Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 5/27/12

A situation arose Sunday that is going to make it difficult for Detroit to send Quintin Berry back to the minors when Austin Jackson comes off the disabled list at week's end.

Jackson is eligible to return June 1, when Detroit returns home to host the New York Yankees in a weekend set. Detroit won't have to rush him due to Berry's fine job as a fill-in (through Sunday, anyway), but the Tigers tend to be cautious with injuries anyway.

It will likely come down to whether the Tigers want a spare infielder who won't play much or a reserve outfielder who could be a defensive option or a pinch runner/hitter.

Berry flunked the sacrifice bunt test Sunday, although he did get a single to center on an 0-2 pitch after muffing his two sacrifice tries.

He has shown some expertise bunting for hits, though, getting two in his first five games in the majors. Berry has scored easily from first on a double, gone first-to-third with no problems and stolen three bases in three tries.

His speed and bunting ability are things no other member of manager Jim Leyland's bench can offer.

"I know he can run," Leyland said. "He slaps the ball around pretty good. He can create some stuff for you and he's done that since he got here.

"He's exciting. He also made a great catch that probably saved the game."

The catch was Berry extricating himself from the doghouse. He took a step in on a ball smashed over his head, then laid out to make an over-the-shoulder catch while heading for the center field fence, ending the eighth inning and stranding a runner on third.

Jackson probably would have made the catch without the dramatics, but the speed both possess makes it possible.

The situation where Berry would give Detroit something it would not otherwise have occurred in the eighth inning, when Detroit trailed, 3-2.

Alex Avila opened the inning with a single and Leyland pinch-ran for him with his other catcher, Gerald Laird.

There's lots of clubhouse fun and speculation over which catcher is the fastest, but there's no question that two weeks from now Berry would be the pinch-runner of choice in that situation -- if he's still with the team.

Laird is no threat to steal, but Berry has demonstrated over six years of minor league ball that he's tougher than rawhide to throw out. Laird got to second on a groundout to third but remained there as the next two hitters struck out.

Detroit ended up winning anyway, on Miguel Cabrera's two-run home run in the top of the ninth, but there's little question having a guy on your bench who can steal a base at will is a useful late-game option.

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Ben McAdoo willing to give up play-calling duties

Dolphins suspend Lawrence Timmons indefinitely

Greg Olsen placed on IR, will miss at least eight weeks

Report: NFL official under investigation for domestic violence

Alvarez vs. Golovkin result gives boxing another black eye

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jerry Jones defends Elliott amid criticism over lack of effort

NFL monitoring CFL’s decision to end contact practices

RG3 fires back at Santana Moss over Mike Shanahan comments

Chris Long donating game checks to fund Charlottesville scholarships

WATCH: Tigers’ Jeff Ferrell responsive after taking 103-mph liner to head

College football's biggest winners and losers so far

NFL Referee Hotline: Mike McCarthy is sick of these calls

The 'Kevin Durant has mad (Twitter) handles' quiz

Baseball's most underwhelming teams of 2017

The 'Remember the tight ends' quiz

Ranking the best college football fan bases

Getaway Day: Time runs short as postseason nears

Sports & Politics Intersect: White House sticks it to sports

The 'Not so elementary, my dear Watson' quiz

September chill hits Astros, Dodgers at worst time

College football 2017 Week 3 predictions

Three Up, Three Down: Cleveland hits historic heights while Cubs struggle

The 'Will the Indians ever lose again?' quiz

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

NFL Referee Hotline: Mike McCarthy is sick of these calls

Baseball's most underwhelming teams of 2017

The 'Kevin Durant has mad (Twitter) handles' quiz

Ranking the best college football fan bases

The 'Remember the tight ends' quiz

Getaway Day: Time runs short as postseason nears

Sports & Politics Intersect: White House sticks it to sports

The 'Not so elementary, my dear Watson' quiz

September chill hits Astros, Dodgers at worst time

Three Up, Three Down: Cleveland hits historic heights while Cubs struggle

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker