The Tigers have the potential for a big year, but one of the keys is a healthy Carlos Guillen -- something they haven't had for a full season since 2007. Manager Jim Leyland said hopes for a full season this year could be dashed right off the top, as he's planning to start the season without his second baseman.
"I don't think he's going to be ready to start," Leyland said Wednesday, according to the Detroit News. "I mean the season -- but I don't want to put the cart before the horse, because I don't know for sure. We're hoping he's going to be part of the mix at second base, but he won't be until he's ready to play."
Guillen has had myriad injuries the past two seasons, in which he's been limited to 149 games, and the one at issue now is apparently a knee injury he suffered in an on-field collision in August. He had microfracture surgery in September.
Counting on a 35-year-old middle infielder with a history of injuries isn't an ideal situation, but the potential good news is that we could get a good look at Will Rhymes. The 27-year-old made a splash in a 54-game big-league debut last season, batting .304/.350/.414 after batting .305 at Triple-A.
-- David Andriesen