The Tigers benched Justin Upton on Thursday, the second of three planned off days

Leon Halip/Getty Images
9 Comments

Outfielder Justin Upton was once again absent from the starting lineup for Thursday afternoon’s game against the Red Sox. Tigers manager Brad Ausmus plans to sit him for Friday’s game too in order to clear his head and “hit the reset button,” Mlive.com’s Evan Woodbery reports.

Upton, 28, has had a miserable first year in Detroit after signing a six-year, $132.75 million contract in January. He’s hitting .226/.281/.371 with 13 home runs and 46 RBI in 470 plate appearances. According to wRC+, an all-encompassing major league stat, Upton has offensively been 29 percent worse than a league-average hitter, by far the worst mark among any full season in his career.

That includes a particularly horrid stretch recently. As Woodbery notes, Upton has only one hit in his last 31 at-bats. Over his last 50 at-bats, he has only five hits and 15 strikeouts.