The Detroit Tigers announced that Jhonny Peralta will start in left field Monday against Oakland Athletics right-handed starter Jarrod Parker. It may seem like a desperate move to ignite the offense, but the Tigers need all the help they can get.
After being shut out against the A’s in Game 2, the Tigers must try to find a little bit of offense from the left field position. They started Andy Dirks in Game 1, who went 0-for-3 with three runners left on base. They tried Don Kelly in left in Game 2, which went a little better. Kelly had two hits, but was unable to be a threat on the basepaths.
One thing Kelly brought that Peralta likely won’t was improved defense. With Miguel Cabrera‘s inability to cover his usual amount of territory around third base, Kelly actually caught a ball which normally would have been covered by Cabrera.
Peralta won’t improve the defense in left field, but he should help them out at the plate from the position. He has looked good at the plate in his short time since returning from a 50-game suspension. The Tigers have to continue to put pressure on the opposing pitcher at the bottom of the batting order.
While his defense may be a bit of a downgrade, the Tigers have watched Peralta have a career year at the plate all season. They shouldn’t worry about the outside implications of playing him. He has served his time, and they might as well use him while they have him under contract.
Peralta has gone 0-for-3 against Parker in his career, but has a .400 OBP.