Kingston High School Class of 2013 alum Zack Short’s last trip up to the majors seems to have stuck, as he’s become part of the Detroit Tigers’ regular lineup at shortstop over the past month. Short has been an integral piece of the Tigers puzzle during the team’s July resurgence, including homers at Comerica Park in Detroit in back-to-back wins over the Texas Rangers last week.
“When we get production out of the bottom of the order from Shorty and Victor (Reyes) — both trying to find their way back to this level and stay here — is good to see,” said Tigers Manager A.J. Hinch said during a virtual press conference on Thursday, July 22. “That’s a good feeling as an offense where we don’t have to sit and wait for one guy to get up to bat or for the order to turn over again for the top of the order that we usually lean pretty heavily on,”
Hinch was speaking at the tail end of a seven-game winning streak that’s since ended, though it pulled the Tigers out of the American League Central’s cellar and into the middle of the pack. Short has played a key role in at least two of those wins, his two-run homer on Wednesday, July 21 breaking the tie in a 4-2 win, and his solo shot the following day part of a 7-5 victory. Short is hitting .188 on the season with five home runs, two doubles, 14 runs, 13 RBI and one stolen base.
Short impressed the Tigers in spring training this year, earning a spot on the team’s taxi squad in Toledo, Ohio, a setup devised by MLB last year when COVID-19 caused the cancellation of the 2020 minor league season. While the minors are back in action in 2021, the taxi squad remains, with major league teams allowed to keep up to five players on an alternate training site for road games. He’s since proven himself to be a versatile, reliable infielder for a Detroit team finding its rhythm in the second half of the season.