More on Bonderman
I didn’t get a chance to get into it more than in passing in the article, but it’s obvious that making room for Bonderman poses a difficult decision. Justin Verlander, Edwin Jackson and Rick Porcello combined for 14 wins in May. They’re obviously not going anywhere. Dontrelle Willis had been pitching well until his last start last Friday at Baltimore, where he gave up seven runs on 10 hits in five innings. He won’t be heading back to the minor leagues. Armando Galarraga struggled for much of May, then had better stuff last Thursday against the O’s, but still lost with three runs on 10 hits in seven innings. After double-checking, he supposedly still has an option left.
If somebody gets pushed out into the bullpen, or if Bonderman goes into the bullpen (more on that shortly), there’s still a move to be made. And among the current Tigers relievers, there’s a similar crunch. Fernando Rodney, Joel Zumaya and Bobby Seay aren’t going anywhere. Nor likely is Nate Robertson, who pitched well in May as Detroit’s second left-hander and has service time. Zach Miner has pitched better in shorter bursts and is out of options. Ryan Perry can be optioned back to the minors, but has pitched effectively in situations.
I mentioned the possibility of Bonderman to the bullpen in the article, but Bonderman brought up the possibility first.
“Maybe I won’t be going back in the rotation. You never know,” he said. “I don’t know what’s going to happen. That’s the thing. Nobody can sit there and say, ‘You’re going back in the rotation.’ Nobody knows. The way it’s going, heck, I wouldn’t blame them for not putting me back in the rotation. I’m willing to do whatever to help the team. Wherever they put me, I’ll pitch, and I’ll go about my business and worry about it one day at a time.”
To Bonderman’s credit, he isn’t going to make any demands. That still isn’t going to make the Tigers’ decision very easy. One thing to keep in mind is the Tigers’ doubleheader at the White Sox next Monday. With no off-day from this Monday (June 1) until two Mondays from now (June 15), they’ll almost surely need a sixth starter for one turn through the rotation.