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Jhonny Peralta is starting in left field for the Tigers tonight

jhonny peralta getty
Jhonny Peralta’s Biogenesis suspension is over. The Tigers have clinched the division. So it’s experiment time:

Jhonny Peralta will start in LF tonight. He’ll play LF part of all three games in Miami.

— Jason Beck (@beckjason) September 27, 2013

And it’s a pretty smart experiment. Jose Iglesias is a great gloveman at short and there’s no sense in depriving the Tigers’ pitchers of that in the playoffs. Left field, in contrast, has been pretty darn bad for Detroit, with Andy Dirks’ OPS+ of 86 leading the way thus far. If Peralta’s bat isn’t rusty, and if Peralta can keep from embarrassing himself in left, the Tigers will have a nice upgrade.

And even if Peralta can’t handle left, having him around as a bench bat, a pinch-hitter for Iglesias if needed and a potential replacement for Miguel Cabrera if the banged up MVP can’t go for some reason would be a nice luxury.

As for you who disapprove of the recently-suspended Peralta being activated by the Tigers:

On Peralta coming back, Leyland says, “This is the United States of America,” says he made mistake, served time, time to move on. I agree.

— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) September 27, 2013

Someone hand me a tissue. I can’t help but hear “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” playing over Leyland’s words and I can’t keep from getting weepy.