Monthly Archives: March 2012

Brennan Boesch

Sweet Swingin’ Brennan Boesch Continues to Rake

Brennan Boesch continues his hot hitting this Spring by launching a three-run homer last night off Washington Nationals pitcher Mitch Atkins. The homer would go for nought as the Tigers lost 5-3 in the late innings.

With Boesch’s home run on Thursday night he has now homered in three of his last four games, with two homers coming off of lefties.

Brennan is a career .269 hitter and has been a shade better this Spring hitting at a .271 clip. In 59 Spring at bats, Brennan is hitting .263 against lefties and .275 against righties. Which, for a power hitter like him, that’s pretty even keel.

After getting off to a slow start this Spring, Boesch has really picked it up as of late. Hitting in five straight games collecting seven hits, three home runs and six RBIs.

“You build to a point in spring training where you feel like you have the swing where you want it to be,” Boesch said.

“From then on, the swing is no longer something you’re concerned about.”

“That’s when it starts to get fun, when you can trust your swing and start competing out there.”

Boesch was asked if he had reached that point:

“Yeah,” Boesch said. “I’ve been there for two weeks.”

I tabbed Boesch in a earlier post this season to hit .270 18HR 75RBI. It looks like he’s well on his way to match those numbers. I think that if Boesch continues his sweet swingin’ into the regular season, he’ll exceed the eighteen home run mark and maybe even reach twenty five. He still needs to improve his OBP percentage as a number two hitter, which won’t be easy hitting in front of Cabrera and Prince. Because, there isn’t no way a pitcher is going to walk him to get to the Big Fellas.

Brennan Boesch

Tigers’ Brennan Boesch Rises to the Lefty Challenge

Leyland impressed by rightfielder’s double in late at-bat

LAKELAND, Fla. — Tigers manager Jim Leyland gave rightfielder Brennan Boesch one challenge against a left-hander
Monday, then announced he’ll give him another Opening Day.

In Monday’s eighth inning, Leyland let Boesch – who’s played the whole game – face Miami’s Randy Choate, an 11 year
veteran who throws from a nasty sidearm angle.

Boesch took that big, beautiful left-handed swing of his and drilled Choate’s pitch over the centerfie1der’s head for a doubie.

I was really proud of him, because I was on him from the bench,”
Leyland said. “I could have run a right-hander up there. But he’s going to play. 1 threw him a iittle challenge: ‘Grind out this at-bat.You’ve got a left-hender throwing from where (Choate) does.‘

He really showed me something.”

Then Leyiand said “as it stands right now,” Boesch would start in the opener a week from Thursday against Boston’s Jon Lester,one of the league’s ace left-handers.

Boesch didn’t start when the Tigers opened the season last year against another top lefty, the Yankees‘ CC Sabathia. That‘s when Boesch was coming off the almost silent second half of his rookie season

Now he’s coming off a year in which he largely established himself (and was missed in the playoffs because of his thumb surgery), Monday, he showed how good he has become at hitting left-handers of different varieties. in the first inning, Boesch faced Mark Baehrle – a move-it-around craftsman, a totally different pitcher than Choate – and launched a high homer that cleared the palm trees beyond the rightfield fence and landed atop the enclosed batting cage How appropriate after this roof shot for Leyland to say that Boesch, 26, has “a real high ceiling.”

Leyland said Oliver will start for a Tigers‘ split squad against the Mets on Sunday, and Smyly will start against

Toronto on Monday in the second-to-tast game of the exhibition season. So the fifth-starter there by might go to the finish, Duane Below, who allowed one run to the Yankees in a start Sunday is the third contender for the open
rotation spot.

ROSTER MOVES: The Tigers sent six players to minor league camp Monday: right-handers Jacob
Turner and Chris Bootcheck;infieiders Audy Ciriaco, Argenis Diaz and Ryan Strieby; and outfielder Quintin Berry.Turner, ranked as the Tigers‘ top prospect by Baseball America, fell out of the running for the rotation opening when he was sidelined by tendinitis in his pitching arm.

Brennan Boesch

Tigers outfielder Brennan Boesch slowly hones swing

Brennan Boesch hit for the cycle.Sunday and Monday.He had a triple and single Sunday against the Phillies.He followed that with a home run and double Monday in a 3-3, 10-inning tie with the Marlins.It’s the unprecedented fifth tie this spring for the Tigers, by the way, making them 15-4-5.But back to Boesch.He got his hits Monday off left-handers: His fourth home run this spring, off Mark Buehrle; and a double off Randy Choate. That lifted his average to .265 after it was hovering around .210 a couple of days ago.


Boesch, Peralta boost Porcello against Fish

LAKELAND, Fla. — Brennan Boesch joined the list of Tigers on a home run spree this spring, hitting his fourth homer to support Rick Porcello in the latest chapter of his standout spring in a 3-3, 10-inning tie with the Marlins on Monday afternoon at Joker Marchant Stadium.

Boesch’s first-inning blast off the indoor batting cage building beyond right field came off longtime Tigers foe Mark Buehrle, now a Marlins starter after opposing Detroit for years with the White Sox. It gave the Tigers a 2-1 lead after third baseman Audy Ciriaco’s error and a Porcello wild pitch yielded an unearned run for the Marlins in the top of the inning.

Porcello, making his first start at Joker Marchant Stadium this spring following three starts on the road and another in a Minor League game at Tigertown, held down the Marlins’ offense from there, with help from a pair of ground-ball double plays. The sinkerballer induced 11 groundouts to help him on his way to seven innings.

Former Tigers infielder Omar Infante’s leadoff triple set up Miami’s second run in the seventh, leaving Jhonny Peralta’s fourth-inning solo shot as the difference in the game until Joaquin Benoit allowed a run in the ninth. Peralta, batting third with Miguel Cabrera out, went 3-for-3 to raise his spring average to .293.

Buehrle struck out five batters on his way to six innings of three-run ball. Chad Gaudin added a scoreless inning of relief for Miami.

Up next: While Andy Oliver makes his latest start in his quest for the fifth-starter spot, the Tigers could end up testing out much of their likely Opening Day lineup against Astros left-hander Wandy Rodriguez on Tuesday. All the position players left in camp, save for Cabrera, are scheduled to make the trip to Osceola County Stadium for the 1:05 p.m. ET matchup.


“It Might Have Been” by Scott Byrne

“For all sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these, “It might have been.’” -John Greenleaf Whittier

Just 3 short years ago, Brennan Boesch swashbuckling debut splashed across a splendid April evening in Arlington; his slashing stroke on a Rich Harden delivery launching the ball into the left-center gap for a double in his first MLB at bat. A week later, at Comerica Park, Brennan ripped his first dinger – a grand-slam that helped beat the Angels and began a storybook, Chris Shelton-esque first half. At the All-Star break, Boesch’s BA was .336, with 12 HR’s and a .996 OPS.

The 6’3″, 235 lb slugger with surfer-dude good looks had it all – he could hit the gaps or blast it over the fence, ran well enough to take an extra base or steal one, and produced as well vs. southpaws as righties. His outfield defense was a work in progress, but compared to an aging Magglio and pus-armed Johnny Damon, it was positively marvelous. It certainly seemed as if Boesch would be anchoring Kaline’s Corner for years to come.

We as fans can fondly recall Brennan’s brilliant Tiger moments – he certainly gave the ballclub his best, which makes those glimpses of his best so maddening. I have no doubt he will quickly find a new team willing to take him north at the end of the month – and it is a positive referendum on the state of Detroit’s roster that a player with such a skill set is expendable. The organization deserves kudos also – by all indication, Dave Dombrowski exhausted all potential trade avenues, and by releasing Boesch now, his chances of making a major league team by Opening Day are good.

He has an ever expanding fan club, galvanized by his slashing game-changing bat

We love Brennan Boesch. Who doesn’t? We were thrilled when at the start of the ’10 and ’11 seasons when he performed so well. He has the power. He has the personality. He has the smarts. And he has the looks…

But here’s what we like the most about Brennan Boesch, and one of the things we like the most about baseball: it doesn’t matter where your from, what your background is, or how much money you have. To make it in pro baseball you have to have talent, but more importantly you have to have ambition and drive. Brennan has all that, and he used it to get to where he is today. He took the hard way.

He also seems to have great personality and character, which isn’t something required of big leaguers, but certainly doesn’t hurt. He speaks Spanish to the hispanic players, who no doubt appreciate that. He seems to be friends with everyone, most notably Miguel Cabrera, and has quickly befriended newcomer Prince Fielder. He even spends a lot of time with other player’s kids–something he definitely doesn’t have to do.

Perhaps the coolest thing though is that Brennan has serious respect for the city of Detroit. In the aforementioned article he states: “I’m more Detroit than Southern California. If only I could bring the weather to Detroit, I’d be here. I love this area, everything about it.” The Royal Oak resident further goes on to say that “I just get really, really defensive about (Metro) Detroit. It bothers me…I got my GMC outside. I think it would be blasphemy for me to drive a Mercedes in Detroit.”

If that isn’t the quickest way to a Michiganders heart, than what is?

Combine this great clubhouse personality with massive potential and is it any mystery why he’s such a fan favorite? Of course, if he has a second-half dip for a third year in a row it could be potentially problematic, but we don’t really see that happening. We, along with countless other Tiger fans, have always, always admired Brennan for his bat, but now we should all give him more respect for his character as well. This is the kind of ballplayer that clubhouses, managers, GM’s and cities should love.

Somewhat surprisingly, this pretty-sappy-but-also-pretty-good article was written by Lynn Henning. Nice job, Lynn, but this one line had us literally dying laughing.

“He has an ever-expanding fan club in Detroit galvanized by his slashing, game changing bat, and by a certain mystique, crafted mostly because he’s a native of Hollywood’s backyard who looks and sounds as if he might have had a shot there.”

Brennan Boesch has a mystique? That sounds like something we’d have to judge for ourselves one day!

*Fingers crossed*


Brennan Boesch

Detroit Tigers agree to terms with Boesch for 2012

LAKELAND, Fla. — The Detroit Tigers announced today that they have agreed to terms on contracts for the 2012 season with right fielder Brennan Boesch. Boesch hit .283 with 16 home runs and 54 RBIs in 115 games for the Tigers last season before missing an extended period of time at the end of the season with a thumb injury. He is expected to be the everyday right fielder for the Tigers this season.


Tigers’ Boesch says he’s ready to go after injury

AP Sports Writer

LAKELAND, Fla. — When the Detroit Tigers made their run to the AL championship series last year, Brennan Boesch wasn’t able to play.

Instead, Boesch could only watch while the Tigers beat the New York Yankees in the division series and then fell in six games to Texas with a World Series berth on the line. He missed the entire postseason with a right thumb injury that required surgery.

“It’s tough,” the 26-year-old outfielder said. “You can’t necessarily do anything about it. You just try to be as supportive as you can with your team and try to cheerlead them on.”

It’s hard to say how much Detroit’s chances of winning the American League pennant might have improved with Boesch in the lineup, but he’s ready to put his injury behind him and return to a batting order that became even more powerful over the offseason. Boesch is penciled in to hit second for the Tigers, right in front of sluggers Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder.

“I think I’m a good fit in that spot. I got some experience in the two hole last year and it was a bit of an adjustment, just getting up five times a game,” Boesch said. “With this lineup, I’d hit ninth, I’d hit seventh, I’d lead off, I don’t care. The depth of this lineup is very strong.”

Boesch was a bit of a sensation when he made his debut in 2010, hitting .342 with 12 home runs before the All-Star break. He regressed significantly after that, hitting .163 the rest of the way, but he finished his first year with 14 homers and 67 RBIs.

Last season, Boesch improved his batting average (from .256 to .283) and on-base percentage (from .320 to .341) and hit 16 homers in 115 games.

But he was also battling a nagging thumb injury.

“I was playing with it for quite some time, and it just got to a point where I couldn’t go anymore, so I wasn’t productive and I wasn’t helping myself or the team out,” Boesch said. “At this point it feels great.”

Boesch didn’t have an at-bat after August. He said there was some thought of trying to come back if the Tigers had reached the World Series, but he doesn’t think that would have been realistic.

Boesch started 45 games in right field in 2011 and 54 in left. Manager Jim Leyland would like to let him stick more to right field.

“I think with the type of personality Boesch is — a little bit hyper — I want to settle him in,” Leyland said.

The Tigers beefed up the middle of their order by signing Fielder in the offseason, but it’s important for the hitters at the top to get on base. Leadoff man Austin Jackson will try to improve on his .317 on-base percentage from last year, and it will be Boesch’s job to keep rallies going.

“He’s got some pop in that two hole and I like that,” Leyland said. “That’s kind of the way our lineup sets up.”

The left-handed hitting Boesch may also be able to take advantage of the hole on the right side of the infield when Jackson is on base. Don’t expect much bunting from the 6-foot-4, 235-pound Boesch — but despite his size, he’s not that much of a double play risk, having hit into only 12 in two seasons.

“I like Boesch in that spot, because he’s really not a double play guy,” Leyland said. “He runs good enough that he beats out a lot of double play balls.”

Last year, Boesch needed to show he could be more consistent and establish more of a true performance level after the bizarre extremes of 2010. Now he simply needs to stay healthy and fill an important role for a Detroit team with plenty of stars.

“You try to build off each year, and I felt last year that I was on my way to having a solid year before it got shut down with the injury,” Boesch said. “But you can only judge the time that I was healthy and I’m perfectly OK with how I did. I want to build on it this year.”

Game notes
Leyland said 2B Brandon Inge will start the team’s spring training game Saturday against the Atlanta Braves. … Leyland said RHP Doug Fister will start that game on the mound, with RHP Collin Balester, LHP Phil Coke, LHP Daniel Schlereth, RHP David Pauley and RHP Jacob Turner also likely to pitch.


Brennan Boesch

Detroit Tigers’ Jim Leyland wants Brennan Boesch to be team’s everyday right fielder

LAKELAND, Fla. — Detroit Tigers outfielder, Brennan Boesch, has split the majority of his time in right and left field the past two years. That isn’t the plan for him this season.

Tigers manager Jim Leyland said Thursday that he’d prefer to make Boesch the team’s everyday right fielder in 2012.

“I really think it will be good for this club if Brennan Boesch could play right field every day for the Detroit Tigers this year,” Leyland said. “I think that’d be good for our team.”

Of Boesch’s 231 career outfield appearances, 130 have been made in right.

Boesch, 26, started 45 games in right field last season, primarily platooning with Magglio Ordonez before a nagging thumb injury cut his season short. He made 57 starts in left.

Leyland was reluctant to call the move permanent, saying there could be a rare occasion Boesch would shift to left field during the course of a game.

“You might have to make a move that says ‘That guy is more comfortable in right so let’s move Boesch over,’” Leyland said. “So, I’m not going to etch it in stone.”

Leyland identified center field and right field as two positions that are “locked in” and said he needed to “tinker around a little bit” with left.