Detroit – Manager Brad Ausmus said before the game Tuesday that right-hander Shane Greene was “unlikely” to make his next start on Friday in Minnesota.
A blister on Greene’s right middle finger split open during his start on Sunday.
Ausmus, though, said no decision has been made on who might make the spot start. Buck Farmer was recalled from Toledo before the game, but Ausmus made it clear he was here to work out of the bullpen.
“It could be (Matt) Boyd, it could be (Michael Fulmer), it could be (Daniel) Norris,” Ausmus said, of potential spot-starters.
Norris, who had been on the disabled list with a back injury, was removed from his rehab assignment and optioned to Toledo. He threw 87 pitches in his start for the Mud Hens Monday night.
It seems unlikely the Tigers would start Norris on short rest so soon after coming off the disabled list.
That leaves left-hander Boyd, who pitched 4.2 scoreless innings in relief of Greene Sunday, or right-hander Fulmer as options to pitch Friday. The fact that the Twins have struggled against left-handed pitching this season (.227 average with just two home runs) would play in Boyd’s favor.
However, for it to be Boyd, Greene would have to go on the disabled list. Boyd was sent back to Toledo after the game Sunday. Unless he was replacing an injured player, he’d have to wait 10 days before being recalled.
“We haven’t made any decision, yet,” Ausmus said.
Farmer replaced right-hander Jose Valdez, who was sent back to Toledo Monday night.
Farmer, who began the season with the Tigers and pitched well, was initially sent to Toledo on April 15. The Tigers had to wait a minimum of 10 days to recall him, which is why Valdez was summoned for a day.
Also, James McCann was sent to Toledo Tuesday to begin his rehab assignment. McCann is coming back from a right ankle sprain. It is expected to be a four-game assignment.
“He will DH tonight, catch seven innings, DH again, then catch nine innings and we will reevaluate after that,” Ausmus said.
A’s at Tigers
First pitch: 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Comerica Park, Detroit
RHP Sonny Gray (3-1, 2.73), A’s: He’s already beaten the White Sox and Royals this month. His fastball-sinker-curve combination is generating a 60 percent ground ball rate. He’s also struck out 24 in 26 1/3 innings. In his only other outing at Comerica, he blanked the Tigers on two hits over eight innings.
RHP Justin Verlander (1-2, 5.79), Tigers: Something clicked in his last start. He gave up a home run to Carlos Santana to lead off the game, then allowed three hits the rest of the seven innings he worked, striking out 10. There was late life on his fastball and his breaking ball and off-speed pitches were crisp.