6/25/2014 2:25 A.M. ET
Ausmus throwing ASG support behind Kinsler
By Jason Beck / MLB.com
ARLINGTON -- Manager Brad Ausmus is throwing his support behind the campaign to help Ian Kinsler gain some All-Star votes in the race for the starting job at second base for the American League.
To Ausmus, Kinsler's performance is worthy of an All-Star spot.
"Absolutely, no question," Ausmus said.
Kinsler entered the week trailing Seattle's Robinson Cano by just under 670,000 votes. Voting runs through Thursday, July 3, at 11:59 p.m. ET.
Some of that encouragement was a vote of support for All-Star consideration. Some of it, too, was a good word for Kinsler and his impact on the local media upon his return to Texas.
"I played against Kins, and I always knew he was a good player," Ausmus said, "but I didn't know the guy. And he has been a breath of fresh air. I've really enjoyed having him around. He's a blue-collar player. He's a baseball rat. He loves the little things in the game that can help the team win, steal a base, get a hit or make a play. He's been great."
Fans can cast their votes for starters at MLB.com -- online or on a mobile device -- using the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Experian. The 2014 All-Star Game will be played at Target Field on Tuesday, July 15 on FOX.
Tigers reacquire Schlereth in deal with Bucs
ARLINGTON -- The latest left-hander in the Triple-A Toledo bullpen is a familiar face who has been there before. With Patrick McCoy and Blaine Hardy both up with the Tigers for the near future, Detroit reacquired Daniel Schlereth from Pittsburgh on Tuesday for cash considerations, sources confirmed to MLB.com. The Tigers haven't confirmed the deal.
John Wagner, the esteemed Mud Hens beat writer for the Toledo Blade, was the first to report the move. Schlereth was immediately assigned to the Mud Hens. Since he wasn't on Pittsburgh's 40-man roster, no big league roster move had to be made.
Schlereth's previous Tigers tenure ended in Toledo two years ago, when he was on a rehab assignment in August, recovering from a partial left labrum tear. Schlereth did not get a September callup, and he ended up being non-tendered after the 2012 World Series. He spent last year at Triple-A in the O's system, then signed last offseason with the Pirates.
"Great to be back," Schlereth said in a text message to MLB.com. "I feel like I'm at home now."
Schlereth's numbers at Indy weren't pretty: 18 2/3 innings, 18 hits, 19 runs (15 earned) 18 walks, 18 strikeouts and five hit batsmen. Nine of those runs (six earned) scored since May 30, a span of four outings in which Schlereth allowed six hits and three walks over 4 2/3 innings.
Left-handed batters have hit 7-for-30 against Schlereth this year, but he has walked seven others and hit three more.
The deal is purely a depth move for Toledo at this point. Though Schlereth made 73 appearances in Detroit over a three-year stretch after being acquired from Arizona in the three-team trade involving Max Scherzer and Curtis Granderson, he's not in the Tigers' picture.
Moya, Thompson earn spots on Futures rosters
ARLINGTON -- Steven Moya was an intriguing name relatively buried on the Tigers' list of prospects before his breakout Spring Training drew attention. His performance since then has landed him a spot in next month's MLB All-Star Futures Game.
Moya was named an outfielder on the World Team, and former top pick and Class A Lakeland right-hander Jake Thompson was named to the U.S. team.
Moya's selection is the latest big step in what has been a rapid rise up the ranks. Scouts have long viewed him as a boom-or-bust prospect, his success hinging on how his big swing adapts to advanced pitching as well as how healthy he could stay after several injury-shortened seasons. So far this season, the signs suggest he's making the adjustment.
Moya's 16 home runs entering Tuesday are already a career best, but part of that resulted from an adjustment from the pitcher-friendly Florida State League to the smaller ballparks of the Eastern League. The more encouraging signs are in the percentages.
With 18 doubles, Moya is one off his career high, resulting in a career-best .804 OPS. His strikeout rate has tempered slightly, though his ratio of 82 strikeouts to just eight walks remains a concern.
More surprisingly, his first season under new Erie manager Lance Parrish has brought out some aggressiveness on the basepaths. His 12 stolen bases in 16 attempts already doubles his career best.
At 22, Moya still has room for growth. He entered the year ranked 20th on MLB.com's list of top Tigers prospects but is expected to jump up the midseason list.
The 20-year-old Thompson, Detroit's second-round pick in 2012, has matured from a nice high school prospect into a blossoming young pitcher. He has a 6-2 record and 2.43 ERA in 13 starts, and has allowed just 53 hits over 66 2/3 innings, with 24 walks and 66 strikeouts.
He ranked third on the list of Tigers' prospects going into the season.
Torii rests one more day with matchups in play
ARLINGTON -- Torii Hunter was healthy and available to play in Tuesday's series opener against the Rangers. He was also 2-for-22 lifetime off Texas starter Colby Lewis.
So although Wednesday is expected to mark Hunter's return to the lineup and the start of Brad Ausmus' outfield rotation, Tuesday seemingly marked the first day of Ausmus playing his outfield by matchups. Ausmus gave Hunter one extra day of rest, but Hunter's struggles off Lewis surely made the decision to be patient easier.
"I don't want to make any predictions," Ausmus said on Tuesday afternoon. "I'm sure it'll be a little bit of both [matchups and rotations]."
Hunter spent Monday's off-day resting in his own bed at his home in nearby Prosper. He made it through all of his required workouts on Sunday without any issues, and he did some early work running on the field at Globe Life Park.
Ausmus said after Tuesday's 8-2 win that Hunter will be in the lineup on Wednesday night. So, too, he said, will J.D. Martinez, who has homered in five of his last eight games and has a 13-game hitting streak.
That means either left fielder Rajai Davis or center fielder Austin Jackson will get a day off.
Ausmus insists that finding time for four outfielders shouldn't be terribly complicated. He also doesn't expect to be resting Hunter much more often than usual.
"Even before J.D. [Martinez] heated up, there were times -- basically once a week -- that I would give Torii a day anyway," Ausmus said. "So I don't think that's going to be an issue. And when Torii's swinging the bat the way he normally does, this guy can still hit. So he's still going to get the bulk of the playing time in the outfield."