Detroit Tigers announce 4 major roster moves ahead of second half -- 2 are well overdue

Derek Hill finally replaces Nomar Mazara on roster

Nomar Mazara #15 of the Detroit Tigers is safe at first base as Nate Lowe #30 of the Texas Rangers reacts after making an error during the sixth inning at Globe Life Field on July 5, 2021 in Arlington, Texas. (Ron Jenkins, 2021 Getty Images)

DETROIT – The Detroit Tigers announced four major roster moves to begin the second half of the season, including the long-awaited replacement of Nomar Mazara with Derek Hill.

Unfortunately for both sides, the Mazara experiment in Detroit simply didn’t work out. He’s batting .212 through 50 games with a .597 OPS (on base plus slugging percentage) and -0.3 WAR (wins above replacement).

Frustration has been growing among Tigers fans in recent weeks as Mazara continued to struggle yet remained on the roster in favor of Hill.

Hill might not provide much more offense than Mazara, but he’s an elite defensive outfielder and a weapon on the base paths. He’s shown flashes of power in the minor leagues, so at the very least, his tools make him valuable in a number of ways.

Derek Hill #54 of the Detroit Tigers scores against the Cleveland Indians at Comerica Park on September 19, 2020, in Detroit, Michigan. (2020 Getty Images)

The Tigers also sent Willi Castro down to Triple-A Toledo, which is tremendously disappointing but also justified. Castro was the team’s best hitter last season, exploding onto the scene with a .349 average, .932 OPS and 12 extra-base hits in 36 games.

This season, Castro is slashing just .214/.278/.341 (batting average/on-base percentage/slugging percentage) -- all well below league average.

It really looked like the Tigers might have found a piece for the future in Castro, but now, he’ll have to try to recapture that magic with the Mud Hens.

Replacing Castro on the roster is infielder Isaac Paredes, who was once the team’s top offensive prospect behind Riley Greene. Paredes is only 22 years old, but so far, MLB pitching has been too much for him to handle.

Isaac Paredes #19 of the Detroit Tigers bats during the Detroit Tigers Summer Workouts at Comerica Park on July 18, 2020 in Detroit, Michigan. (MLB Photos via Getty Images)

In 145 plate appearances across 2020 and 2021, Paredes has just 27 hits and 14 walks. He’s struck out 29 times and hit two home runs.

Throughout his time in the minors, Paredes has always been a player who can draw walks and get on base at an elite level. This season, he’s drawn 26 walks while striking out 29 times in 44 games with the Mud Hens. His .351 OBP and 13 extra-base hits are more on par with what the Tigers are hoping to see.

Recapping the roster moves:

  1. Nomar Mazara designated for assignment.
  2. Derek Hill recalled from Triple-A.
  3. Willi Castro optioned to Triple-A.
  4. Isaac Paredes recalled from Triple-A.

The Tigers also called up left-handed pitcher Miguel Del Pozo to be the 27th man for Friday’s doubleheader against the Minnesota Twins.

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.