The Tigers magic number to win the AL Central still remains at two after a 6-3 loss to the Chicago White Sox earlier today. Even though it is a foregone conclusion that this team will make the playoffs already, they technically still have some work to do to officially make it into October.
Add that with the fact that the Tigers last three games are on the road in Miami and it all has manager Jim Leyland less than thrilled. Here is a snippet of what he had to say to the Detroit News:
I don’t mind interleague play at the end of a season. If that’s what they want to do, that’s fine, but it should be in an American League park… If we’re fortunate enough to get in (to the postseason) and Victor (Martinez) doesn’t play in Miami, with four days after that before the playoffs start, that’s like what we’ve gone through a couple of times here before the World Series.
But (finishing in an NL city), you risk a pitcher getting hit by a pitch, pulling a muscle in batting practice or running the bases. It’s silly. Point blank silly.
Leyland mentioned that he may be forced to have Victor catch at least one game of the series to keep his bat in the lineup and keep the rust off as well. But with Martinez having ACL surgery a little over a year ago, Leyland correctly is skeptical of putting the extra strain on Martinez’s knees that close to the playoffs.
Victor has been hot since the All-Star break, with the most hits in the major leagues since the mid-summer classic. Anything that will disturb his current hot streak is something that Tigers fans and the front office are looking to avoid.
So what do you think Tigers fans, should Martinez catch during the season finale series in Miami or should three pinch-hit at bats be enough to keep his bat hot heading into the playoffs? Let us know at DetroitSportsBloggers.com or on Facebook and Twitter.