Detroit Tigers: Jim Leyland Risking His Job by Playing Magglio Ordonez

Christopher Czar@@detsportsczarContributor IJune 21, 2011

DETROIT - APRIL 10:  Magglio Ordonez #30 of the Detroit Tigers greets manager  Jim Leyland #10 against the Texas Rangers during Opening Day on April 10, 2009 at Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit won the game 15-2. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Jim Leyland needs to win the division this year to keep his job.  Nothing new here.

It's been stated ad nauseum since the end of last season that anything less would mean no contract extension.

The poor starts by the Minnesota Twins and Chicago White Sox only further compound the need to win now.

Here's another stunning revelation—resigning Magglio Ordonez was a mistake.

Well not surprising, either, since Ordonez season has been slightly less successful than the job done by Lebron James' image coach.

In 116 at-bats this year, Ordonez has 5 RBIs and as many home runs as DL

His DL trip was a blessing in disguise for Tigers fans as it guaranteed that the ascending Brennan Boesch would be in the lineup virtually every night and it gave talented prospect Andy Dirks a chance to play on a semi-regular basis.

Both guys have done nothing to lose their spots in the lineup.

Thanks to a few weeks of good baseball and major struggles by the Cleveland Indians, the Tigers were able to briefly overtake first place in the AL Central.

But all good things must come to an end and Ordonez was reinserted into the lineup just in time to squash that pesky hot streak the Tigers were on.

The Tigers are 2-4 in games Ordonez has batted in since his return.  One of those two wins came at the hands of his in-game lineup replacement (Ramon Santiago) via a walkoff triple vs. the Rays on June 13th.

So the Tigers have one win in games that Ordonez has started and finished since his return from the DL—June 16th vs. the Indians.

Oh, and in case you're wondering, he went 0-3 in that game.

Leyland has messed with the Tigers good karma by remaining so loyal to Ordonez and now what he has left is a muddled up division with a scorching hot Minnesota Twins in the rearview mirror.

It's time to make a change back to how it was.  Sit Ordonez.  Play Boesch and Dirks.

Playing young guys over his veterans has never been Leyland's forte but he's quickly coming to the point where sticking with that philosophy would be career suicide.

We're about to see what's more important to Leyland.  His loyalty or his job.