By:  Holly Horning & Kurt Snyder

Today’s topic is a good one. It is centered on the return of Nick Castellanos to the lineup after missing 46 games with a broken hand. Our writers will share their thoughts on this development which should be interesting.

Kurt and Holly have not shared their answers to this Thursday question, but both can’t wait to see what the other has to say.

What’s your take on the sudden, surprising return of Nick Castellanos?


When Nick’s hand was broken, doctors said that it would take an average of 8 weeks to heal, putting his return near the very end of the season, if at all. As late as last weekend, Ausmus indicated that he still wasn’t sure if Nick would be participating again this year and if so, it would be in Atlanta for the last series of the year.

Then something interesting happened. Nick’s agent got involved – making lots of phone calls and being publicly vocal about how Nick was ready to return. How much of a noise did he create? Enough to make the perpetually calm Brad Ausmus ticked off enough to make a public comment criticizing Nick’s rep.

Then, the next day, Ausmus mentioned the possibility that Castellanos may be able to return for the last game against Cleveland on Thursday. But on Tuesday, one day later, we read that Nick is rushing back on a plane in order to make that night’s game. Plane travel that was arranged by Mr. I.

And for the 2 innings since his arrival, Nick was like grass-on-dirt with Ausmus – pestering him non-stop about getting in the game.

But was Brad going on the progress reports from Nick’s rehab in Florida? Was he trying to be careful about not exacerbating Nick’s injury? And how much influence did Castellanos’ agent have with Al Avila and Mr. I? Is it a coincidence that Nick was reactivated from the DL less than 36 hours after it was reported he was making a push for Nick’s return?

Was it all about Nick getting back into the game? Or did it have to deal with a sense of urgency coming from Al Avila and Mr. I? Did they see that Brad did not have the highest level of urgency they needed when it came to winning a playoff spot?

Did Mr. I or Al – or both – override their manager in order to ensure the Tigers pulled out every available stop that is a required step in playoff baseball?

The percentages of success seem to change every hour for our Tigers. And it’s conceivable that Nick could be that factor that pulls them into October.


What was it a week ago that Nick couldn’t get through batting practice without pain? And now suddenly, he’s ready to go?

If we have learned anything about how the Tigers handle injuries, well, let’s just say their track record has not been good. They failed miserably in handling Jordan Zimmermann, bringing him back too early, which promptly sent him back to the DL. Then for Round 2, they threw him back in the fire, again too early, not ready to pitch, and he got hammered and hasn’t started a game since.

Now here comes Nick, back in the lineup. Does this smell of desperation to you, maybe at the expense of Castellanos? He did look good at the plate Tuesday night, doubling in the 8th inning in pinch hit duty. So maybe the Tigers judged this one correctly.

Well hold on, there I was Wednesday night, writing of course, Nick’s at the plate and I hear Gibby say, “looks like he felt that one.” What? He felt pain?

This is the same team whose manager, on the same night, decided that Michael Fulmer should come back to pitch after the 45 minute rain delay. He wasn’t effective before the rain delay and you could argue he should have come out then. So for him to return after the delay made no sense, and frankly makes you wonder, once again. The Tigers flat-out, do not protect their players, and as a fan, you hope you’re not the only one who notices.

Gibson said Ausmus “smartly” removed Fulmer from the game after he started to get in trouble again. “Smartly” was the word he used. You judge the intelligence, I can’t anymore. The Tigers are now rolling the dice again with two emerging young players, Castellanos and Fulmer – someone please explain it.

14 thoughts on “ONE TOPIC – TWO TAKES

  1. Where was the urgency for the first 4 months of the season, when the season kept being treated like a “marathon”, instead of a baseball season where every single at bat matters, where every runner matters, and where every base matters?


  2. This is why I don’t smile anymore, but loudly laugh when I hear talks about Ausmus being MOY. Possible that so many fans can only say he’s done a good job keeping the team together playing for the playoffs with all the injuries? Are the Tigers the only team who suffer injuries?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As for Castellanos, he can’t hurt the injury, it was always a “pain threshold” injury. If he is to provide anything in the playoffs he had to come back when he did. If he does little it is a step up from what the replacement players provided at 3B.


  4. Here we go again at TT with this crazy false narrative that the Tigers training staff is ran by a bunch of buffoons when the reality is completely the opposite and are well known throughout mlb as the model franchise for this. In a year where a lot of fans felt like the tigers were snake bit (they weren’t), they also remain as the #1 LEAST injured team the last 5-10 years.


    • Hi, Scott – The local papers and even the Front Office acknowledge how many injuries the Tigers have and the past 4 years of not winning in October have officially been blamed on injuries. This is the Tigers saying this, not us. But as to the issue about injuries, we’ve actually done quite a bit of research on them for our blogs and have yet to find anything that shows the Tigers are one of the least injured (official DL AND playing injured) or awards/recognitions that they are a model franchise for handling them. We would really appreciate it if you could share your sources with us so we can incorporate them into future blogs. Thanks! – Holly

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Maybe the media gets the injury reports wrong. If Nick plays, Ausmus rushed him back. If he doesn’t, then Ausmus has no sense of urgency. How about Kudos to Miggy, Ian, and Iggy for getting big hits in a downpour? I used to love this blog but its getting to the point that its humorous to open it each day to find out what you will bash Ausmus about next.


    • Hi, Tim – I won’t speak for Kurt but my job is to raise questions about current issues. Nowhere in my piece did I “bash” Ausmus. I raised questions about his motivation but I also did the same for Castellanos, Mr. I and Avila. Our purpose is not to report the news so please don’t expect us to summarize a game unless it is part of the bigger picture. If you read our mission statement, the purpose of this blog is to identify issues worthy of making readers think and continue the dialog. We appreciate your comments and the ability to clarify our blog’s purpose. Thanks! – Holly

      Liked by 1 person

      • Keep it up Holly. Let him go back to (the local newspapers) for watered down reports and message boards that only make us “LOL.”


    • Hey Tim, I have a hard time ignoring the elephant in the room when he keeps knocking over all the furniture. When Brad is no longer the story, that’s when you won’t hear about him from me. And thank you for continuing to open the site each day. We appreciate your readership. Hopefully better days are ahead. Thanks, Kurt

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks for both of your responses. I am not a supporter of Ausmus either, but realistically, we aren’t going to get Bochy, Maddon, Francona, or Girardi any time soon. I don’t know who else is out there. Find it interesting that when reading articles not from Detroit specific sources, all fans think their managers are incompetent – including Indians, Red Sox and Yankee fans.


  6. He wouldn’t put him in until he played a game..”It’s unfair to the player”..”It’s unfair to other players on this team”. Pitchers getting hammered left in, won’t alter lineup, using hobbled/not fully recovered players; rank those choices on the fair/unfair scale! He’s a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma. They deserve better.


  7. I enjoyed today’s blog, as I enjoy reading TT everyday. I like the “behind the scenes” feel (I didn’t know about Nick’s agent speaking out about his injury) that I don’t get from the media. Keep up the good work!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Assuming that this is accurate, which I have no reason to doubt, I am puzzled by the motivation of Nick’s agent. He’s got a cash cow for perhaps 10 more years in Nick. Why risk it for a few games? It seems to me the Tigers, who only have 2-3 years left of Nick before free agency, would be the party pressuring him to make a risky early return from injury.


Comments are closed.