Don Kelly Earns Shot In Tigers' ALDS Game 4 Starting Lineup

Tuesday evening, Jim Leyland is giving us a slightly different look:

Austin Jackson, CF
Ramon Santiago, 2B
Delmon Young, LF
Miguel Cabrera, 1B
Victor Martinez, DH
Don Kelly, RF
Jhonny Peralta, SS
Alex Avila, C
Wilson Betemit, 3B

In Games 2 and 3, Don Kelly was a mid-game substitute for Magglio Ordonez, pinch-running and then taking over in the field. In Game 4, he's getting the start, and though we don't know why, it might have something to do with the fact that Kelly bats left-handed, and that the opposing starter, A.J. Burnett, is right-handed. Burnett has never shown much of a platoon split in his career, but it's seldom a bad idea to try for the handedness advantage.

The other difference from yesterday's lineup is that Wilson Betemit is starting in place of Brandon Inge. Inge went 2-for-4 with a double on Monday, but Inge is a righty while Betemit switch-hits, so, again, it's the handedness advantage. Over his career, Betemit has posted a .684 OPS against lefties, but an .817 OPS against righties. That's presumably the explanation, here.

For the Tigers, this game's going to be all about making Burnett work hard. It'd be great if Rick Porcello could keep the Yankees quiet, but that's a tough task, so the Tigers will probably need to score a fair amount of runs. They can't bail Burnett out by swinging at curves in the dirt.

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