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Trammell to fill in as first base coach Saturday

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News

Boston — Tigers first base coach Omar Vizquel had to leave the team Saturday morning after learning that his father had died suddenly in Venezuela.

“Omar said his father hadn't been ailing at all,” manager Brad Ausmus said. “He said he was healthy. So it was real sudden.”

Stepping in for Vizquel will be a very familiar face. Alan Trammell, special assistant to general manager Dave Dombrowski, will be coaching first base for the next few games.

“Just really sorry to hear about Omar and the death in his family,” said Trammell, former Tigers manager, bench coach and shortstop for two decades. “This is just another way for me to help out anyway I can, which is what I said from day one. I am glad I could be here if something like this would pop up.”

Trammell, who has been scouting and assessing the team’s minor league affiliates in recent months, was with the club for this three-city trip to be with Dombrowski and assistant general manager Al Avila in the days leading up to the July 31 trade deadline.

The Tigers front office is scheduled to meet in Tampa.

“This was planned a couple of months in advance,” Trammell said.

Trammell served as first base coach in San Diego from 2000-2002 and helped out there with the Tigers this past spring training in a couple of split-squad games.

“I’ve gone over the signs with Clarky (third base coach Dave Clark),” Trammell said. “It’s not rocket science. I’ve done it before, though it’s been a while. But I am comfortable.”

Ausmus said he had two other options – defensive coordinator and video replay man Matt Martin and assistant hitting coach David Newhan.

“I’d rather have Matt stay on the replay, which he has done all year,” Ausmus said. “And Victor (Martinez) uses David quite a bit between at-bats. Tram has experience, decades of it.”

Trammell, who wore No. 3 his entire career in Detroit, will wear No. 4 these next few games. Ian Kinsler presently wears No. 3.

“Yeah, Bobby Higginson, Tony Phillips, Omar Infante,” he said of former Tigers who wore No. 4. “Honestly, it doesn’t bother me a bit. I am just glad I can help out.”

Twitter @cmccosky