Perry's return could mean DL for Bonderman
Ryan Perry’s trip to the Minor Leagues was apparently a short one. So, too, might be Jeremy Bonderman’s return to the Tigers.
Though Perry was scheduled to join the Mud Hens on Thursday for the start of their homestand, he had no sooner arrived before he was emptying his locker again and heading out, according to the Toledo Blade. He appears poised to rejoin the Tigers this weekend in Pittsburgh for their three-game series against the Pirates.
By rule, players who are optioned to the Minor Leagues can’t return to the Majors within 10 days unless they’re replacing a player who goes on the disabled list.
That’s where Bonderman could come into play. He hasn’t pitched since giving up six runs over four-plus innings in the second game of Monday’s day-night doubleheader against the White Sox, an outing that by manager Jim Leyland’s account was “not too good.”
Bonderman was in the bullpen for the remainder of the series, but wasn’t used. Every other pitcher in the Tigers bullpen entered one of Detroit’s final three games in the series. However, Bonderman said after Thursday’s series finale at U.S. Cellular Field that he was available to pitch and was fine.
Bonderman’s outing Monday was his first Major League appearance in more than a year. He missed most of last season with surgery to correct a blood vessel restriction in his shoulder, then spent this spring building up strength in his arm. He still isn’t at full velocity and might not be until next year. The question the Tigers have faced is whether he’s strong enough yet to pitch effectively.
Manager Jim Leyland said Wednesday that Bonderman would work out of the bullpen for now. Asked if Bonderman could be a reliever longer term, much like Nate Robertson has been for Detroit so far this season, Leyland didn’t think that would happen.
“I do not think that,” Leyland said Wednesday.