Detroit Tigers to Call Up Tyler Collins, Victor Martinez’s Status Unknown


Reports have confirmed that Tyler Collins is being called up to join the Detroit Tigers. Does this mean Victor Martinez will be placed on the disabled list?

Tony Paul of the Detroit News reported this morning that the Detroit Tigers are calling up Tyler Collins from AAA Toledo to join their big league roster.

"Outfielder Tyler Collins received word late Monday night that he is coming up to Detroit from Triple-A Toledo, a source familiar with the move told The News.Collins, 24, entered spring training as a favorite to make the Opening Day roster, but the Tigers decided they didn’t need a fifth outfielder, so utilityman Hernan Perez won his spot, instead."

There’s no official word on a corresponding move, but there are two plausible explanations. The most likely, it seems, would be Victor Martinez making a trip to the disabled list. The veteran designated hitter has been struggling at the plate this season while plagued with nagging knee injuries. He began hobbling again after trying (and failing) to beat out a double play in the eighth inning of Monday night’s loss to the Milwaukee Brewers.

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The other possibility would be designating seldom-used infielder Hernan Perez for assignment. Perez has appeared in 16 games for the Tigers, but only four of those came as a member of the starting lineup. Most of his appearances have been made for just an inning or two as a pinch hitter, runner, or defensive replacement. Perez is hitting just 087/.087/.087 in 23 plate appearances and is mostly redundant with Andrew Romine.

Either way though, the decision is probably being made because of Martinez. Even if it’s Perez that is ousted from the roster, it would be more to throw an extra hitter/outfielder into the mix to allow Martinez to recover on the fly and less because the team is simply fed up with Perez’s lack of production to date. It seems apparent that Victor is going to need more days off, even if he’s not placed on the disabled list.

Paul has been working to confirm the corresponding move, but so far nothing is known other than Collins is coming up to join the team.

Collins got off to a slow start with the Toledo Mud Hens, but his numbers have been mostly trending up lately. His power is down (no home runs yet), but he’s gotten on base at a nice .338 clip thanks to an 11% walk rate.

Collins has a history of hitting at the AAA level and has some experience facing major league pitching as well, so the Tigers obviously feel comfortable with him being a player that can be plugged in with reasonable production expectations. He’s not destined to be a star or anything, but as a left-handed hitter, he could certainly provide positive value in a platoon or reserve role.

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