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Jim Leyland expects Ryan Raburn to catch fire soon and return to his former utility. Too bad the Detroit Tigers' keystoner will have to do so at Triple-A Toledo, his new home after he blew a "last straw" opportunity by going 0-for-4 with three backwards K's in a favorable matchup Tuesday.
The 2012 numbers: .146/.209/.211 with a homer and seven RBIs in 135 at-bats. Yikes. His numerous avenues for playing time and tepid intrigue generated by a few solid partial seasons masked a horrid history of contact efficiency and below-average (subterranean) batting-eye ratios that jeopardized his output.
Raburn is a known slow starter, though, so maybe a few reshufflings can get him back to deep-mixed depth allure. There's still enough power here to justify holding him there, but any 12-team mixers and above should be less inclined.
A roster replacement won't be announced until later Wednesday, and skip said it won't be a second baseman, so that, along with him being a mere 21 years old, rules out Single-A Lakeland and 40-man roster inhabitant Hernan Perez.
To fill the at-bats, Leyland looks to be employing a very Leylandish solution: split 'em between the ever-exciting pair of Ramon Santiago and Danny Worth. The former, being a switch hitter, presumably would earn playing-time favor, but mixed-leaguers shouldn't care about either one, and their AL-only value is further clouded by the equally stagnant Don Kelly.
Bored? Don't blame you.
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum, who competes in the prestigious LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
He appears frequently, including every Sunday, on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, as well as every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore.
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