continues to plague Norris

DETROIT -- Daniel Norris needed few words to express his frustration. He has been at this point enough times that he's running out of words to describe it.

"Clearly I have some work to do," Norris said.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Avila: Starting pitching, depth behind hot start

Tigers' Minor League free agents Adduci, Hicks paying dividends

Avila: Starting pitching, depth behind hot start

DETROIT -- As the Tigers sit on top of the American League Central with their fast start, general manager Al Avila said they've performed up to expectations so far, good and bad.

"I think our team so far has performed as expected," Avila told members of the Detroit Economic Club on Wednesday during the Tigers' annual luncheon with the club. "We knew we were going to have good starting pitching. We knew we were going to be good offensively. We knew we were going to struggle a little bit with the bullpen as we first started, and we're hoping to get it on track."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Roaring Tigers offense scores 19 to rout M's

Roaring Tigers offense scores 19 to rout M's

DETROIT -- The Tigers teed off for four home runs and 24 hits Tuesday in a 19-9 runaway over the Mariners, knocking Felix Hernandez out with a tight right shoulder after just two innings in the process as they rolled to their third consecutive win.

Ian Kinsler led the onslaught with four hits, four runs and two RBIs as the Tigers racked up season highs in hits and runs for the second consecutive game, having topped the Twins 13-4 with 13 hits on Sunday.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast.

Kyle Beery is a contributor to MLB.com based in Detroit.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers missing 4, but enjoying power surge

Tigers missing 4, but enjoying power surge

DETROIT -- During a time when four regular players are on the disabled list, the Tigers haven't shown many signs of worry from an offensive standpoint. After erupting for 19 runs and 24 hits in Tuesday's 19-9 win over the Mariners, Detroit has racked up 37 runs and 48 hits in the past three games.

Not only have mainstays like Ian Kinsler -- 4-for-5 with two RBIs on Tuesday -- and Victor Martinez -- who collected his first two extra-base hits of the season in the past two games -- started to heat up, the replacements from Triple-A Toledo have been on a roll.

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Kyle Beery is a contributor to MLB.com based in Detroit. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Injured Tigers quartet healing on schedule

Injured Tigers quartet healing on schedule

DETROIT -- The Tigers have been bitten by the injury bug early on this season, but manager Brad Ausmus said Tuesday that all four players nursing short-term injuries are on schedule to return soon.

Miguel Cabrera (right groin strain), J.D. Martinez (right foot sprain), Jose Iglesias (concussion) and JaCoby Jones (lip laceration) have made progress, and Ausmus said he doesn't expect any of them to be out longer than what their DL stints dictate.

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Kyle Beery is a contributor to MLB.com based in Detroit. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Funkhouser continues to rack up Ks

Funkhouser continues to rack up Ks

Class A Advanced Florida's offense was shut out on Sunday for the first time this season. That was anything but the case on Tuesday, however, as the Fire Frogs erupted for 10 runs in the first inning before defeating Palm Beach, 22-2. Florida pounded out 18 hits including four home runs in the victory, with each starter collecting at least one hit and scoring one run.

Braves No. 7 prospect Ronald Acuna (No. 96 overall) established season highs with three hits and five RBIs, three of which came on his three-run triple in the first inning. The 19-year-old center fielder later added his second home run of the season, a two-run shot to center field in the eighth inning, to finish 3-for-5 at the plate.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

V-Mart vital for Tigers' banged-up lineup

Martinez delivering with RISP, still missing extra-base pop

V-Mart vital for Tigers' banged-up lineup

MINNEAPOLIS -- The ball seared the gap in left-center at spacious Target Field, sending Eddie Rosario and Danny Santana chasing as Nicholas Castellanos came in. Statcast™ registered it at 102.9 mph off the bat. Victor Martinez rumbled into second base, his 38-year-old legs moving at their own velocity.

It sounds like an ordinary hit in Sunday's 13-4 Tigers victory. But it was Martinez's first extra-base hit of 2017, three weeks into the season.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Boyd receives fine for incident against Twins

Boyd receives fine for incident against Twins

DETROIT -- Tigers left-hander Matt Boyd received a fine on Monday from Major League Baseball as part of its discipline from Saturday's incident with Twins slugger Miguel Sano. However, Boyd avoided a suspension, which should be a relief to the Tigers as they deal with an injury-depleted roster this week.

Sano received a one-game suspension, which he is appealing.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jaye throws six scoreless for Erie

Jaye throws six scoreless for Erie

Posting zeroes has become the norm for Class A Kane County's Jon Duplantier in the first month of the Minor League season. On Monday, the D-backs' No. 8 prospect fired five dominant frames to extend his scoreless innings streak to 20 1/3 to begin the season.

Duplantier, 22, allowed three hits and struck out eight batters en route to his first professional win. He generated six ground-ball outs and did not record a flyout in the outing, throwing 45 of his 69 pitches for strikes in his third start (and fourth appearance) for the Cougars.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers' callups ring in arrival with 3-hit games

Injury replacements Hicks, Adduci help ease Detroit's tumultuous week

Tigers' callups ring in arrival with 3-hit games

MINNEAPOLIS -- Jim Adduci thought he was getting another reminder about a uniform violation when Triple-A Toledo manager Mike Rojas signaled to him while he was stepping into the batter's box for his third at-bat at Lehigh Valley on Saturday.

"The last couple series, for some reason, my pocket has been out," Adduci said. "So when they called time, I was [tucking in the pocket]. But then Rojas was waving me over. I didn't know what was going on."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jones feeling fortunate after getting hit in face

Jones feeling fortunate after getting hit in face

MINNEAPOLIS -- JaCoby Jones can distinctly recall what was going through his mind when he got up and started running toward the dugout after getting hit in the mouth by a Justin Haley pitch during the Tigers' 5-4 win over the Twins on Saturday.

"I was like, 'Get up. Just don't lay on the ground,'" Jones said on Sunday morning. "When I saw the blood, I knew it was bad. But I was like, 'Just run it off.' I don't know what I was thinking."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins can't tame Tigers, V-Mart in finale rout

Twins can't tame Tigers, V-Mart in finale rout

MINNEAPOLIS -- Alex Avila hit a two-run homer and three Tigers finished with three hits to back right-hander Michael Fulmer and lead Detroit to a 13-4 win over the Twins on Sunday at Target Field.

The Tigers beat up on right-hander Kyle Gibson, who allowed seven runs (six earned) on eight hits and two walks over 2 2/3 innings. He fell to 0-3 with a 9.00 ERA.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers place Miggy on DL with groin strain

Hicks called up from Triple-A; Ausmus hopeful slugger will be ready May 1

Tigers place Miggy on DL with groin strain

MINNEAPOLIS -- Before Saturday's 5-4 win over Minnesota, the Tigers placed Miguel Cabrera on the 10-day disabled list with a right groin strain suffered in Friday's loss to the Twins at Target Field. But manager Brad Ausmus said they're hopeful Cabrera will be ready to return when he's eligible to be activated on May 1.

"I don't know," Cabrera said. "We'll see how it feels, but I don't really know."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Play Ball brings fun, joy of game to Flint kids

MLB, Tigers and Jackson Park RBI Program partner for Michigan event

Play Ball brings fun, joy of game to Flint kids

FLINT, Mich. -- With as much as Flint, Mich., has gone through with its water crisis, hosting a Play Ball event at an inner-city park was a welcome positive change. On a sunny Saturday at Hardenbrook Park in Flint, the Tigers partnered with Major League Baseball to bring kids an afternoon of fun and an opportunity for a taste of the game -- for some, their first ever.

"It's great for [people outside of Flint] to see [events like this]," Flint mayor Karen Weaver said. "Because it's about more than fixing infrastructure. It's about bringing these other kinds of positives to the city of Flint. Because it lets people know that Flint is not forgotten, that we are coming back, and great things are happening here."

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Catherine Slonksnis is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Shepherd goes deep, plates 5 for Lakeland

Shepherd goes deep, plates 5 for Lakeland

Clint Frazier has had Yankees fans abuzz since New York traded for him last July, but he hadn't gotten off to the hottest start to the 2017 season at the plate. As of Saturday, that looks like it might be changing.

One of the team's two uber-prospects along with shortstop Gleyber Torres, Frazier went 2-for-3 with a solo home run for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, accounting for the only offense in the RailRiders' 1-0 win over the Indianapolis Indians.

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David Adler is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Castellanos, bullpen lead Tigers in tense win

Castellanos, bullpen lead Tigers in tense win

MINNEAPOLIS -- In a feisty game that saw the benches clear in the fifth inning after Tigers left-hander Matthew Boyd threw behind Miguel Sano, Nicholas Castellanos homered in the third and came through with a go-ahead RBI double in the sixth to lead the Tigers to a 5-4 win over the Twins on Saturday at Target Field.

"That's not how you draw it up, for sure," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "We needed a win and we got it."

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sano, Boyd ejected after bench-clearing fracas

Sano, Boyd ejected after bench-clearing fracas

MINNEAPOLIS -- The benches cleared for both the Twins and Tigers on Saturday after Detroit left-hander Matthew Boyd threw a 91-mph fastball behind Minnesota first baseman Miguel Sano in the fifth inning of the Tigers' eventual 5-4 win at Target Field. Sano objected and pointed his finger at Boyd, then he shoved catcher James McCann when McCann put his glove in Sano's face as he tried to get between Sano and Boyd.

Sano was immediately ejected after the hard shove of McCann, and both benches cleared, including relievers running in from the outfield bullpens. After a conference at the mound, Boyd was ejected for throwing behind Sano.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Jimenez surrenders 1st Major League homer

Jimenez surrenders 1st Major League homer

MINNEAPOLIS -- Francisco Rodriguez, Tigers closer of the present, took a few minutes after Friday's 6-3 loss to the Twins talking with Joe Jimenez, widely regarded as the Tigers' closer of the future. Justin Verlander planned to do the same at some point to make sure Jimenez's mind was in the right place after Eddie Rosario's three-run homer off him pulled Minnesota ahead.

For most relievers it would sound mundane. But for Jimenez it was just the fifth home run he has surrendered over 147 innings in his pro career after giving up only one over 53 1/3 innings between three levels last season. His first allowed in the Majors came on his fifth batter.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Burrows fans eight in seven scoreless

Burrows fans eight in seven scoreless

No pitcher has been more dominant than Class A Columbia's Merandy Gonzalez to begin the season. That trend continued on Friday night, as the Mets' No. 14 prospect extended his scoreless innings streak to 20 2/3 by tossing seven frames in a win against Lexington.

Gonzalez allowed just three singles and struck out a season-high seven batters en route to his third win in as many starts for the Fireflies. He retired nine consecutive batters at one point before setting down the final seven he faced to finish with 88 pitches (64 strikes).

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers pay for Verlander's uncommon wildness

Tigers pay for Verlander's uncommon wildness

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins used a patient approach against Justin Verlander, drawing six walks against the veteran ace, including three as part of a six-run sixth inning capped by a three-run homer from Eddie Rosario in a 6-3 win over the Tigers on Friday night at Target Field.

Verlander, coming off a start in which he gave up nine runs in four innings against the Indians, got through five scoreless frames before it unraveled in the sixth with three straight walks. The six walks he surrendered were the second most in his career, and the most since he walked seven as a rookie in 2006.

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Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and listen to his podcast.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gose pitches an inning in extended spring

Gose pitches an inning in extended spring

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Anthony Gose pitching experiment has progressed to game action. The center fielder-turned-lefty reliever pitched an inning in an extended spring training contest, according to Tigers manager Brad Ausmus.

"The first guy got a hit, and then he struck out the next three," Ausmus said on Friday afternoon.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.