Tigers find fix to Renteria's woes

Tigers find fix to Renteria's woes

DETROIT -- The Tigers believe they discovered a cure to Edgar Renteria's cold spell at the plate.

"We've been watching the tapes and stuff, and hopefully we see something that's going to [work]," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. "He's been struggling, and hopefully we've got something that will straighten that out. We don't know for sure, but we think so."

Leyland said hitting coach Lloyd McClendon made a mechanical tweak to the five-time All-Star.

The Tigers' skipper would not reveal details.

"He just needed to change his mechanics," Leyland said.

McClendon echoed Leyland, but he suggested that part of the problem could also reside in Renteria's head.

"Obviously, from a mental standpoint, it grinds on you when you're not getting the positive results," McClendon said. "And Edgar's a guy who really cares and tries so hard.

"You go into a little funk like that and you start listening to a lot of different questions. You lose a little bit of your swagger, a little bit of your confidence. I firmly believe when guys are in a funk, the worst thing they can do is have a lot of different voices in their ears telling them what to do. You need to focus on one individual. He needs to focus and concentrate on the things we're trying to do and keep the big picture in mind. I think Edgar's going to be fine."

Renteria snapped a hitless streak of 23 at-bats -- one shy of his career-high -- in the seventh inning of Tuesday's win over the Indians. During that span, his batting average dropped from .275 to .254.

Considered a quality RBI man, Renteria last drove in a run June 16.

"Some days you feel like you hit the ball good, then you hit a ball bad and it goes through for a base hit," Renteria said at Seattle last weekend. "Right now, I feel like everything I hit, somebody's got it. They make every play."

A six-game homestand could help Renteria get back on track. He is hitting .306 at home this season, compared to .208 on the road.

"Hopefully, [his seventh inning single] was the start of something good," Leyland said. "We need to get him going."

Pitching matchup
DET: RHP Eddie Bonine (2-1, 4.30 ERA)
Bonine was pushed back a day from his original rotation spot, which was slated to fall on Tuesday. That makes this his final scheduled outing before the All-Star break. Facing an Indians club that has struggled offensively this year could provide an opportunity for Bonine to get back into quality pitching, if he can attack the strike zone on the corners rather than the middle of the plate, which was his downfall his last time out at Minnesota.

CLE: RHP Paul Byrd (3-10, 5.53 ERA)
Byrd has had a very inconsistent season, but one constant has been his penchant for dishing out the home run ball. He might fare a little better in the pitching-friendly confines of Comerica Park. He had a strong outing there on June 6, when he held the Tigers to a pair of runs on four hits over seven innings for his 100th career victory, but he nonetheless gave up a pair of homers in that start.

Tidbits
Tuesday marked the fourth game the Tigers have hit four or more home runs in a game this season. ... Curtis Granderson is hitting .441 in his last 17 games, while Ivan Rodriguez is hitting .418 in his last 19 games. ... Leyland said that backup catcher Dane Sardinha will start on Wednesday, adding that Rodriguez looked tired after catching a 15-inning marathon game on Sunday afternoon. ... Leyland also said injured utilityman Brandon Inge could return from his Minor League rehab assignment before the All-Star break. ... Since the beginning of last season, the Tigers have a 46-21 record against left-handed pitchers.

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Up next
• Thursday: Tigers (Kenny Rogers, 6-6, 4.60) vs. Twins (Kevin Slowey, 6-6, 3.78), 1:05 p.m. ET
• Friday: Tigers (Armando Galarraga, 7-2, 3.27) vs. Twins (Glen Perkins, 5-2, 4.27), 7:05 p.m. ET
• Saturday: Tigers (Nate Robertson, 6-7, 5.19) vs. Twins (Scott Baker, 5-2, 3.32), 3:55 p.m. ET

Scott McNeish is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.