Former All-Star closer Trevor Rosenthal promoted to Detroit Tigers' pitching staff despite lousy minor league numbers


DETROIT (CCN) — In a move that some suggest is making room for the Detroit Tigers to trade All-Star closer Shane Greene before Major League Baseball's July 31 trading deadline, a former All-Star closer was promoted to the line-up on Monday afternoon. The Tigers called up Trevor Rosenthal despite his rather lousy numbers so far in Triple-A action with the Toledo Mud Hens.

The Tigers signed Rosenthal to a minor league deal after his June 23 release from the Washington Nationals' organization. They have high hopes for the once feared right-handed fireballer with reports that his velocity is near its old form with clockings above 98 mph in his most recent action at Toledo.

Rosenthal once reached triple digits with a fastball that helped him become one of baseball's best closers in 2014 and 2015 when putting up 93 saves for the St. Louis Cardinals. He shared closer duties in 2016 and 2017  with Seunghwan Oh before needing Tommy John surgery in August of 2017. The Cardinals released Rosenthal during the off-season and he missed all of the 2018 campaign.

He signed as a free agent with the Nationals in 2019 but allowed 16 earned runs in only 6 1/3 innings of work and was sent to their Double-A affiliate at Harrisburg. He didn't do much better there with a 5.79 earned run average in 10 games. The Tigers signed Rosenthal to a minor league deal six days after the Nationals let him go and he has so far worked only 5 1/3 innings at Toledo. His ERA there was a whopping 10.13 in 6 outings.


Jay Smith tabbed by Juwan Howard to return to UM basketball coaching staff


ANN ARBOR (CCN) — Jay Smith is returning to the college basketball coaching staff at the University of Michigan.

New Coach Juwan Howard made the announcement Monday that he has hire Smith to be UM's director of player personnel and development. Smith spent seven seasons with the Wolverines as an assistant coach on Steve Fisher's staff, including 1991 when helping to recruit UM's Fab Five class that included Howard,  Chris Webber, Jalen Rose, Jimmy King and Ray Jackson. All but Jackson made it to the NBA and Smith also helped recruit and coach college All-Americans Rumeal Robinson, Loy Vaught and Terry Mills at UM.

"There are many people who have helped me throughout my career; however, Jay Smith is someone special who I have a deep connection with and the utmost respect for," Howard said in a statement. "He has such an incredible passion for the game and his ability to relate with young men is going to be something invaluable for us. We are very fortunate to have him return to Ann Arbor and join our staff."

After leaving UM's staff in 1996, Smith became head coach at Grand Valley State for one season and then moved on to Mount Pleasant where he led the Chippewas from the 1998-99 campaign until the 2005-06 season.  After a 23-6 campaign at Division II Grand Valley State, Smith's college coaching record at CMU was a lowly 95-160. He spent eight years as an assistant at the University of Detroit Mercy after being fired at CMU.  Smith had a 22-52 record as head coach for the past three years at Kalamazoo College in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association.

Gordon Beckham's homer highlights 7-run 3rd inning as Detroit Tigers win wild 12-8 affair in Kansas City over Royals


KANSAS CITY (CCN) — Gordon Beckham's home run highlighted a seven-run third inning as the Detroit Tigers beat the Kansas City Royals in a wild 12-8 affair Sunday in Kansas City. The blast left Beckham with  more home runs and RBIs at Kauffman Stadium than at any ballpark he hasn’t called home during his big league career. The 11-year veteran has only 78 total and Sunday's homer was his fourth one of 2019.