February 21, 2014 at 1:17 pm

Tom Gage

Tigers manager Brad Ausmus shouldn't be put out over playing career

Tigers manager Brad Ausmus is third on the all-time list of catchers for putouts. (Elizabeth Conley / Detroit News)

Gage’s 140 (words, not characters) from Lakeland, Fla.

Ask ex-Tigers manager Jim Leyland about his career, and he’d grumble about being a lousy hitter.

Ask current Tigers manager Brad Ausmus about his career, and he also prefers to remember the defensive side of it more than the offensive.

For instance, Ausmus is third on the all-time list of catchers for putouts, which he knew.

But I also asked Ausmus this question Friday of his career: At what ballpark where you had at least 100 at-bats did you hit the highest?

He had no clue.

His guess of Wrigley Field was way wrong.

It turned out to be Shea Stadium at .307.

“I don’t like to look at my own offensive stats,” he said. “They put me in a state of depression.”

They shouldn’t.

You had 1,579 major-league hits, Brad.

Your predecessor would have given anything for just one.