Meet the Tigers: Here's the 25-man Opening Day roster

DETROIT - Starting pitchers 

48 Matthew Boyd

Position: Left-handed pitcher.

Vitals: 26 years old, 6-foot-3, 215 pounds.

2016 stats: 6-5, 4.53 ERA, 1.295 WHIP, 82 strikeouts, 97.1 innings.

Buzz: Beat out Anibal Sanchez for the last rotation spot. Has continued with arm slot change suggested by pitching coach Rich Dubee late last season. Boyd continues to see an uptick in velocity.


32 Michael Fulmer

Position: Right-handed pitcher.

Vitals: 24, 5-3, 210

2016 stats: 11-7, 3.06 ERA, 1.119 WHIP, 132 strikeouts, 159 innings.

Buzz: Fulmer became the fifth player in team history to earn American League Rookie of the Year honors and also finished 10th in the Cy Young Award voting last season. His 132 strikeouts were most by a Tigers rookie since Les Cain struck out 156 in 1970.

44 Daniel Norris

Position: Left-handed pitcher.

Vitals: 23, 6-2, 195.

2016 stats: 4-2, 3.38 ERA, 1.399 WHIP, 71 strikeouts, 69.1 innings.

Buzz: Dealt with lower back strain and a right oblique strain last season. Solid September – 2-0 with a 2.73 ERA and 38 strikeouts in 29.2 innings – suggests he’s ready to make big impact this season.

35 Justin Verlander

Position: Right-handed pitcher.

Vitals: 34, 6-5, 225.

2016 stats: 16-9, 3.04 ERA, league-leading 1.001 WHIP and 254 strikeouts, 227.2 innings, 10.0 strikeouts per nine innings.

Buzz: Staff ace. Should have won the Cy Young last season, but finished second to ex-Tiger Rick Porcello after controversial voting.

27 Jordan Zimmermann

Position: Right-handed pitcher.

Vitals: 30, 6-2, 225.

2016 stats: 9-7, 4.87 ERA, 1.367 WHIP, 66 strikeouts in 105.1 innings.

Buzz: Had an injury-plagued first season with the Tigers. Pain free entering second year of a five-year, $110 million deal. If he stays healthy this season, Tigers will have a good chance to contend for division.


Bullpen

61 Shane Greene

Position: Right-handed pitcher.

Vitals: 28, 6-4, 210.

2016 stats: 5-4, 5.82 ERA, 1.326 WHIP, 59 strikeouts, 60.1 innings.

Buzz: Blister knocked him out for a month last season, then was used as a reliever. Has adjusted to a new normal after having thoracic outlet surgery in 2015. His fingers on his right hand sometimes go cold or numb.

57 Francisco Rodriguez

Position: Right-handed closer.

Vitals: 35, 6-0, 195.

2016 stats: 44 saves, 3.24 ERA, 1.131 WHIP, 52 strikeouts, 58.1 innings.

Buzz: Needs 20 saves to become the fifth player in major league history to reach 450. The others are Mariano Rivera (652), Trevor Hoffman (601) and Lee Smith (478).

43 Bruce Rondon

Position: Right-handed reliever.

Vitals: 26, 6-3, 275.

2016 stats: 5-2, 2.97 ERA, 0.963 WHIP, 45 strikeouts, 36.1 innings.

Buzz: One of the team’s most effective relievers last season, after being sent home in 2015 for an effort issue. Lower velocity this spring has been alarming.

56 Kyle Ryan

Position: Left-handed reliever.

Vitals: 25, 6-5, 215.

2016 stats: 4-2, 3.07 ERA, 1.132 WHIP, 35 strikeouts, 55.2 innings.

Buzz: Beat out Blaine Hardy to be the second southpaw in the bullpen after Justin Wilson. Had a 1.95 ERA and a 0.892 WHIP in 31 games at home last season and a 5.30 ERA and a 1.607 WHIP in 25 games on the road.

19 Anibal Sanchez

Vitals: Right-handed reliever.

2016 stats: Career-high 30 home runs allowed. 7-13, 5.87 ERA, 1.461 WHIP, 135 strikeouts, 153.1 innings.

Buzz: Lost out to Boyd to be the No. 5 starter. To his credit, he bought into an arm slot adjustment and had three consecutive solid outings to end spring. Will serve long-relief role and could end up in the rotation again.

30 Alex Wilson

Position: Right-handed reliever.

Vitals: 30, 6-0, 215.

2016 stats: 4-0, 2.96 ERA, 1.219 WHIP, 49 strikeouts, 73 innings.

Buzz: 4-0 with a 2.29 ERA and a 1.075 WHIP in the second half of the season. Has been one of the team’s best relievers over the past two seasons.


38 Justin Wilson

Position: Left-handed reliever.

Vitals: 29, 6-2, 205.

2016 stats: 4-5, 4.14 ERA, 1.330 WHIP, 65 strikeouts, 58.2 innings.

Buzz: Dealt with some elbow soreness in the second half of the season, when he posted a 4.97 ERA and a 1.618 WHIP over 29 games.

Catchers

31 Alex Avila

Position: Backup catcher

Vitals: 30, 5-11, 210.

2016 stats: .213 batting average, .359 on-base percentage, six doubles, seven home runs in 57 games for the White Sox.

Buzz: Left-handed bat. Went on the disabled list twice last season due to right hamstring injury. Back for second stint with team after playing for Tigers from 2009-15.


34 James McCann

Position: Starting catcher

Vitals: 26, 6-2, 210.

2016 stats: .221 avg., .272 OBP, 12 HR, 48 RBIs, 105 games.

Buzz: Had caught-stealing percentage of 45%, best by a Tiger since Ivan Rodriguez's 51% in 2006. Hit .258 (31-for-120) vs. lefties last season, .201 (45-for-224) against righties.

Infielders

24 Miguel Cabrera

Position: Starting first baseman.

Vitals: 33, 6-4, 240.

2016 stats: .316 avg., .956 OPS, 31 2B, 38 HR, 108 RBIs, 158 games.

Buzz: All-Star and Silver Slugger last season. Enters season with 446 career home runs and 2,519 hits.

9 Nick Castellanos

Position: Starting third baseman.

Vitals: 25, 6-4, 210.

2016 stats: .285 avg., 25 2B, 18 HR, 58 RBIs, 110 games.

Buzz: Ranked fourth in the American League with a .351  batting average (40-for-114) against lefties last season. Hit .230 (100-for-435) against righties.

1 Jose Iglesias

Position: Starting shortstop.

Vitals: 27, 5-11, 185.

2016 stats: .255 avg., 26 2B, 57 runs, 137 games.

Buzz: Gold Glove finalist. Hit .255 against righties, .254 against lefties. Led AL with 10.26 plate appearances per strikeout.

3 Ian Kinsler

Position: Starting second baseman.

Vitals: 34, 6-0, 200.

2016 stats: .288 avg., 178 hits, 29 2B, 28 HR, 83 RBIs, 153 games.

Buzz: Helped Team USA win World Baseball Classic this spring. Won AL Gold Glove at second base. Hit eight leadoff home runs last season, a club single-season record. Hit .309 (95-for-307) at Comerica Park last season.

49 Dixon Machado

Position: Backup infielder.

Vitals: 25, 6-1, 169.

2016 stats: .100 avg. in eight games with Tigers; .266 with 59 runs scored in 131 games at Triple-A Toledo.

Buzz: Made the club because he’s out of options and the Tigers didn’t want to risk losing him.

17 Andrew Romine

Position: Utility infielder/outfielder.

Vitals: 31, 6-1, 200.

2016 stats: .236 avg., 16 RBIs, 21 runs, 108 games.

Buzz: Switch hitter. Played eight positions during the season, including first games in center field and right field and second appearance as a pitcher. Only position he hasn’t played is catcher.

Mar 2, 2017; Lakeland, FL, USA; Tigers designated hitter
Detroit Tigers designated hitter Victor Martinez (Photo: Reinhold Matay, USA TODAY Sports)
Outfielders

18 Tyler Collins

Position: Fourth outfielder.

Vitals: 26, 5-11, 215.

2016 stats: .235 avg., four HR, 15 RBIs, 56 games; hit .214 in 68 games with Triple-A Toledo.

Buzz: Left-handed bat. Was expected to platoon with Mikie Mahtook in center but could get some time in right with J.D. Martinez on the disabled list with sprained right foot.

40 JaCoby Jones

Position: Centerfielder/third base.

Vitals: 24, 6-2, 205.

2016 stats: .214 avg., two RBIs, three runs, 13 games. Hit .312 in 20 games last season at Double-A Erie and .243 in 79 games at Triple-A Toledo.

Buzz: The front office spent off-season saying Jones needed more seasoning at Triple-A. The injury to J.D. Martinez and lack of anyone else making a strong case to play center has opened door for Jones to start season with the Tigers.


15 Mikie Mahtook

Position: Outfielder.

Vitals: 27, 6-1, 200.

2016 stats: .195 avg., 16 runs; batted.305 with 16 runs scored in 27 games at Triple-A Toledo.

Buzz: Should see time in right with J.D. Martinez out for month. Will also spell Jones in center.

28 J.D. Martinez-x

Position: Starting rightfielder (will miss first month with sprained right foot).

Vitals: 29, 6-3, 221.

2016 stats: .307 avg., 35 2B, 22 HR, 68 RBIs, 120 games.

Buzz: Was out of lineup with non-displaced fracture of the radial neck at the right elbow from June 17-Aug. 3 last season.  Will begin season on disabled list with a sprained right foot. Led AL with a .362 home batting average (81-for-224). A free agent next season, it would behoove the Tigers to trade him for prospects.

8 Justin Upton

Position: Starting leftfielder.

Vitals: 29, 6-2, 205.

2016 stats: .246 avg., 28 2B, 31 HR, 87 RBIs, 153 games.

Buzz: His second-half numbers suggest he’ll have a big season. After hitting nine home runs in the first half, he hit .260 with 22 home runs and 49 RBIs in the second half.

Designated hitter

41 Victor Martinez

Position: Designated Hitter.

Vitals: 38, 6-2, 210.

2016 stats: .289 avg., 22 2B, 27 HR, 86 RBIs, 154 games.

Buzz: Switch hitter. Hit .257 (55-for-220) at home, .322 (88-for-273) on the road. Fifth Venezuelan-born player to have at least 1,000 RBIs in the majors. Hit .305 with 17 home runs and 52 RBIs before the All-Star break, .269 with 10 home runs and 34 RBIs after the break.

x-beginning season on disabled list.

© Gannett Co., Inc. 2017. All Rights Reserved


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