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Let the Games Begin

Alright, the Tigers are set to kick off their spring season in their annual exhibition opener tomorrow against Florida Southern tomorrow.  Game time is one pm and Andrew Oliver will get the start.  Jason Beck also has the starting lineup over at his site and it pretty much looks like what people are expecting to see when the season opens.

Let’s say this is the lineup Leyland is going to go with on opening day.  It looks solid although I’d have Delmon Young hitting below Avila and Peralta if it’s a right hander on the mound but we saw this last year when Young hit third regardless of who was on the mound.  I’ve never been happy with Jim Leyland’s lineup construction and I didn’t plan on starting now so I figured he’d be hitting a little higher then I’d like.

Ryan Raburn is hitting last.  I kind of like this.  I know the whole mental aspect of the game can’t be quantified but maybe you can equate hitting ninth to putting less pressure on a guy and maybe Raburn will end his streak of poor first halfs.

Andy Dirks the designated hitter.  My guess is, unless somebody catches fire, that the DH is going to be a revolving door.  If they want to get Inge a spot at second, then maybe Raburn will shift out to the outfield and Young will be the DH.  Or they want to give Cabrera a day off on the field so he fills in there.  I also don’t see anyone in the minors stepping up and taking it as a full time role but we will see.  It’s interesting seeing the DH hit eighth though.

After Florida Southern, the official spring season starts with the Tigers on the road against the Braves on Saturday then at home against the Braves on Sunday.  There’s only one off day and that’s the 22nd but there’s only three split squad games and they’re all on Sunday.  First night game is the 13th against the Nationals. In fact it’s one of just two evening games on the schedule with the other also being against Washington.

I read who’s starting on Saturday but now the name is escaping me.  I want to say it’s Doug Fister, but don’t hold me to it.

I also figured out which package I’m going to get and I’ve decided to just go with At Bat on my phone instead of buying the entire television package.  Most nights I listened to the Tigers game and that’s it and most of the time it was on the phone so that’ll save me a $100.  If I really miss it or have more time, then maybe when the price goes down midseason I’ll pick MLB.TV back up.

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