Tigers choose Will Rhymes as Opening Day second baseman

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Carlos Guillen’s slower-than-expected recovery from knee surgery forced the Tigers to consider other options at second base and after giving some thought to sacrificing defense for offense with Ryan Raburn manager Jim Leyland has settled on Will Rhymes.

Rhymes actually led the Tigers in second base starts last season with 46 and in giving him the job until Guillen returns they also sent last year’s Opening Day second baseman, Scott Sizemore, back to Triple-A.

Sizemore is in danger of falling out of the Tigers’ plans less than a year after looking like their long-term answer at second base, as injuries derailed him and he failed to turn heads in the minors.

Rhymes hit well in 54 games as a 27-year-old rookie, but based on his modest track record he’s probably not a long-term answer either. He is on Twitter, though.

Orioles acquire Alec Asher from the Phillies

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The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.

Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.

Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.

Ervin Santana gets Opening Day nod from Twins again

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Ervin Santana will once again start on Opening Day for the Twins, MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger reports. He’ll face the Royals at home in a day game on Monday, April 3.

The last pitcher to start back-to-back Opening Days for the Twins was Carl Pavano in 2011-12.

Santana, 34, is entering the third year of a four-year, $55 million contract signed in December 2014. Last season, the right-hander finished with a solid 3.38 ERA and a 149/53 K/BB ratio over 181 1/3 innings.