With a 5-1 loss to Toronto on Saturday, Detroit has now lost back-to-back series and, pending the result of tonight's White Sox game, could be 2 12 games out of first place when they wake up Sunday.
After completing a sweep of the White Sox last Sunday, Detroit held a 1 12-game lead in the AL Central. They executed a major trade Monday, acquiring starter Anibal Sanchez and second baseman Omar Infante from Miami for a package of prospects that included blue-chip pitcher Jacob Turner.
Things can change quickly in a close playoff race. It's only July 28, and there are over two months left in the regular season -- plenty of time for more of these weekly shifts. But Detroit probably won't run away with the division, as many doom-and-gloomers seemed to expect only a few days ago.
Sanchez, making his first career start in the American League, allowed three home runs to Toronto's powerful offense. It wasn't the kind of debut he or the Tigers were looking for, especially after Friday's 8-3 defeat at the hands of the Blue Jays. Infante went 0-3 and only has two hits in 17 at-bats since re-joining Detroit.
One start and a handful of at-bats are hardly indicative of how things will go for Sanchez and Infante with their new team. Chances are, the deal will turn out to be good for Detroit, at least in 2012 (they may regret trading Turner down the road).
But after looking nearly infallible for most of the month of July, Detroit's momentum has come to a screeching halt in the last few days. This latest stretch doesn't mean the White Sox will cruise to a division title, just as Detroit's hot streak in July never meant they would do the same.
Detroit is a good team. But good enough to top the White Sox for the AL Central title? We'll see.
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Brett Lawrie isn't sore, he's just not yet correctly aligned.
Until that happens, the White Sox second baseman doesn't want to risk playing at full speed, which for him is nearly the equivalent of hyperdrive on the Millennium Falcon.
Lawrie said Sunday he has been pleased with the progress made in returning from a series of leg injuries that wiped out the final 2 1/2 months of last season. But he also isn't quite ready and doesn't want to risk re-injuring himself until he feels total confidence.
"I've been very happy and I haven't really gone backwards and that's been key for me," Lawrie said. "I guess the biggest thing is being able to trust myself when I get out on the field and not have to worry about my body and just worry about the game. If I can't do that then I'm not going to go out there and do that. S once I can clear that stuff up, and it's in the near future.
"I just need to keep being positive and keep putting the work in every single day and I'll be OK."
Lawrie and Rick Renteria said the veteran has been his normal hyper since he reported to camp eight days ago. He'd been a full participant leading up to Saturday when he told Renteria he still didn't feel completely right. But Lawrie said he's just working out the "end kinks" to a trying period. Even though he's had a few tough days of late, Lawrie is trying to stay upbeat and power through.
"It's nothing that's grabbing at me or anything like that," Lawrie said. "I think it's just how everything is sitting and needs to be aligned, that's all.
"Not completely where I want to be and I want to be right where I want to be in order to get out on the field. This last part has just been tough but I'm just continuing to push through and I want to be out on the field and be 100 percent and just have to worry about baseball and not have to worry about this. Before I get out there I just want to make sure that everything is cleared up."
GLENDALE, Ariz. — The White Sox held Brett Lawrie out Saturday after he reported discomfort in the same left leg that sidelined him for the final 2 1/2 months of 2016.
The second baseman has been a full participant the entire spring until he informed manager Rick Renteria what he was experiencing Saturday.
"We're going to reevaluate him tomorrow and see where he's at," Renteria said. "He didn't feel quite right, and so he was in there earlier today getting treatment. We'll reevaluate tomorrow and make a determination where we're at in terms of trying to set some parameters for how we move forward."
A confusing, tricky series of injuries that Lawrie blamed on wearing orthotics limited him to 94 games last season. He hit the disabled list on July 22 and didn't discover the cause until after the season ended. But Lawrie reported to camp feeling healthy once again and has participated at 100 percent until this point, Renteria said.
"It's been good," Renteria said. "Everything has been clean. There have been no notifications anything had been amiss. He just woke up this morning and felt it. So we're going to be very cautious, take it a day at a time, reevaluate it and see where we're at."