Notes, thoughts, and items from one scribe's spring-training journal after two weeks at Tigertown: 1. One of the driest, deadliest barbs during last autumn's playoff series came from a press-box Yankees writer after Austin Jackson homered in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series at Comerica Park. The Yanks were about to be evicted in four games when Jackson launched a seventh-inning rocket that pushed the Tigers' lead to 7-1 as it simultaneously raised the ire of a town not particularly happy with its baseball team. "And by the way," the Yankees writer said, his sarcasm a match for all of the Bronx's bitterness, "nice trade." Jackson, of course, is a one-time Yankees prospect who ended up in Detroit as part of the Curtis Granderson trade in 2009. He turned 26 three weeks ago and you can see the maturity. There's more muscle. More confidence. He hit two long drives to the warning track in Saturday's game against the Blue Jays. Expect a heavier slugging percentage from him in 2013. You'll also see a more seasoned player the Yankees galaxy wishes was still wearing pinstripes. 2. Bruce Rondon will be calmer the next time he pitches. And calmer still his third time out. The Tigers' supposed bullpen closer made it through Saturday's baptism and did about as expected. He struck out two batters, walked one, got another batter on a soft pop-up, and gave up a double on a ball Adam Lind's pure strength and a strong wind carried to the fence despite Lind breaking his bat.
Austin Jackson continues to mature for Tigers
Detroit News | Feb 24