Leyland's lineup didn't include any real surprises, unless you consider Ramon Santiago's start at second base a shocker.
It shouldn't be. Ryan Raburn has been swinging a hot bat.
Against the lefty Jon Lester it was wise for Leyland to opt for Raburn instead of left-handed hitting options down the bench he could have slotted into the DH spot. Santiago is the best fielder the Tigers have, and with over 2,000 MLB plate appearances, he provides the best assurance for Leyland's Opening Day lineup.
The lineup looks very much as it did when Leyland announced it would two months ago when the Tigers signed Prince Fielder.
1. Austin Jackson, CF
2. Brennan Boesch, RF
3. Miguel Cabrera, 3B
4. Prince Fielder, 1B
5. Delmon Young, LF
6. Ryan Raburn, DH
7. Jhonny Peralta, SS
8. Alex Avila, C
9. Ramon Santiago, 2B
Justin Verlander, Starting Pitcher
The Tigers can start living up to expectation in earnest on Thursday afternoon, and for the hometown fans it could be the beginning of a historic season. They'll start their 162 game stretch victorious and jump start a chance at an early season streak. Here's five bold predictions for how they'll kick it off.