Leyland wants callups to be able to help club

Leyland wants callups to be able to help club

DETROIT -- The Tigers haven't made any decisions yet on September callups. The serious discussions won't come until the next week or two. Still, the question is bound to come up about the Tigers' top remaining prospects, Nick Castellanos and Bruce Rondon.

Manager Jim Leyland knows it, because it's coming up in interviews. He leaves the decisions to team president/general manager Dave Dombrowski and assistant Al Avila, but Leyland goes back to his rule of thumb on September callups: If they can't help the team, they shouldn't be here.

"I don't want to get my boss mad at me, but somebody asked [in an interview] if you just bring him up here to see what it's like in the big leagues," Leyland said. "No, I don't think you do that. That's just my opinion. I think you bring him up if you think he can help the club. And that's the way I feel about anybody. I don't want the clubhouse getting all cluttered up. I never have.

"Sometimes you look for specialists, like a speed guy or a defensive guy, but we're already talking about six outfielders that I can only play four. If we have somebody down in the Minor Leagues that's better than the six we've got, they should probably be here now. I don't think that's the case."

It's a slightly different scenario for a pitcher, who can eat innings in a blowout. Still, Leyland indicated, that difference isn't drastic.

There's a good chance, Leyland indicated, they'll bring up an extra catcher as a backup for situations such as last Sunday, when Gerald Laird's ejection left Alex Avila as the only catcher available. Bryan Holaday, who spent a stretch in Detroit earlier this season when Avila and Laird were injured, would appear to be the likely candidate for that. Danny Worth has at least a decent shot to return as an extra infielder.

After that, however, Leyland is leaving the decisions to the front office.

"Dave and Al do a very thorough job at that," Leyland said. "They've always been very good with me about that. They know my feelings on it. I don't like to bring 10, 12 guys up here because there's just too much going on and your concentration and preparation is for the game, trying to get involved in the playoffs and stuff. But I do think you use common sense."