Tigers' win-now approach puts Greene in bullpen

Tony Paul
The Detroit News
Shane Greene, pitching for the Tigers for the first time since April 24, delivers in the seventh inning Saturday.

Detroit -- The Tigers are a bit split on where they see Shane Greene long-term. Same with Buck Farmer.

Greene (blister), activated from the disabled list after Friday's game, will move from the rotation to the bullpen. Farmer, demoted to Triple-A Toledo to make room for Greene, will move, for now, from the bullpen to the Mud Hens' rotation, as he was set to start Game 2 of a doubleheader Saturday.

Greene could see some work in the seventh or eighth inning for the Tigers, especially with Mark Lowe struggling.

He also won't be limited to three outs, either, given he's been mostly a starter, and is stretched.

"He definitely could work a couple of innings," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said before Saturday's second game of the series with the White Sox at Comerica Park. "I don't really see him as a long man, per se."

Greene's move to the bullpen had more to do with that being the role the Tigers think helps them win now, than the worry of his blister opening back up.

Ausmus said once the skin tightens, it typically isn't an issue the rest of the season.

As for Farmer, who continues to be bounced back and forth between Detroit and Toledo, Ausmus said he's seen improvement.

He had a good outing last time out, two innings of scoreless baseball, with three strikeouts, against the New York Yankees on Thursday.

"He kind of got rushed to the big leagues," Ausmus said of Farmer, drafted in 2013 and in the big leagues the next year. "He's definitely more comfortable."

Farmer's latest trip to Toledo won't be permanent. The Tigers are seeing, for now, what they have in veteran Bobby Parnell. The jury's still out.

Worth noting

J.D. Martinez isn't alone.

Apparently, the Tigers have a pair of "Dear Diary" boys.

Cameras the other day caught catcher James McCann scribbling in a notebook in the dugout, something that's been a Martinez staple for some time. Turns out, McCann has been doing it since the minors, just like Martinez. He just usually does it a little more discreetly.

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"I've done it since A ball," McCann said. "I have a notebook for every year.

"There's not a lot of (scouting reports) in the minor leagues."

While Martinez writes down observations about his every at-bat and how the opposing pitcher has tried to approach him, McCann jots down the same analysis -- but also keeps notes on how he's called games against certain hitters.

Martinez and McCann share their notes a lot.

But while Miguel Cabrera likes to have fun at Martinez's expense, often doodling pictures in his notebook during games, not so much with McCann's. He keeps his hidden.

Around the horn

Due to some family obligations, Tigers radio man Dan Dickerson missed Friday's game and will miss Monday's game. FSD's John Keating replaced him on the call Friday, and Ken Kal, voice of the Red Wings, will call the action Monday.

... Justin Upton got another day of rest, as his struggles continued. Mike Aviles played left field, his third straight start at three different positions. Aviles has had some good swings lately, and has shown an impressive arm in the field.

... The Tigers held a moment of silence before Saturday's game for legendary boxer Muhammad Ali, who died Friday night at age 74. Ali spent much of post-retirement life living in southwest Michigan.

... Saturday was the Tigers' 22nd annual Negro Leagues Tribute game. The Tigers wore white Detroit Stars uniforms, the White Sox blue Chicago American Giants jerseys.

... Former Tigers manager Jim Leyland will be in the team's draft war room Thursday; he did it for the first time last year, and David Chadd invited him back. "I really enjoyed it," Leyland said.

tpaul@detroitnews.com

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