The odd man out
The Tigers announced today that Andy Dirks has been recalled from Triple-A Toledo and have subsequently designated Don Kelly for assignment. A lot of people had suspected that Ryan Raburn was going to be the player to move, but in the end, Kelly was the odd man out.
Neither Kelly nor Raburn have provided the Tigers with any real offensive production, although Kelly did provide a lot more value to the team, in terms of defensive abilities. On the year, Raburn has posted a line of .172/.225/.258, whereas Kelly was .175/.267/.243. Unfortunately, Kelly is a left-handed batter, which took away much of his value.
When the emergence of Quintin Berry, Andy Dirks returning from his rehab assignment, and a productive Brennan Boesch, the Tigers found themselves with three better outfielders who all hit left handed. Simply put, Kelly’s services were no longer necessary.
Even though Raburn has struggled mightily this year, he bats right handed and plays both second base and the outfield. Having that option on the bench provides more flexibility and options for manager Jim Leyland, and he’s always spoken about the importance of having players who can play more than one position.
It’ll be interesting to see where Kelly ends up landing, whether he gets claimed through waivers, or if he’ll end up back in Toledo. I’ve yet to hear anything bad about him, so I wish him the best in all of his future endeavors. Thanks for everything, especially for providing us with this memorable moment.