February 27, 2014 at 4:36 pm

Tom Gage

Tigers' Opening Day order still a mystery

Francisco Martinez was the Tigers' DH in Thursday's exhibition game. (Robin Buckson / Detroit News)

Gageís 140 (words, not characters)

Lakeland, Fla. ó Itís clear already that you will not be able to detect manager Brad Ausmusí batting-order plans for the Tigers from his early spring lineups.

The order for the spring home opener on Thursday, for instance, had Jose Iglesias leading off, Torii Hunter at cleanup and Austin Jackson batting sixth.

Martinez was at DH, but it was Francisco Martinez, who is a prospect again in the organization, not Victor.

More pertinent to the way the 2014 Tigers will look is the fact that five pitchers in line for a spot on the staff will pitch, including first looks at Ian Krol, Joba Chamberlain and Joe Nathan.

That number gets bumped to six if you include Luke Putkonen whoíll also pitch today ó and always seems to be knocking on the door of a permanent spot.

As he is again this season.