Tigers to get by with short bullpen

As pointed out earlier, the Tigers’ move to make room for Aubrey Huff on the 25-man roster was to go a man short in the bullpen, optioning reliever Eddie Bonine to Triple-A Toledo. That leaves the Tigers with six relievers and an 11-man pitching staff. In the past, Leyland has said he would rather to with 13 pitchers than 11.

The way Leyland made it sound, however, it probably won’t be a long-term move.

“We’ll play that by ear,” Leyland said. “This could be a day-to-day thing.”

It won’t be something that lingers past August, since the Tigers will have an expanded roster Sept. 1. But that probably isn’t what Leyland means. With Casey Fien, Freddy Dolsi and Clay Rapada still on the 40-man roster, plus Nate Robertson and Jeremy Bonderman on rehab assignments, Detroit has enough available pitchers to shuttle back and forth if need be whenever Leyland feels like he needs that extra arm.

Players who are optioned to the Minors must remain there for at least 10 days before being recalled to the big leagues, barring an injury replacement.

That said, Bonine didn’t pitch at all after coming up from Toledo last Friday, and Chris Lambert was barely pressed into action. So it’s not like the spot for the last reliever in the bullpen was that valuable recently.

6 Comments

For awhile, it looked like my post would start with “Well, we just got outpitched tonight.” Felix was dealing, and so was Rick. If you’re a fan of pitcher’s duels like I am, this was a good one.

A nod to Raburn for a heady piece of baserunning in the 8th, scoring our 5th run. Good work there, Ryan. When Cabrera doesn’t try to carry the entire team and “stays within himself” he’s a weapon. Mario said that Leyland doesn’t believe in “protection” and, while I haven’t heard that one myself, it wouldn’t surprise me. I think Huff provided protection or whatever you want to call it. And the new guy had a couple of good swings too. That last drive would have been out of Camden and a number of other yards. This is going to help.
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That ninth inning, especially the 12-pitch AB by Lopez, was a doozy. The more pitches he saw, the more likely he was to do damage. This will sound ridiculous, but I finally just took my arm and hurled the last pitch at the TV, like someone playing a Wii game, and got the K. :-)
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In case it comes up, I would have had Granderson bunt in the 8th.
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Leyland’s way of managing the bullpen amazes me. His “”by the book matchup method” once again prevented him from using his best relief pitcher, Brandon Lyon. It was obvious that Seay was way off tonight, but JL either didn’t see it or didn’t let it affect his book managing. So once again, Lyon warms up, stands there and watches for awhile, then sits down. Hey Jim, I’d like to keep Brandon interested in signing with us for next year. If it’s me and I’m in a 1-1 tie starting the 8th and my best pitcher is my 8th inning guy, I bring him in to start the inning. His cutter should neutralize the lefties. We may have saved a lot of thrills and chills that way. What are you gonna do? JL’s not leaving and he’s not changing.
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Good win anyway. Took advantage of both breaks, the fan interference that wasn’t called and the error by their shortstop Wilson.
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–Rich

And to top it all off, Sox LOSE!

Rich – total agreement on Curtis – I was having a heated discussion with Leyland and Curtis last night for not squaring to bunt – no outs, runner on first and we don’t move him into position when we are down a run in the 8th? My husband was watching something else in the other room, he had to switch to Fox D so he could see what I was so ticked about.

In the end it worked out – nice to see us get some luck with that error – that changed the entire game. Nice homerun by Avila, although I gotta say I feel bad for Laird – Laird has been a tremendous defensive catcher for us and he seems like the ultimate team guy, always reved up, but he isn’t producing at the plate like we need, so maybe platooning will work – it worked the beginning of the season for Santiago/Everett.

I like the hit by Miggy too – sure, would have loved to see the homerun, his power numbers just aren’t what we expect, but we couldn’t have asked for a timelier base hit, and right up the gut, assuring that 2nd runner making it home.

(I was having a heated discussion with Leyland and Curtis last night for not squaring to bunt – no outs, runner on first and we don’t move him into position when we are down a run in the 8th?)
-Hmmmmmm …… that’s what I said about JL/Grandy in the 8th inning of the previous game. I wasn’t agreed with. My nerves/heart have been MUCH better since I’ve started to turn the game off when “Chinese Fire Drill” Rodney is brought into the game. I’m sure glad I didn’t have to watch last nite’s 9th. inning!!! I go online to find out the outcome of the game. Makes for MUCH less stress!!!
-Lee

If we can survive this and the Oakland series in good shape, a large opportunity may present itself. Next Monday, the White Sox start an extremely tough part of their schedule. They have two separate 4-game series with Boston, home and away, sandwiched around a 3-game trip to Yankee Stadium, a 3-game set in the Metrodome, with an afternoon makeup game at Wrigley Field thrown in for good measure. Then after a 2-game respite at home with Oakland, they begin a west coast trip. There’s a possibility they could be in shambles by September 18. If they even come close to matching our puny 2-11 record against Boston and New York, they could be in big trouble, race-wise.
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Looks like Inge was held out of Sunday’s game because of a therapeutic injection administered Saturday. That explains that.
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–Rich

Did Perry start the 8th due to a tie game and 6 relief pitchers? I would of left him in against Ichiro and thrown high heat. Used Seay against Branyon and then used Lyon. I generally prefer to see Seay as lefty specialist. I am glad the Tigers pulled off the comeback.
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Avila continues to be impressive and has provided a nice boost.
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KC helped us with a nice comeback of their own last night.
Mark

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