photo by Emily Smith
Things are afoot!
Cameron Maybin has been called up, which will give us all our very first look at the much-ballyhooed tiger cub here at the big league level. He had just been bumped up to Erie last week, so talk about whiplash: the kid barely had a chance to get all excited about being promoted to AA ball, and now he’s going to be in a Tigers uniform in Yankee Stadium.
In order to make room for him, Craig Monroe has been designated for assignment. This makes sense. It had seemed more and more obvious, as the weeks wore on, that the Craig Monroe era was drawing to a close. There’s only so long that the Tigers could stick with his .637 OPS… for comparison, Maggs has a 1.025 OPS. Pudge has a .724 OPS, despite the fact that he walks basically NEVER, and even Brandon Inge has a .708 OPS. Mike Rabelo, the EMERGENCY BACKUP CATCHER, pressed into action only because the regular backup catcher is dead, has a .677 OPS. A .637 OPS is essentially unacceptable for a starting Tiger.
It was especially unacceptable because Cameron Maybin existed. Maybe, maaaaaaybe if the Tigers had had nothing of note in the minors, Monroe would’ve stuck around. But it made no sense to keep him with something a lot better in the wings. I mean, if nothing else, just think about how fast our outfield looks right now. Hot stuff.
It’s a LITTLE weird that this happens now. Why not wait ’til September?
Scary side-thought: Monroe will probably clear waivers. Jack Wilson, I think, just cleared waivers. I thought those trade talks had finally died, but if they haven’t… urgh. DO NOT WANT. Especially not since Wilson was only yesterday wheezing on the field.
The other move made was a call-up of Ramon Santiago and a corresponding demotion of Omar Infante to AAA. This makes less sense to me. Yeah, Omar’s not exactly tearing up the world with fire and vigor right now, but he’s not doing terribly for a bench guy, and I can’t see that Santiago is going to make much more of an impact. I would hope that the Tigers aren’t making moves just for the sake of making moves, and I doubt that they are, but the reasoning behind this one is not immediately clear to me.
edit: If you put some stock in the Monroe/Wilson rumor, I guess you have to consider the chance that Omar’s demotion was part of some machinations to send him to the Pirates along with Craig. If that is in fact the case, I hate it. Monroe for Wilson isn’t SO bad… I still don’t like Wilson for the money, but at least we wanted to get rid of Craig anyhow. But I do NOT like the idea of giving the Pirates anything useful for a player that we should not at all be trying hard to get. And I consider Omar to be quite useful. Also: young. So if THAT is what the plan is, yeah, I’m going to be fairly unhappy about it.