Tigers shut down Matt Manning, Alex Faedo for season with 'slight' forearm strains
Detroit — There really was no other way for the Tigers to do this.
General manager Al Avila announced Thursday that pitching prospects Matt Manning and Alex Faedo were both being shut down for the remainder of the season due to “slight” strains in their right forearms.
“As opposed to just trying to push them through and see if we could get them through this, with the short period of time we have left we felt it was more prudent to just shut them down and continue with a rehab process,” Avila said.
Faedo, ranked No. 10 in the Tigers system by MLBPipeline, missed all of summer camp battling through the effects of COVID-19. Manning, ranked No. 3, had struggled with his mechanics both in Lakeland and through summer camp.
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“Faedo got the late start and had to play catch-up from the get-go,” Avila said. “Manning, he was maybe trying to do too much. With a month left, it’s not worth trying to get them back in a rushed manner. If this were a normal year where we had six months or a full season, we could’ve gone through a full rehab process and get back to pitching in the minor leagues.
“We’re just going to look at it in a smarter way and just be more conservative and take our time. We’re looking at next year for them now.”
Avila said the players were examined by four specialists, including the Tigers’ Dr. Stephen Lemos.
“We wanted to be super cautious,” Avila said. “We just wanted to be sure we were right in our assessment, that it was not going to be a big deal and we were prescribing the right course of rehab.”
The Tigers have open spots in the 60-man player pool and Avila said it’s possible the club would add a prospect or two and bring them to the alternative site in Toledo.
“We feel we are OK right now,” Avila said, regarding the taxi squad. “We do have a list of players outside the organization who, if we needed to in an emergency go out and sign. But right now, we are looking at adding prospects from within the organization.
“We may have something on that by the end of the week.”
Where does Nova fit?
Avila said veteran starter Ivan Nova, out with a triceps injury, is nearing the end of his rehab stint in Toledo. The Tigers, though, have a full rotation with Matthew Boyd, Spencer Turnbull, Michael Fulmer and rookies Casey Mize and Tarik Skubal.
Avila was asked if using a six-man rotation has been discussed.
"We haven't discussed that, but that doesn't mean it couldn't happen," he said. "We haven't discussed whether he'll got right into the bullpen or back into the rotation, or will we make a different move.
"We're going to wait until he's 100-percent healthy and he's back with us. Between now and then a lot of things could happen."
Avila said Jordan Zimmermann (forearm strain) is also ramping up his rehab stint, throwing in simulated games and live batting practices in Toledo.
Daz Cameron update
Avila also shed some light on another prospect, outfielder Daz Cameron, the No. 7-rated prospect who missed summer camp dealing with the effects of COVID-19.
"He needs more at-bats," Avila said. "We like him a lot but he's missed a lot of time, unfortunately."
Cameron has been rehabbing and trying to regain strength in Toledo. Avila said it was likely he would come off the injured list at some point this weekend. But, he will remain in Toledo likely for the rest of the year.
"If there is an instructional league to be played in this fall, or a winter league, hopefully he can participate and get some work, some at-bats, to be ready to go in 2021," Avila said.
Avila was asked if there'd been discussion of possibly re-signing Austin Romine or Jonathan Schoop, two players who were signed to one-year deals last winter, especially since both are earning prorated portions of their salary.
"It's too early too early to think about who we're going to sign this offseason," Avila said. "There's too much uncertainty about 2021. We don't know if we're going to play a full season. We don't know if we're going to play with a full stadium, with 50-percent capacity or 20-percent capacity.
"We just have to wait and see."
Around the horn
Avila said catcher Jake Rogers, barring an injury to either Romine or Grayson Greiner, will likely stay in Toledo for the remainder of the season. If MLB allows rosters to expand for the final few weeks, which is not expected right now, then maybe Rogers would get promoted.
... Avila also said there was no official word on when the Tigers doubleheader with the Cardinals will be made up. "I am assuming it will be made up at the end of the season, if it's necessary," he said. "But that's just my assumption. I haven't heard anything official."
... Prospects Spencer Torkelson, Riley Greene and Dillon Dingler were all getting positive reports from their work in Toledo. But Avila said none of those players will be called up to the big leagues this season.