Fully healed from the blister injury that forced him to the 15-day disabled list, Detroit Tigers left-handed pitcher Drew Smyly is nearing a return to the mound and might even get the ball for Tuesday's game against Josh Hamilton and the Texas Rangers.
The Detroit News' Lynn Henning noted on Sunday that Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland has already decided on a starter internally, but has not publicly stated whether it will be Smyly or top prospect Jacob Turner who gets the ball on Tuesday:
Leyland knows but isn't saying who's starting Tuesday at Texas. Belief here was Turner (best chance to win). But sounds as if it's Smyly.— Lynn G. Henning (@Lynn_Henning) June 24, 2012
Considering how the Tigers are playing such a high-powered offense like the one Texas uses to run through unsuspecting pitching staffs seemingly at will, it's entirely conceivable that Leyland will try to keep his future stud Turner away from an ERA-killing match up like this. Smyly has been chomping at the bit to get back on the field for the big club for more than a week now, and his left-handed arm could be a vital asset against the Rangers' lineup.