To all those who gripe and complain about how Tram apparently sits Pudge too much take a look at this stat from the latest edition of Tigers notes:
"Rodriguez caught 35 of Detroit's first 41 games. Only Oakland's Jason Kendall has started more games among American League catchers."
He's a catcher. It is physically impossible for a catcher to play everyday. It's a tough thing to do to keep Pudge out of the lineup, but you have to keep him fresh enough to endure 162 games.
The answer is in the DH slot. The roadblock to that is we have too many people who need to spend time at DH (Pudge, Guillen, Young, and Maggs when he returns). In an ideal situation in a critical series we catch Pudge in game 1, DH him in game 2 and catch him in game 3. This covers the dreaded Night/Day back to back games on Sat/Sun as Monday is usually an off day - and when it isn't he still has a full day to recover since Sunday is usually the day game.
Unitl we get Guillen's health situation straight, until we either play Young everyday at 1B or trade him to free up the DH slot we will have to sit at least one of these three on a regular rotation. That makes it hard to get lineup chemistry.
Any trades we make must take the DH slot into consideration and we should look to using it as a rotation and not a full-time slot for one player in the future.
While I like D.Y. his almost full-time need to DH is actually hurting this club right now. While I like White, his less than stellar defense sometimes invites using him as a DH hurts this club as well. We need to use the DH to help rest Pudge and any remaining injured players as a priority and our personnel at the moment precludes us from doing this to keep the most firepower in the lineup on a regular basis.
"I really think that the tigers need a better bench"
I couldn't agree with you more. Smith, Martinez, Wilson, Higgy and Thames don't exactly fill me with confidence.