Delmon Young is back from his seven-day suspension and to make room for his return to the roster the Tigers designated Brad Eldred for assignment.
Eldred was called up last week after absolutely destroying Triple-A pitching and manager Jim Leyland talked about “running him out there” to see if he could provide some power, but he’s a 31-year-old journeyman with a sub par track record in the majors and obviously the Tigers weren’t exactly committed to giving him an extended look.
Leyland has already said that Young won’t immediately rejoin the starting lineup because he hasn’t been with the team in a week and the manager first wants him to get some practice reps. And of course Young was also hitting just .242 with a .644 OPS in 18 games before being arrested in New York last Thursday night/Friday morning on assault and hate crime charges.
While newly-acquired talent Danny Espinosa was off collecting hits for the Blue Jays against the Orioles, Marcus Stroman led a youth-filled roster against the Canadian Junior National Team in a split-squad game on Saturday. In the eighth inning, 17-year-old Canadian pitcher Braden Halladay took the mound to honor his late father’s memory against his former team.
Halladay accomplished just that, wielding a fastball that topped out in the low-80s and setting down a perfect 1-2-3 inning against the top of the lineup. No one batter saw more than a single pitch from the right-hander: Mc Gregory Contreras and Mattingly Romanin flew out to the outfield corners and Bo Bichette laid down a ground ball for an easy third out.
MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm has a fantastic profile of the high school junior, including his approach to the game and his attempt to do Roy Halladay proud while carving out his own path to the majors. “From a pitching standpoint, it was everything I could have asked for and more,” Halladay told reporters. “Especially now, every time I make mistakes, I still hear him drilling me about them in my head, just because he’s done it so many times before. From a mind-set standpoint, I don’t think with any bias that I could have had a better teacher.”