Tag: Brad Ausmus

Brad Ausmus’ Contract Option Picked Up by Tigers: Latest Comments, Reaction

Despite missing the playoffs for the second consecutive season, the Detroit Tigers exercised manager Brad Ausmus‘ fourth-year option for 2017. 

The Tigers announced the news Wednesday. 

“Brad was instrumental in leading the team through adversity and with the development of our younger players, particularly the young starting pitchers,” executive vice president and general manager Al Avila wrote in a press release. “The team improved from last season, and under the leadership of Brad and his coaching staff, the ballclub kept fighting and remained in contention for the postseason. Moving forward we want to build off that progress.”

Chris McCosky of the Detroit News was the first to report the move Tuesday night.

The Tigers went 86-75, missing the playoffs by 2.5 games. Consecutive losses to the 68-93 Atlanta Braves to close out the season ended their chances of securing one of the two wild-card spots in the American League.

Detroit is 250-234 during Ausmus’ three years at the helm, including a playoff appearance in 2014 that resulted in the team getting swept by the Baltimore Orioles in the American League Division Series.

The Tigers had made three straight trips to the postseason prior to Ausmus’ arrival, including a World Series loss under Jim Leyland in 2012.

When asked about his desire to remain as manager following the conclusion of the 2016 regular season, Ausmus said the following, per Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press: “Yeah. It’s a team that’s got a chance to win that’s got some good young pitching now. You know, it’s got a bona fide ace at the top, and it’s got some good young pitching that will, theoretically, just grow and get better.”

With a starting rotation featuring the likes of Justin Verlander, Michael Fulmer, Jordan Zimmermann and Daniel Norris and a lineup with hitters such as Miguel Cabrera, Justin Upton, Ian Kinsler and J.D. Martinez, the Tigers have the talent to make a deep run next season.

They have faltered despite their talent over the past couple of years, and while Ausmus has yet to pay the price for that, his leash isn’t likely to be long in 2017, especially since he’ll be managing for a new contract.


Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Brad Ausmus Will Return as Tigers Manager in 2016: Latest Comments and Reaction

Despite rumblings the Detroit Tigers were considering a managerial change for 2016, Brad Ausmus will be back for a third season with the team next year. 

Per the Tigers’ official Twitter account, general manager Al Avila announced Ausmus will be retained.

Ausmus’ time leading the Tigers appeared like it was nearing a conclusion. George Sipple of the Detroit Free Press reported that the team’s former general manager, Dave Dombrowski, had to convince ownership not to make a managerial change during the season. 

Instead, via the Tigers’ Twitter account, Avila’s official statement said he and Ausmus have been able to better synchronize things:

Upon learning that he would be staying, Ausmus had this to say, per ESPN.com’s Katie Strang:

A change would have felt like the Tigers scapegoating their manager for poor roster construction, as B/R’s Scott Miller noted:

Things bottomed out in Detroit this season. Losing Max Scherzer in free agency was the first straw, but more alarming was Victor Martinez’s precipitous drop in production. After finishing second in AL MVP voting last year, the 36-year-old has a .664 OPS in 117 games entering play Saturday.

The Tigers front office traded David Price and Yoenis Cespedes at the deadline in July to gain future assets when it became apparent that contention in 2015 wasn’t going to happen. 

The starting pitching, which used to be the Tigers’ greatest strength, ranks 26th in OPS against (.775) and 27th in ERA (4.78). 

The Tigers are stuck in limbo with an old, expensive roster that will account for nearly $112 million in payroll next season before adding in arbitration-eligible players and potential free-agent signings. 

Ausmus inherited a solid situation two years ago, and he led the Tigers to the playoffs before they were swept by the Baltimore Orioles. Injuries, roster turnover and players hitting a natural decline point have contributed to Detroit’s disappointing 2015 season. 

The 46-year-old has earned a chance to prove himself as the Tigers enter the next phase of their rebuilding effort. It may not be a full-blown plan, because ownership has been willing to spend a lot of money and there are still valuable pieces to build around, such as Miguel Cabrera, Ian Kinsler and Jose Iglesias.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Brad Ausmus Rumors: Latest Buzz, Speculation on Manager’s Future with Tigers

The Detroit Tigers underwent an organizational shake-up earlier this year by ousting former president and general manager Dave Dombrowski, and it appears that more changes could be on the horizon with manager Brad Ausmus on the hot seat.

Continue for updates.

Avila Comments on Reports Ausmus Not Expected Back in 2016

Friday, September 11

Tigers general manager Al Avila released a statement regarding Ausmus’ status with the team: 

Avila admitted the team was in an “awkward” situation, but said “you deal with it and move on,” according to ESPN.com.

Ausmus Reportedly Set to Be Fired

Friday, Sept. 11 

Citing a front office source, WDIV-TV Local 4 News’ Bernie Smilovitz (via ClickonDetroit.com) reported Ausmus will be fired at the end of the 2015 season.

The source said new general manager Al Avila wants to bring in his own manager for a fresh start,” ClickOnDetroit.com noted. “Owner Mike Ilitch reportedly wants to bring a championship to Detroit but doesn’t feel Ausmus is the guy to do it. Ilitch is reportedly unhappy about miscommunication with the players and strategic mistakes on the field.”

“I haven’t been told anything,” said Ausmus, per the Detroit News Chris McCosky.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports noted the team could target former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire or former Cubs manager Rick Renteria. 

A year after Ausmus led the Tigers to 90 wins and an American League Central Division title, Detroit has floundered in the division’s cellar. Following Thursday night’s loss to the Cleveland Indians, the Tigers are 64-76good for the second-worst record in the AL. 

But despite the hiccup, Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller believes Ausmus could thrive with a new franchise: 

Still in only his second year as a manager, the 46-year-old Ausmus has plenty of room to grow as a leader on the bench.

After he led Detroit to a successful 2014 campaign that resulted in a playoff berth, teams in need of a rising star would be wise to target the former All-Star catcher if he hits the open market.    

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Like Last Year, Justin Verlander Turning It on When Tigers Need It Most

Justin Verlander has struggled this year.  Actually, that’s a bit generous. 

Sugarcoating aside, he has been terrible.  His current 4.54 ERA is the second-highest of his career, and his strikeout total is at its lowest since 2006, his first full season in the big leagues.  His 1.40 WHIP is tied for the highest in his career, and he just hasn’t been the dominant ace he once was.

However, maybe that ace is starting to come back as the games become more important.  He pitched a gem two starts ago against the Royals, the Tigers’ biggest AL Central competitors, and outdueled White Sox ace Chris Sale on Wednesday.

In that start against Chicago, he was masterful.  He allowed seven hits, struck out six and did not walk a batter while pitching eight innings for only the second time all season.

Verlander’s recent performance is almost a carbon copy of last year’s.  He was not quite as bad in 2013 as he has been so far this year, but it seems that he is once again flipping a switch as October nears.

In last year’s postseason, Verlander took the team on his back, leading the Tigers past the Athletics with two stellar outings in the ALDS.  He started Games 2 and 5, and his two fantastic outings in those games brought back memories from his Cy Young-winning 2012 season. 

In Game 2, he struck out 11 in seven scoreless innings of work, but the Tigers couldn’t muster any offense and lost 1-0.  Then, with the season on the line in a winner-take-all Game 5, Verlander prolonged the season with 10 more strikeouts in eight scoreless innings, catapulting Detroit into the next round.

He turned in a similar effort in Game 3 of the ALCS, but the one run he gave up in eight innings was enough to get him the loss as the Tigers once again came out on the short side of a 1-0 game.

2014 has been eerily similar.  He started the season strong but ran into a wall in the second month of the season.  He pitched poorly in May, June and July, amassing ERAs of 5.54, 6.82 and 4.78, respectively.

He started pitching better in August, but then a debacle against the Pirates saw him pitch only one inning, give up five runs and then injure himself running to first after a sacrifice bunt.  That fluke injury forced him to miss some time, and it seemed like he and his team had both hit rock bottom.

Even after acquiring David Price from the Rays in a stunning trade minutes before the trade deadline, the Tigers were out of first place and in danger of missing the playoffs altogether.  The bullpen was so bad that some speculated about the Tigers inserting Verlander into the closer’s role for the postseason.

The Tigers decided to stick with Verlander in the rotation, and he has made good on that trust.  The Tigers are 6-1 in Verlander’s seven starts since returning to the rotation, and he has gotten the victory in five of those.

Detroit’s magic number is now three, meaning if a combination of Tigers wins and Royals losses reaches three, the Tigers clinch the division and avoid the treacherous one-off Wild Card Game.

If Verlander is right, which I think he is now, the Tigers are going to be scary over the course of a five- or seven-game playoff series.

An overpowering pitching rotation of Max Scherzer, David Price, Verlander and Rick Porcello will be very tough for any opponent, and the offense is pretty good as well.

Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez are two of the best hitters in the entire MLB, and the additions of Ian Kinsler and Rajai Davis give the lineup a dynamic it didn’t have last year.  For example, when Davis stole his 35th base of the season in Wednesday’s win against the White Sox, it matched the number of steals the Tigers stole as a team in 2013.

In last year’s playoff run that ended in the ALCS against the Red Sox, the offense did not have anything even resembling a running threat, forcing the Tigers to play base-to-base baseball, basically waiting for an extra-base hit or a string of hits to score runs.

Now, though, they have Davis, who has over 300 stolen bases in his career.  He has been one of the league’s most prolific base stealers over the past six years; he has averaged 42 steals over those years.  You can guarantee that if the Tigers are locked in a close game, Brad Ausmus will have the confidence to give Davis the green light to get into scoring position.

Back to pitching, the bullpen has been disastrous for most of the season.  The Tigers signed Joe Nathan in the offseason, but his ERA has been around five all year.  They acquired Joakim Soria at the deadline for some late-inning help, and Anibal Sanchez has returned from the disabled list as a reliever as well.

However, Verlander might be the X-factor.  Which one will show up: the terrific Verlander or the one with a 4.50 ERA?

If last year is any indication, Verlander will turn it on and be an ace.  If he can pitch at the same level he did in last year’s postseason, the Tigers have to be dark-horse candidates to advance all the way to the World Series.

The American League is loaded with the likes of the Angels, Orioles, and A’s, but with Verlander at his best, the Tigers have three Cy Young-caliber pitchers to go along with one of the best offenses in the league. 

It’s going to come down to Verlander, and if he is up to the task, watch out for the Detroit Tigers.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Houston Astros: Power Ranking the Team’s Top 5 Catching Prospects

At first glance, identifying the five best catching prospects in the Houston Astros’ system is like deciding which Jersey Shore cast member to invite to your niece’s Christening. It’s a quandary, really*. Your options are pretty bad across the board.

Scouring the Houston system for promising catchers wasn’t easy; in fact, it was darn near impossible. Truth be told, I was tempted to just start and end this list with the words “Craig Biggio” and hope everyone reading was 45 or older. Fortunately, my better judgment won out; the last thing I need is all 12 Astro’s fans mad at me**. I’ve never messed with Texas, and believe me, I don’t plan on starting now.

But seriously, as Astros fans flock to the ‘net in need of baseball info, it’s our job at Bleacher Report to try our best to make the best of a bad situation, so I’ve compiled a list of the five most promising catching prospects in the Houston system.

Proceed with caution: you’re about to miss Brad Ausmus more than you ever thought you could.  

(Author’s note No. 1: Any Jersey Shore aficionado knows the clear answer to this question is Vinny. If a question is ever aimed at determining which of the Seaside gorillas is the most normal, acceptable, or redeemable, the answer is always Vinny.)

(Author’s note No. 2: Kidddingggggg…)

Begin Slideshow

Catcher Brad Ausmus of Los Angeles Dodgers a Successful Manager in Waiting

Most fans in Los Angeles knew Brad Ausmus was going to retire before he did.

The 41-year-old catcher has missed a large part of the 2010 season with back problems and appeared more comfortable providing quiet advice to teammates than squatting behind the plate for nine grueling innings on aging knees.

Ausmus will get the opportunity to take the reins for the Dodgers in one their few remaining games.

He has already experienced the game from the position of manager, having coached the Dodgers in their final regular season game in 2009, manager Joe Torre appointing him for the day.

If anyone reading this has been to a game in the last two years, they have noticed the leadership qualities instilled in the catching sage.

He has served as a mentor for Russell Martin, providing insight from years past. He has tweaked the fundamentals of young pitchers such as Chad Billingsley and Clayton Kershaw. Finally, Ausmus took young fireballer Kenley Jansen under his wing when Jansen was called up midseason.

In his 18-year career, Ausmus has played in just about every stadium in Major League Baseball, having played in the National League and American League. Brad will finish his respectable big league career just shy of 2,000 games played. To have played that many games as a catcher is like doubling the number of games played for a starting pitcher.

Not only do catchers participate in the game, they also have a vital part in the outcome of their team’s defense. For Ausmus, when he catches, he also calls the game for his pitcher. Catchers sometimes act as assistant coaches, calling the game for pitchers, shifting the defense in any given situation, directing traffic on relays from the outfield, and saving wild pitches from giving away bases.

Brad Ausmus will make a name for himself off the field the same way he did on it: with dignity, respect, and knowledge. Expect Ausmus to take several teams to success in years to come.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Dodgers Win 2011 World Series: A What If? Timeline

The Los Angeles Dodgers are fading fast, and are already eying the San Francisco Giants with a fleeting hope of making a remarkable comeback and a wild-card berth.

Realistically, the Dodgers are most likely turning their focus to 2011, and the uncertainty that lies on the horizon.

It is becoming more possible that the McCourts, Frank and Jamie, will be ordered to sell the team while they can’t settle marital differences. A new owner would likely provide some financial stability.

Several Dodgers will be free agents at the end of the 2010 season, including James Loney, Hiroki Kuroda, Manny Ramirez, and Vicente Padilla.

In addition to the potential loss of key players, the Dodgers will still be paying estranged outfielders Juan Pierre and Andruw Jones.

With all the turmoil of under-performing players along with injuries and soap-opera drama in the front office, there is a brighter outlook for devoted fans…

Begin Slideshow

Los Angeles Dodgers Injury Update 6/6/10

Just over a third of the way through the 2010 season, it is overly apparent: The Dodgers have been hit hard by injuries straight out of the gate.

However, hope is on the horizon. A perpetually depleted bullpen is starting to rebound from injuries to its main characters. Hong-Chih Kuo is beginning to find his form that enabled him to have success in his 2009 campaign.

Jeff Weaver, the Dodgers veteran righty out of the ‘pen has been heckled by numerous health issues all season. However, it appears as though his recent soreness will not force him to the disabled list.

George Sherrill is recovering nicely from a back strain that forced him to the 15-day disabled list on May 24. The set-up man made his first rehab start June 1, and reports were promising. Following more work on Saturday, in which Sherrill pitched a scoreless two-thirds of an inning for Triple-A Albuquerque, the lefty is on pace to return shortly.

Cory Wade is set to start his minor league rehabilitation in the upcoming week, and may make his season debut in the month of June.

Vicente Padilla is scheduled to return on June 18, just in time to start against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. His return will necessitate a decision for Joe Torre. The skipper will have to decide between two young arms.

Charlie Haeger is coming off the DL following a rehab to firm up the healing process on the turf toe that has hindered his delivery over the last month.

Haeger’s competition for the final spot in the starting rotation is fierce. Rookie John Ely has made a strong campaign to remain on the roster. His 2.54 ERA and .208 opponents’ BA would be difficult to dismiss, especially considering Haeger has struggled all season.

Ely has also shown he has the ability to go deep in to games, which had been Haeger’s number one attribute. A rubber arm will certainly be welcomed during a time of inconsistency healthwise on the Dodgers’ 25-man roster.

There is still no estimated time of return for Russell Martin’s veteran back-up, Brad Ausmus. The 41-year-old catcher is still on the 60-day disabled list following April surgery on a pinched nerve in his lower back. Although Ausmus is able to walk around and even play a little toss, his back still tightens up on occasion and there’s no reason to chance it given A.J. Ellis’ youth and versatility.

Finally, the Dodgers will decide the immediate future for starting third baseman Casey Blake. While fielding pre-game ground balls on Thursday, Blake felt pain in his lower back, and was immediately removed from the line-up. He will be evaluated on Sunday, after an MRI showed perplexing and inconclusive results.

If Blake lands on the DL, expect veterans Jamey Carroll and Ronnie Belliard to pick up the slack, and see increased playing time. Blake DeWitt will have to find an offensive groove; he will be called upon to be the every day second baseman in Blake’s absence.

For further updates, fans can catch the Dodgers versus the Braves, with a marquee pitching match-up (John Ely 3-2, 2.54 ERA vs. Tim Hudson 6-1, 2.30 ERA) set for 1:10 PT at Dodger Stadium.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Pre-Game Warm-Ups Hurting The Los Angeles Dodgers…Literally

Maybe the starting line-up should just take a nap before games.

On Wednesday night, pre-game warm-ups claimed another Dodger victim, just minutes before the first pitch against the San Diego Padres.

Manny Ramirez was warming up his aging legs, performing an exercise he does every day before the game begins. The left fielder was swinging his legs in the recreational room, attempting to stretch out his hamstring, when he got too close to a table and struck it with his foot.

Already down their star right fielder, due to another freak pre-game mishap, the Dodgers took no chances and removed Manny from the starting line-up. With two outfielders out and a reliever on the mound to start the game, the Blue Crew finally relinquished their nine-game winning streak to the Padres, losing 10-5.

Manny’s injury didn’t appear to be serious, as he pinch-hit later in the game. However, the incident comes less than a week after right fielder Andre Ethier broke the pinky finger on his right hand during pre-game batting practice. Ethier is on the 15-day disabled list, and is sporting a splint on the injured finger.

The Dodgers can ill-afford another injury, already missing several starters due to injury. There has been no updates regarding Rafael Furcal’s return from the disabled list with a sore hamstring. He was eligible to return from the 15-day DL last weekend against the Padres, but team doctors and manager Joe Torre felt he was not ready after complaints from Furcal of continued discomfort.

Starting pitchers Vicente Padilla and Charlie Haeger are still out. Padilla has elbow soreness and isn’t due back until early June. Haeger suffers from Plantar fasciitis in his right foot and finished up rehab last week. Plantar fasciitis is a condition in the arch of the foot that causes sudden and immense pain, making it difficult to walk or even stand. Haeger should return soon, but will need to find a groove as he is still struggling.

Cory Wade has yet to see game action this season, and his return is expected some time in June.

Finally, Brad Ausmus is on the 60-day disabled list with a pinched nerve in his lower back. The veteran catcher had surgery on April 28th, but there is no time table for his return. He appeared to be moving slowly and gingerly, walking around the Dodgers’ dugout during pre-game in San Diego.

The current Dodgers success is a welcomed sign for concerned fans, but starting games with more than half of the line-up comprised of reserves will eventually take its toll on the win-loss column. There could be new faces in the clubhouse as the All-Star break nears.


Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Copyright © 1996-2010 Kuzul. All rights reserved.
iDream theme by Templates Next | Powered by WordPress